Parcoursup: why this fiasco was predictable

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For a few hours now, social networks have been attacking Parcourssup, the platform responsible for managing the wishes of future students in higher education. Indeed, the results have fallen and there are many disappointments. But could what looks like a Parcoursup fiasco have been avoided?

Let’s dive into the Routeup code

On Monday May 21, Parcoursup made part of its source code available to the curious on We emphasize that this is only one part of the code: the one that explains how assignments are managed, not how institutions and other universities rank applicants.

While most media agree that the code is clean and well documented, the very functioning of Parcoursup leaves some doubt about certain choices. Thus, unlike APB (Admission Post Bac), the old system, a high school student no longer classifies these wishes according to his or her preferences: each wish is at the same level as the others, which means that if he or she is accepted in a stream A and placed on a waiting list in streams B and C, a place is also reserved for him or her in the latter two streams, which considerably lengthens the waiting lists.

Towards a saturation of the system?

And that is indeed the main flaw of Parcoursup. A future student may be accepted into a stream and remain in a queue to look for a place in an institution that interests him/her more. As a result, waiting lists for students may take a long time to decline, leaving high school students in doubt for several weeks.

Yesterday, of the 810,000 students registered on Parcoursup, 436,000 saw at least one of their wishes validated. Every day, the platform will be updated to update the queues for the high school students concerned.

On social networks, it’s better to laugh about it…

On Twitter, high school students did not hesitate to share their joy but especially their disappointment in the sometimes random choices of Parcoursup.

Some find themselves in funny situations where they are accepted into courses when they have expressly “sabotaged” their application through their cover letter.

Others, who had nevertheless shown originality, find themselves with refusals.

In any case, Parcoursup certainly still needs adjustments to become more effective. Let’s hope that high school students will not be demotivated as the Baccalaureate exams are fast approaching.

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