Detecting and Preventing Drop out from Higher Education
or Supporting Students to Switch Successfully to VET

The European Union aims to reduce the number of dropouts from higher education. Despite various efforts in recent years too many students in most European countries still drop out before they complete their higher education degree. The decision to leave university is usually a long process of alienation, characterized by complexity and multidimensionality. Dropping out can be a positive decision when students realize that the time, place or degree is not right for them.

The Erasmus sponsored PrevDrop project targets the situation of university students who face dropout risks. They can be subdivided into two groups: a) Students for whom a successful continuation of their studies appears to be probable and b) Students for whom a successful continuation of their studies is highly improbable. While for the first group measures will be provided that promote students’ successful completion of studies, measures for the second group focus on integrating them into Vocational Education and Training (VET) and/or the labour market.

In the course of the project the partners trained student advisers from universities, careers advisers from employment agencies and consultants working with these two groups. In order to give (potential) study dropouts the best possible support it is necessary to develop holistic integration and career pathways for them and to promote (closer) networking between advisory institutions. The main innovative aspect of the PrevDrop project is its overall approach to prevent dropout from the system of higher education as a whole and from the labour market.