University applications from Northern Ireland fall
There has been a slight fall in the number of 18 year olds in Northern Ireland applying to go to university.
That is according to figures just published by the University and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS).
Almost half (46.9%) of all 18 year olds in Northern Ireland applied to UCAS by 30 June 2019, a fall of 0.7% from 2018.
There has, however, been a 7% rise in the number of non-EU students applying through UCAS to study in Northern Ireland.
Meanwhile, the number of 18 year olds in England applying to go to university has risen.
However, Northern Ireland still has the biggest proportion of the 18-year-old population applying to go to university of the four countries in the UK.
In 2019, 10,510 18 year olds in Northern Ireland applied to go to university, down from 11,050 in 2018.
As there has been a fall in the 18-year-old population compared to 2018, the percentage drop in the proportion applying is lower than the numerical drop.
Overall there were 18,520 university applicants of all ages from Northern Ireland in 2019, compared to 19,310 in 2018.
There are a record number of international students applying through UCAS to study in the UK in 2019.
81,340 students from outside the European Union (EU) have applied, up 8% on 2018.
UCAS figures also show that there has been a 7% rise in the number of international students applying to begin studying at universities in Northern Ireland in 2019: 2,410 have applied this year, compared to 2,260 in 2018.
However, Northern Ireland's universities also admit some international students outside the UCAS system through partnerships with other global universities, so the number of international students applying is likely to be higher than the UCAS figures.
The final deadline for applying for up to five universities or colleges simultaneously through UCAS was 30 June 2019.
While there has been a rise in the number of unconditional offers made in recent years, most UK applicants will only have their university place confirmed when they receive their A-level results on 15 August.