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Here's what courses students have been applying for in this year's CAO applications

Nursing saw the biggest increase in applications since last year, while arts and social sciences had the biggest drop.

Image: Shutterstock/Goodluz

A TOTAL OF 76,081 CAO applications were received last month, an increase of 1,657 from last year.

In level 8 courses, arts and social science once again got the highest number of application with 83,645 –  14,406 of which were first preference.

This was followed by business courses (60,604 choices and 10,843 first preferences) and science (53,335 choices – 8,213 first preferences).

Veterinary Medicine, Agriculture and Pharmacy and Dentistry courses are once again the lowest subscribed courses in Ireland.

Just 834 students applied for veterinary – 560 first preferences. Meanwhile, dentistry got 1,085 choices and just 303 first preferences.

Courses that saw a big increase in applications since 2015 include nursing (up 3,811 choices, 587 first preferences) and business (up 2,466 in choices – 790 first preferences).

The biggest drop off was in Arts and Social Science – even though it managed to stay among the most popular courses.

However, it had 2,716 less choices and 235 less first preferences compared to last year.

CAO application forms

(For a larger image of the chart click here.)

There was a total of 10,280 applications from applicants over 23 years of age – down 483 applications from 2015.

The data provided at this stage is interim data and is subject to change when late applications are taken into account and when the ‘Change of Mind’ facility closes on 1 July.

Speaking about the application figures, General Manager of CAO, Joseph O’Grady, 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 today.

The latest information released this morning reveals data up to the Change of Course Choices closing date of 1 March.

Read: Students face battle for places as number of 500 point CAO courses jumps up>

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