Trinity sees drop in first choice applications through CAO

CAO data indicates a 3.6% decline in first choices for Trinity courses for next year, with a significant 19% drop in overall applications from Northern Ireland

There has been a decrease in the number of students choosing Trinity as their first choice of college, according to preliminary data from the Central Applications Office (CAO).

10,179 students listed a course from Trinity as their first preference in their CAO application, representing 15.8% of those who listed a Level 8 course at the top of their course list – a 3.6% decline from last year’s round of applications.

Overall applications from Northern Ireland have dropped significantly by almost 20%, with 520 applications received for this academic year, compared with 639 last year.

The total number of students listing a course at Trinity in their application has also dropped by 2.7%, standing at 20,813, or 27% of all CAO applicants.

Applications from the Republic fell by 3% overall, whilst there were increases of 2% and 5% from Great Britain and the rest of the European Union, respectively.

Early and Modern Irish saw the highest increase in first preference choices for any individual course, up 60% from one year ago. History of Art & Architecture (45%), Music Education (27%) and Mental Health Nursing (21%) had the next highest uptake in first choices for the upcoming academic year.

Though courses in the Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences (AHSS) faculty saw broad increases in applications, the opposite trend has occurred in business-related courses.

First preference applications for Global Business has decreased by 3.5%, with a 2% drop in interest for Business, Economics and Social Studies (BESS). Business and Polish first preferences have doubled, albeit from a low starting number, from 5 to 10.

Interest in Health Sciences courses has seen mixed changes, with decreases in first choice applications for the Medicine (-5%) and Dental Science (-13%) courses, but increases in most others.

“We are delighted to see so many students selecting Trinity as [their] first preference for their college experience,” Vice-Provost Orla Shiels said.

“We have worked hard to ensure our students’ experience of college life is both challenging and fulfilling, notwithstanding the disturbances of recent years. In that light it is particularly rewarding to see strong appetite to share our vibrant community,” Shiels concluded.

Evan Skidmore O’Reilly

Evan Skidmore O’Reilly is News Co-Editor for the 70th volume of Trinity News. He is a former Deputy News Editor, and is a current final year Business and Politics student.