Top 3 reasons students drop out of College/University

College isn’t for everybody. While future students often dream about living the university lifestyle – studying during the day and partying during the night – to many the reality is simply too dysfunctional. According to a study conducted by The Education Trust, roughly 37% of students drop out of college during their first year. Of the graduating students, it usually takes an average of six years to finish a higher education course, even though most degree programs only require half that time.


College is tough and it’s important that students have a passion for their chosen topic; otherwise they are unlikely to withstand the pressure. Students who don’t have this passion will probably end up dropping out fairly early on. It’s also important that students realise the importance of exam revision. The exam experts at Justin Craig stated that many students drop out simply due to a lack of exam preparation.

Most universities and colleges will host open days to help students decide whether higher-education is right for them.

Before deciding what subject to study, it’s important for applicants to have a long hard think, as it could lead to a career that will determine the outcome of their life. These are the top 3 reasons why students often drop out.

Find Work

College isn’t cheap. In some countries it can leave debts which will mount for decades and decades. With so much financial pressure, it’s hardly surprising that many students drop out in order to gain work placements instead. Although degree students will generally earn between 10% and 300% more than those who haven’t entered further education, it can still be a risk.

Take a Gap Year

Many students want to travel and see the world while they are still young and have the chance. After over a decade of compulsory education, students often want a break. Taking a gap year can provide the time required to save up the money and travel the world without any other commitments. It can also be hugely self-satisfying and can help people discover who they really are. It’s not uncommon for students partaking in higher education to have a reality check and drop out purely to see the world.

The Wrong Course

Self-realization is a strange thing that can either be joyous or depressing. Some students have a career path in their sights from a very young age, while others may pick on a whim. Students won’t know whether or not they will enjoy a course until they start, and sadly some people simply get the feeling that their chosen topic is not for them. That’s why many colleges, such as Oaklands College in Hertfordshire, have open days every season. Choosing the wrong topic is without a doubt the most common reason for dropping out of college education and open days can help future students make more informed decisions.

Dropping out of college may be frowned upon, but it isn’t always a negative affair. Most colleges will prefer to have students that are determined and committed. This doesn’t mean that they are glad to see the back of less enthusiastic students; it just allows them to focus more attention on those who are truly passionate about learning.

If you are considering dropping out of college or university, remember that you never stop learning. So don’t feel rushed to complete a course just because you think time is running out.

Image Credit: COD Newsroom

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