ice of the Registrar

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Drop/Add Instructions for Students Fall 2016

You must enter your drop/add course changes in PeopleSoft, except where you need permission from instructors (closed, instructor or department consent, or override of prerequisites).

Add controls - some courses have an enrollment limit and/or an instructor consent flag.

  • To see if a course is available:
  • The easiest way to check a course status is in the online catalog. Drill down on a subject and then on Fall course offerings. The open(green circle icon) /closed (blue square icon) status displays to the right of the course section listings. If the course is Instructor or Department consent, 'Inst' or 'Dept' will display in the right most column.
  • If you are in PeopleSoft, you can also check the course status through the class search.
    • Navigate to Self Service>Student Center, and click Search for Classes.

    • Select Fall 2015 for the term if it is not defaulted.

    • Enter the course subject and number and click search. In the search results, check the open(green circle icon) /closed (blue square icon) status.  To check instructor consent, click the section link section linkand check for ‘Instructor Consent Required’ under the Enrollment Information section.

  • Course closed/No Instructor Consent Flag - very few courses are like this.  It’s worthwhile to check again later - as other students drop, the course may open.  It’s also worthwhile to contact the instructor or go to the first-class meeting.

  • Instructor Consent Flag - these courses may already have a waitlist - who may add will be resolved by the instructor at the first meeting. Many of these courses were overenrolled, some students have been dropped already and instructors may have a waitlist. Please keep in mind that space may not open up in some of these courses and you should have a back-up plan. Other courses may specify in the catalog permission of the instructor or department chair. To add the course, contact the instructor or go to the first class meeting. Note that organizational meetings are first class meetings. If the course was closed, it may be worthwhile to check again before the class meets to see if any spots have opened up. Check the catalog description for any indication of whether certain majors or class years get preference for slots available. Any adds allowed may be handled by e-mail notice from the instructor to the Registrar’s Office or by signed add cards; the instructor will let you know which.

  • Department Consent Flag these courses may already have a waitlist – the department office is coordinating adds to these class section.  Check with the department office to see if spaces are available.

  • Adding Closed or Instructor Consent courses.  Most instructors e-mail the Registrar's Office directly with requests to add students to closed or instructor consent courses. If an instructor does not e-mail, you may ask them to sign an add card which you must bring to the Registrar’s Office.  These cards are available from the Registrar’s Office.  Most instructors use e-mail rather than add cards.

First class meetings are important. Any courses that do not have a regular meeting on Thursday or Friday have a first meeting scheduled on Thursday evening, 9/8, or Friday, 9/9. These are included on your class schedule or the class search in PeopleSoft and in the online catalog and on the website classroom directory. For any course in which you are currently enrolled, if you do not attend the first class meeting, the instructor may drop you and give your space to another student. Instructors may also refuse permission to add a course if you have not attended the first class meeting. If you add a course online for which you did not attend the first class meeting, check with the instructor promptly to make sure you have approval to do so.  

Thesis and Independent Study. If you are adding a thesis or honors project, you need an e-mail sent to the Registrar's Office from the instructor you will be working with or from the department chair.  To add an independent study course 397 or 497 you need an independent study petition signed by the instructor and the department chair. Independent study petitions should be turned in to the Registrar’s Office. 

Multi-Sectioned Courses with Virtual Sections.  Some of the large multi-sectioned courses which need to limit enrollments per section have ‘virtual’ sections to accommodate section changes.  These virtual sections are indicated in the class hour directory and have a ‘V’ section number.

How to use the virtual section?  If you are adding the course, or need to make a section change, try first to add the section you want.  Checking the course status for open sections will be helpful.  If you can’t add into any open section, add the virtual section.  This at least gets you into or keeps you in the course.  As other students drop/add, closed sections may open; it will be worthwhile to check later to see if a space has opened up in a section you want.  Don’t be afraid to use the virtual section; if nobody moves, the section changes will gridlock. If you can’t get out of the virtual section into a real section:

  • ARTH 101 conferences - conferences begin meeting the first full week of class.  If you are still in the virtual section by then, attend a conference during the first week, even if it may not be the section you’ll end up in.
  • BIOL 101 lecture and labs - For lecture section A1 or A2, you should register for lab section A3-A6 or the virtual lab "V1".  For lecture section B1 or B2, you should register for lab section B3-B6 or the virtual lab "V2". If the lecture section you need is closed, you should attend the first class meeting you wish to be in and talk to the instructor about adding.
  • Labs - lab assignments will be sorted out during the first full week of classes.  Instructors may ask you to change lab sections to accommodate other students and to keep the sections balanced.

Multi-Sectioned Courses without Virtual Sections.
Smaller multi-sectioned courses also need to keep a reasonable enrollment balance between sections.  If a section you need to add is closed but others are open, check with the instructor about adding.   Instructors may ask you to change sections if your schedule allows and the section you are in has become overenrolled.  Instructors will sort this out during the first few class meetings.

Placement and Prerequisites - Please check the course catalog descriptions for prerequisite requirements.  If you think you may have the equivalent of a prerequisite in non-Williams coursework, you should discuss this with the course instructor or department chair.  Possible use of Advanced Placement test results is indicated on the Academic Progress Report.

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