Bocconi University

Bocconi University – an overview

Founded in 1902, Bocconi is an internationally-renowned private research university. It is located in Milan, Italy, and focuses on economics, business and law.

SDA Bocconi is the business school wing of the university and offers MBA, EMBA and Specialised Master’s courses. Moreover, its MBA course has consistently been ranked in the top five in the world by Forbes, so unsurprisingly there is fierce competition for a place at SDA Bocconi. Italian national rankings are perhaps not the most reliable, since they differentiate between private and public universities, but what is beyond doubt is Bocconi’s pre-eminence in economics, management and finance, where it has consistently achieved top ranking among all Italy‘s universities.

Bocconi’s international focus not only attracts over 2,000 exchange students every year, but also means that you will have the option of working on trans-national projects, gaining international exposure and enjoying opportunities to study abroad. Its overall acceptance rate is 38 per cent and there are approximately 14,700 students studying at Bocconi, 4,500 of whom are international.

Research at Bocconi

Bocconi has 20 permanent research centres, and a number of project centres, which cover a broad range of topics, including health and social care administration, marketing, regional economics, sustainability and energy and environmental economics and policy.

Bocconi University-Do they offer courses taught in English?


Below is a list of the most popular courses taught in English. If you want further information, then call or email us at Elab and we will check what English-taught courses are currently being planned for the next academic year.

BACHELORS taught in English

  • Economic and Social Sciences
  • Economics and Management for Arts
  • Culture and Communication
  • Economics, Management and Computer Science
  • International Economics and Finance
  • International Economics and Management International Politics and Government
  • World Bachelor in Business

MASTERS taught in English

  • Sustainability and Energy Management
  • Quantitative Finance and Risk Management

Master of Science

  • Economics and Management of Government and International Organisations
  • Economic and Social Sciences
  • International Management
  • Marketing Management
  • Cyber Risk Strategy and Governance

Bocconi University-What’s the application process?

1. Fulfil the Bocconi requirements

You will need to upload some or all of the following documents, depending on the course for which you are applying:

  • IELTS or TOEFL certificate with a score of 7 or 100+ respectively
  • School reports
  • Personal statement
  • CV
  • A photograph – head and shoulders, which will be used for your university ID card
  • A photocopy of your passport

In addition, Bocconi requires applicants to sit an online test.

2. Meet the deadlines for submitting an application

There are three application periods:

SessionDeadlineWhen to sit the testResults sent out
Early session24 June12-16 JulyLate September
Winter session25 January7-11 FebruaryLate March
Spring session14 April2-5 MayEarly June

3. Fill in the online application

Once you have chosen up to four courses (the maximum), you need to register on the Bocconi website and open a My Application account. Remember that you cannot use a smartphone to open an account, and note, too, that Bocconi prefers applicants to use Mozilla Firefox as their browser, and for uploading documents.

What is more, you will also use My Application to choose your preferred date for sitting the Bocconi entrance test, for modifying your application details, if needed (for example, if you change email or address), and for accessing your results and  finding out whether you have received the offer of a place.

The Bocconi Entrance Test

There is no cap on the number of times you can sit the test in one year.

The test itself is made up of 50 multiple-choice questions: 15 maths questions; 15 logical thinking questions, 13 reading comprehension questions and 7 questions which test your numerical reasoning powers.

As is always the case with any form of entrance test, the best way to prepare for the Bocconi test is to methodically work your way through as many past papers as you can find time to do. Alumni all agree that the test does not demand any particular revision or specific knowledge, so you cannot revise for it – just practise!

How is the Bocconi entrance test organised?

Bocconi uses a platform called Respondus which offers a proctoring system. You will have to download Respondus, and this requires:

  • a PC or Mac (not a tablet)
  • webcam
  • microphone
  • Windows 10
  • Mac OS 10.12 or later.

Respondus blocks any programs which are not part of the Bocconi test while you are sitting it, and also records your entire exam session – which you will sit at home. 

Before taking the test you will be given a date – often  a week in advance – on which you can download Respondus and check it is working. If you run into any technical difficulties, you will find a link to ask for technical help and support. Do not overlook this step and just cheerfully expect everything to work on the day. Technology can betray us…

On the test day – which you have booked in advance through My Application on the Bocconi website – you are allowed to bring in a bottle of water which cannot have a label, two blank sheets of paper and either a pen or a pencil. You are not permitted to have a smartphone, a watch with an internet connection, reference books, a tablet etc in the room.

Respondus uses facial recognition and will check your ID.

You must choose a quiet room for the test and will have to pan around the room and film it from every angle to show what it looks like before you begin answering the questions. At any point during the exam, you may have to do a so-called  Instant Environment Check, if Respondus requires it. This consists of a 360 degree webcam check of the room.

The test itself is multiple choice and will last for 70 minutes. Make sure there are no dramas: eat something before you begin, use the toilet, check the room so that you are not too hot or cold, put any potentially contentious items outside, make sure your cat isn’t hidden in a corner or under a chair, remove your Apple watch etc.

Bocconi University-How much will it cost?

Milan is not particularly cheap, but you should manage to find accommodation from 700-900 euros a month and you will need to budget another 300 euros for food, books etc. Bocconi offers 2,000 places in its dorms, where single rooms in apartments for 1,2,4 people are reasonably priced, but finding accommodation near the campus is not difficult, either. In the end, as is usually the case, where you live and how much you pay is a very personal decision, shaped by your preferences.

Tuition fees range from 10,000-17,000 euros a year, depending on the course and level. For up to date information, contact us at Elab and we will give you a personalised breakdown.

Bocconi University-Why study at Bocconi?

Bocconi is an excellent university, with a high research output and an outstanding reputation in the fields of politics, public administration, management, finance and business. Student feedback emphasises the calibre of the staff, the high quality teaching and the academic support offered by the professors, lecturers and tutors alike. The Bocconi alumni network is large, active and very useful for subsequent career building on the international stage.

…and Milan?

If you are looking for art or photography, obviously Bocconi is not the university for you, and you should consider Milan’s IED, while if Artificial Intelligence appeals, you could apply to the University of Milan. Milan itself is a sensational, exciting and vibrant city, a hub of creativity and innovation, and you will enjoy living there and taking advantage of its ambience, cuisine, social life and historic streets and architecture. Additionally, Italy‘s second largest city essentially has it all and the combination of studying at Bocconi and living in Milan is well-nigh irresistible.

Call or email us, here at Elab, for guidance, help and additional information. If you are in Italy, or would like to schedule a Zoom call, our Milan office will be pleased to meet you and work with you to maximise your chances of starting an amazing educational journey at Bocconi University.

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