Registration isn’t fun, but having to constantly check the status of a class during add/drop may be worse

Emily Caldwell

Some classes never use waitlists, making registration for these classes during the add/drop period an absolute nightmare. Now imagine if you could receive automatic notifications when the status of the class changes from open to closed or vice versa. Suddenly, everything would be a whole lot easier. 

In order to get into a class without a waitlist during the add/drop period, students have to routinely check the course schedule and wait for the class to open, seemingly at random — if it does at all. Some students simply don’t have the time to participate in this tedious and time-consuming monitoring, even if they really need the class. UT should develop a system that automatically notifies students of any changes in the statuses of classes during
add/drop periods. 

Bryson Greenwood, a computer science and math sophomore, has had to continuously check the status of a class without a waitlist during the add/drop period on more than one occasion and has even missed getting in to one of the classes he needed as a result of this
awkward setup. 

“In my experience, it’s extremely stressful to hinge my degree completion on such an unreliable system,” Greenwood wrote in
an email. 

Students shouldn’t have to go through this unpredictable process just to get the classes they need. However, Greenwood believes the development of a system that could monitor the statuses of these classes during add/drop and automatically notify students of any changes is certainly possible.

“It could be structured in many ways, perhaps as an alert email or as a full-scale phone application that sends push notifications when classes are available,” Greenwood said. “Making a third party application to serve this purpose would not be exceedingly difficult, however it could be made much easier with support from the University.”

Bethany Bell, an assistant registrar within UT’s Office of the Registrar, echoes this notion — without support and attention from the University, it would be hard to achieve any sort of major change to the registration process. 

“I could tell you all day long, ‘This is wonderful,’ or ‘Wow, this is really thoughtful,’ but it comes down to the University prioritizing it,” Bell said. “Once that support is there, then that whole process of reviewing it and considering it will definitely happen.”

No matter how it may be framed, it’s time UT restructures the registration process. During the add/drop period, students shouldn’t have to keep their eyes glued to the course schedule for an unpredictable amount of time to get into a class they may need to graduate. It’s a waste of time, thoroughly unpredictable and not guaranteed to work. It’s time to fix this kink in the system.

Caldwell is a Latin American studies and journalism sophomore from College Station.