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Fall in interest for agriculture-related courses

The Central Applications Office (CAO) has released 2020 application data, up to the Change of Course Choices closing date on March 1st, 2020.

The application data has shown that first-choice preferences for agriculture-related courses in 2020 have dropped, in comparison to 2019.

CAO applicants

The CAO received 72,973 applications by the February 1st closing date – which is a decrease of 61 on the previous year.

Ag courses

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The drop of 1st choice preferences for agricultural courses is universal between all disciplines.

The fall in numbers is as follows;

Level 8:

  • Agriculture – 372 1st preferences (393 in 2019);
  • Veterinary – 902 1st preferences (933 in 2019);
  • Interdisciplinary programmes involving agriculture, forestry and veterinary – 381 1st preferences (431 in 2019).

Level 6/7:

  • Agriculture – 556 1st preferences (588 in 2019);
  • Veterinary – 881 1st preferences (951 in 2019);
  • Interdisciplinary programmes involving agriculture, forestry and veterinary – 73 1st preferences (67 in 2019).

Falls in 1st preferences choices for these courses ranges between 3 and 12%. 

There has also been a fall in mentions on the CAO applications for these courses, where applicants choose these courses as a lesser preference. The fall in mentions for ag courses ranges between 2 and 11%.

Change of mind

The data provided is subject to change when late applications are taken into account and when the Change of Mind facility closes on July 1st. at 5:15 pm.

Speaking about the application figures, communications officer for CAO, Eileen Keleghan, commented: “The majority of CAO applicants will be permitted to use the Change of Mind facility when it opens on 5 May to add, remove or re-order course choices, which will result in changes to the figures released.”

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