CAO outlines changes in student preferences in 2020

Michaela O'Dea


Michaela O'Dea

CAO outlines changes in student preferences in 2020

The Central Applications Office (CAO) received a staggering 73,000 applications in February. 

There has been various increases and decreases in applications this year as students opt for the science, engineering and mathematics(STEM) sector and second-level teaching.  

First preferences for journalism and certain arts courses have experienced the biggest drops bu 19% and 5% respectively.

The number of students that applied for a special scheme targeting students with disabilities (DARE) has increased by 4% to a total of 7,252.

Mature student applicants (over 23 years of age) has decreased by 7% to 7,273.

There has been a 6% decline in applications from UK students, but this fall is notable from an previously existing small pool. In total, 715 students applied to study in Ireland in the 2020/21 academic year.

The number of applications from Northern Ireland has increased by 48 or 4% on last year, as the numbers increased form 1,269 to 1,317.

Additionally, there has been a whopping 43% increase in transport service courses as 297 people applied.

This latest data published by the CAO is preliminary and is subject to change as the official closing deadline for applicants is May 1,2020 with a change of mind facility opening on May 5,2020 until June 1,2020.