What you need to know about Parcoursup

Parcoursup is the higher education admissions platform. How does it work?

The higher education admissions platform

Parcoursup is the national admissions platform for the first year of higher education.

On this platform, secondary school students, apprentices or students changing course can access the first year of higher education in 2023 by pre-enrolling, submitting their course preferences and responding to the admission offers from institutions providing higher education courses (Bachelor's degrees, Section de Technicien Supérieur (STS - Advanced Technical Section), Institut Universitaire de Technologie (IUT - University Technology Institutes) Classes Préparatoires aux Grandes Ecoles (CPGE - Classes preparing for admission to the Grandes Ecoles), engineering schools, etc.). 

On the Parcoursup site, you will find:

  • The available courses
  • The steps of the procedure
  • The answers to your questions

Who can use Parcoursup?

Anyone who wants to enrol in the first year of higher education must submit an application and state their preferences on Parcoursup:

  • European students who want to study in 1st year
  • Non-European students who passed a French baccalauréat in AEFE ("Agence Française pour l'Enseignement Français à l'Etranger") high school and you want to join the French higher education system in 1st year
  • Non-European student who want to register in 1st year in an institution excluded from the DAP ("Demande d'Admission Préalable", Preliminary request for admission )process. It is generally the case for IUTs (Instituts Universitaires Technologiques), STS (Sections de Techniciens Supérieur) preparatory classes to "grandes écoles" (CPGE)
  • French secondary school students
  • French apprentices
  • All students changing courses in the first year


  • Students who are repeating a year and staying on the same course (they must directly re-enrol with the institution)
  • Candidates subject to a prior admission application (DAP)
  • Candidates for continuing education

Changing course or repeating the year

Is Parcoursup for students who are repeating a year?

If you are already a student and you are repeating the same course, you do not need to state your preferences on the platform as you are entitled to repeat a year. You must immediately re-enrol with your institution.

However, if you are changing to another course, you need to use the Parcoursup platform, even if you are changing to a course in the same institution.

Will my application to change course be examined in the same way as a final year secondary school student?

Yes. As with secondary school students, the match between the candidate's plan and the characteristics of the course will be taken into account when the application is examined. The optional follow-up form can therefore be an asset when explaining why you are changing course, how this relates to your plan and what you want to gain from higher education.

I'm changing course. Do I keep the same Parcoursup applicant number as in 2021? Will my data be kept?

The applicant number changes every year, but you can recover the information from your application for the previous year from Parcoursup, if you still have access to the e-mail address given during your previous enrolment. However, this can only be done once, when you enrol on Parcoursup.

Features of Parcoursup

  • Information on the characteristics of each course (expectations, success rate, drop-out rate, etc.)
  • No ranking of preferences
  • Multiple preferences possible
  • No random allocation

The procedure

On the Parcoursup platform, you can:

  • create your pre-enrolment application
  • find information on different higher education courses
  • state your study preferences without ranking them
  • complete your application with the information requested by the institutions providing your selected courses
  • confirm your preferences so that they can be examined by the institutions providing your selected courses
  • receive admission offers from the institutions
  • respond to the offers made to you
  • state that you wish to start your higher education studies with a gap year

Information to guide you

For each course, you will find on Parcoursup:

  • the dates of the open days or immersion days or weeks organised by the institutions you are interested in
  • contact details for an educational manager at the institution in question
  • specific information on courses, their content, organisation of lessons, success rates, drop-out rates, number of places available
  • the expectations of each course (knowledge and skills expected by the institutions in order to succeed)
  • the information taken into account when examining your preferences
  • if you have a disability, a contact for each course so that you can ask questions about accessibility

This information should help you understand the specific features of each course.

The courses offered

Parcoursup contains over 19,500 first cycle higher education courses. 

You can state preferences for:

  • selective courses (Classes Préparatoires aux Grandes Ecoles (CPGE - Classes preparing for admission to the Grandes Ecoles),  Brevet de Technicien Supérieur (BTS - Advanced Technical Certificate), Diplôme Universitaire de technologie (DUT - University Technology Diploma), schools, etc.) for which admission is by application, competitive examination or interview
  • non-selective courses (« Licence » (Bachelor)), Première année commune aux études de santé (PACES - Bachelor's degree, first year of healthcare studies))
  • https://www.parcoursup.fr/ for all information & the procedure timetable
  • https://www.campusfrance.org/en/enrolment-higher-education-France for general information

International students

Admission to higher education in France via Parcoursup may concern you. > Find out more

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