Many students on campus are frustrated after learning of a new
University waitlist policy. The changes, which might force students
to choose courses more carefully during registration, were detailed
in an e-mail sent last week from the Office of the Registrar.

Effective next Monday when registration for spring, summer and
fall 2004 terms begins, the former waitlist procedure has been
altered so students will be able to either enroll or waitlist in
only one section of a course during the same term.

Previously, students were able to waitlist and enroll in
multiple sections of a class, in the hopes of securing the most
desirable section.

Many students said they are upset with this change because it
will force them to make a decision whether to enroll in an
undesirable section — because it’s available — or
waitlist in a preferred section that may never open.

“I don’t like this change, I think it’s just
going to make it harder to get into classes,” LSA sophomore
Rupa Mehta said. “There are already a lot of people trying to
get into core classes, and they don’t make extra sections, so
this will just make everything more difficult.”

University Registrar Paul Robinson defended the decision, saying
in the long run the new waitlist procedure will benefit students
and staff because it gives them a better idea of what classes
remain open during the registration process.

“The practice of allowing students to waitlist in multiple
sections of the same course often resulted in an inaccurate picture
of enrollment and waitlist demand,” Robinson said.
“Before making this change we sought input from our academic
advisors and professionals in the Schools and Colleges. They
supported this change as it is believed doing so will be beneficial
to students as they enroll for courses.”

Communications Prof. Susan Douglas said the changes will help
professors and University administration, but she understands why
students are upset.

“I imagine most students won’t like this, but from a
professors point of view, especially in large lecture classes,
it’s often very difficult to know actually how many spaces
you have for students who are trying really hard to get into a
class they need. Also, for example, if a student is in one section,
but waitlisted in two, it takes faculty and GSIs a while to sort
through everything,” Douglas said.

“Before making this change we sought input from our
academic advisors and professionals in the Schools and Colleges.
They supported this change as it is believed doing so will be
beneficial to students as they enroll for courses.”

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