AIT is trending upwards as indicative 1st round CAO offers are made to leaving certificate students

Increase in demand for Engineering, Science and Business Courses

AIT has this year seen an 8% increase in points overall compared to 2016 and more significantly overall points on its level 7 degree programmes are up 10% from last year, showing the level of demand for its programmes. Although AIT will not be able to see the overall picture until after round 3 offers and vacant places are filled, the Institute
is trending upwards and is very happy with the overall positive growth of the Institute.

As AIT’s offers started to go out on Monday 21st August in round 1, the points increase in programmes has highlighted the Institute’s strong reputation in STEM related courses through its Faculty of Science and Health and Faculty of Engineering and Informatics. From AIT’s perspective being the only HEI in the region and of course sitting among strong growth sectors with continued foreign direct investment that increases year on year within the BioPharma and MedTech sector, AIT has been creating a strong pipeline of students that will fill this ongoing demand for the regional need in the Science and Engineering sector.

Changes to both the points and the leaving certificate grading system have contributed to fluctuations in the points requirements for the majority of courses nationwide. While the points are down for more than half of courses across HEI’s nationally, in the case of around 40% they have risen and the same is reflected in AIT.

Vice President of Academic Affairs & Registrar of AIT, Dr Niall Seery stated, “AIT’s points increase is in line with economic recovery and reflects AIT’s commitment to excellence in the STEM disciplines which echoes current industry demand. The growth in demand for places in 3rd level is mirrored in areas of the economy that has been on the rise over the past year. All of this shows that leaving certificate students are all making very wise and focused career choices.” He added, “AIT is an Institute that offers potential students access to our suite of programmes across level 6, 7 and 8 and this year we have seen an increase in level 7 programmes of 10% which reflects the Leaving Certificate students demand to commit to degree programmes.”

Professor Ciarán Ó Catháin, President of AIT added, “If you have received an offer from AIT this morning, I want to congratulate you. We are delighted that you have chosen to study at AIT and we are looking forward to welcoming you on campus for induction on the 7thand 8th of September.”

Not all programmes in AIT have shown an increase in demand. Nursing points dropped marginally in order to make more places available to potential incoming students and to cater for demand. AIT’s nursing programmes are embedded with industry across the areas of biomedical and health science research groups which not only enable AIT to respond to industry demands but also offers graduates the opportunity to undertake masters and PhD programmes in these fields.

Business performed marginally better on its points profile across its programmes compared to last year, the biggest increase in points was seen in AIT’s level 7 offering which went up by 6%, but its level 6 offering noted a drop of 8% in points when compared to 2016. This strengthens the narrative that students are migrating more towards level 7s across our Institute and is in line with the national growing appetite for higher qualification.

It is disappointing to note that some areas of engineering such as quantity surveying are not showing the demand that they should – especially given the skills shortage in the sector at the moment. Software and computer engineering have also seen a marginal decline, which is of concern as industry groups have said over the past year that they urgently need more skilled graduates in the area. Engineers Ireland said today that Ireland must produce more engineers at a quicker rate to keep up with demand on infrastructure and technology and as a body they encouraged those who are not offered the points they need for their preferred engineering course to consider all routes into engineering which include apprenticeships, of which AIT has seen a marked increase in recent times through its new apprenticeship programmes.

Vice President of Academic Affairs & Registrar of AIT, Dr Niall Seery also commented that leaving certificate students who meet the minimum entry requirements and did not get an offer are encouraged to review a number of AIT programmes on the “Vacant Places” section on the CAO website which is open from Tuesday 22nd August.

AIT is an Institute that continually invests in the academic success, progression and retention of our students by employing highly qualified tutors to coach and support students through their studies on a no-cost basis. AIT recognises that many of its students struggle financially and do not have the resources to pay for private tuition. Tutor support is provided to all AIT undergraduate students in maths, programming, software engineering, accounting, finance, marketing, management, economics, chemistry, physics, microbiology, biochemistry, ecotoxicology, analytical toxicology, quality control & experimental

AIT also has offered writing skills support for a number of years and in 2015, AIT invested further in this resource by establishing the AIT Academic Writing Centre. Students can avail of one-to-one and group academic writing workshops to help build their writing skills and caters to students of all writing ability. AIT has an excellent track record in encouraging and supporting progression to third level of mature students and people from socio-economic/educationally disadvantaged groups. Pre-entry activities include an Access Course and a number of collaborative projects across the region.

Students or their parents who have concerns about their results can access support through the National Parents Council Post Primary (NPCPP) who run a helpline, staffed by guidance counsellors, from Wednesday 16th August (expected Leaving Certificate results date) to Wednesday 23rd August. The NPCPP helpline number is 1800 265 165. First round offers from the CAO are issuing today 21 August 2017 and second round offers will issue on 31 August 2017. Students can also check the Available Places application facility which opens on the CAO website on the 22nd of August, for places on courses which remain unfilled, which may be of interest.

A total of 56,580 Students sat the Leaving Certificate this year including Leaving Certificate Vocational Programme, and 2,814 sat Leaving Certificate applied.In 2016, 55,708 students sat the Leaving Certificate and Leaving Certificate Vocational Programme and a further 2,758 sat Leaving Certificate applied.The total number of CAO applicants at the close of the Late Application facility on May 1 2017 was 80,345. This compares to 80,323 CAO applicants in 2016 which demonstrates a negligible change in the number of applicants. The number of pre 2017 LC records presented in 2017 was 19,978 in March 2017. This is a slight reduction on the number of pre 2016 Leaving Certificate records presented in 2016 which was 20,780 in March 2016.

For further information or for interviews – contact:

Director of Marketing & Communications

Orla Thornton

087 7944113

othornton@ait.ie

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