A study suggests that the risk for sleep disorders among college freshmen may be a predictor of retention and academic success.

Results show that students at risk for a sleep disorder were more likely to leave the institution over the three-year period, although this association was weakened when covariates were included. Risk for sleep disorder also predicted grade point average (GPA) at the end of the first and second years.

“A survey that screens for sleep disorders administered when students first enter college may identify a potentially modifiable risk factor for leaving before completing a degree,” says lead author Jane Gaultney, a professor at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, in a release. The research abstract was published recently in an online supplement of the journal Sleep and presented Wednesday at SLEEP 2015.

The study group comprised of entering freshmen screened for risk for sleep disorders using a validated survey. Participants were examined over a 3-year period to see if they were likely to leave the institution or have a lower GPA.