Courses relating to construction, computer science and engineering have the highest drop out rates of any college discipline, according to a new report by the Higher Education Authority.
The report, titled 'A study of progression in Irish Higher Education (2013/14 to 2014/15)', found that Construction related courses had an average rate of non-progression of 28%, the highest of any discipline in the country. Education related courses had the lowest rate of non-progression, at just 4%.
Level 8 Computer Science and Engineering related courses had a non-progression rate of 16% and 13% respectively.
The report also looked at trends of non-progression across types of sectors and third level institutions. Level 6 and Level 7 courses saw the highest rates of non-progression, ranging from 26% to 27%, compared to an average of 11% in Level 8 courses. Of Level 8's, universities had the highest non-progression rates (16%), followed by institutes of technology (11%) and colleges (6%).
In total, about 3.6% of the country's third level students are repeat students, with the greatest number of these doing Level 7 courses in institutes of technology.
The report also found how characteristics of students that drop out differ across types of institutions. It found that women are less likely to drop out than men in all sectors and institutions, except in Level 8 courses in colleges, and that mature students are more likely to progress than new entrants, except in Level 8 courses at universities.