Gaining Acceptance to a Closed Course

Closed classes (non-CBS)

If a class is closed and does not have a waitlist on the Class Schedule, follow these steps:

  1. Check the web a few times each day to see if seats are released and available for registration.
  2. Contact the instructor and/or department that offers the class to see if a permission number or a waitlist is available.
  3. For Chemistry, Math and Physics check One Stop for specific information about these closed courses.
  4. Go to the first day of class(es) for any sections that might fit your schedule, as long as you don’t miss other classes to do so.

* Please remember that CBS advisors do not have permission numbers for any closed classes.

Which courses have waitlists?

Most CBS courses with limited enrollment use waitlists to control access to the course when it closes.

What is the purpose of the waitlist?

This departmental waitlist ensures that the available space in the course is allotted in a way that supports student graduation and other departmental and college priorities in a fair and equitable manner.

How does it work?

Once the course has filled the course enrollment limit will automatically go to zero, preventing anyone from registering online. At that point the waitlist is the sole source of student access. To add yourself to a waitlist, attempt to register for the section(s) of the course that fit your schedule. The registration system will notify you that the course is closed, and prompt you to either enter a permission number or add yourself to the waitlist. Waitlisted sections will be shown on your enrollment page to remind you which classes you are trying to add.

When should I add myself to the waitlist?

Add yourself to the list on your registration date, or as soon as possible thereafter.

Should I attend the first day of class?

Yes! If you haven’t been given a permission number before the first day of classes, permission numbers (if available) will likely be given out on the first day or shortly thereafter. As with any other U of M course, your seat can be given to another student if you don’t attend the first day of class.

Can I save a seat for a fellow student?

No! Because the enrollment limit is set to zero, any seat that is released by someone already in the course will be given to the next student on the waitlist. Released seats are not available for regular web enrollment.

Who gets priority on the waitlist?

Once a waitlist is begun, CBS departments should give preference to students based on the following criteria in addition to the date they added themselves to the waitlist:

  1. Graduating seniors in the major who need the course to graduate.
  2. Majors in the department who need the course to stay on track.
  3. Graduating seniors in other CBS majors who need the course to graduate.
  4. Degree-seeking students in CBS or co-sponsored majors (BSE, Biology or Microbiology in CLA)
  5. Other degree-seeking students outside of CBS or co-sponsored majors
  6. Non-degree seeking students

Non-degree-seeking students

Departments monitor waitlists at least weekly during the regular registration period, and frequently enough afterward so that students can be added to existing sections rapidly. In some cases, additional sections may be added if possible. Students must check U of M email for updates regarding admission to waitlisted courses. Once a student receives a permission number he or she is given 24 hours to use it. If it is not used within 24 hours, it is given to the next student on the list.

What is the likelihood of getting in from a waitlist?

In many cases, students have a good chance of getting into a closed class from a waitlist, especially if they added themselves on or after their registration date and listed several sections that would fit their course schedule. Departmental staff and/or waitlist coordinators can confirm that a student is on the waitlist, but can NOT disclose the student’s position on the waitlist.