A Westmeath guidance counsellor says this is down to long term thinking.
There has been a surge in CAO applications for STEM and second-level teaching courses.
Just under 73 thousand applications have been made as of the change of course choices deadline on the 1st of March.
First preferences for journalism and certain arts courses have experienced the biggest drops.
Guidance Counsellor in Colaiste Mhuire CBS in Mullingar Betty McLaughlin says students are thinking of the long term prospects of STEM courses:
She also believes the bad PR surrounding working conditions in Irish hospitals is causing a drop in applications to nursing courses.
Ms. McLaughlin believes students are taking notice of the long hours and pay in the sector.
Just under 73 thousand CAO applications have been made in total this year up to the change of course choices deadline on the 1st of March.
The former president of the Institute of Guidance Counsellors says nursing remains a stable choice for long term employment.