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Enrollment — Frequently Asked Questions

How do I enroll in or add/drop classes?

How to enroll in and add/drop classes is outlined on the Enrolling in Classes page.  You can also view these basic video tutorials:

Do I have to enroll and add/drop online?

Yes, if you are in any of the undergraduate colleges or the Graduate School, all requests for the following semester must be submitted online. One general exception is permission only courses where you must get the instructorís permission and signature on the paper form. Please check with your college registrar's office for possible college specific exceptions and to pick up the paper form.

What if I can't get in to enroll or add/drop classes?

  • Look at the Holds box on Student Center home page. If there is a hold, click on “Details” then click on the “Hold Item” link to find out what you need to do to clear the hold.
  • Your college/advisor can set the “Eligible to Enroll” flag to NO. If they do this, it will appear as a “No Enrollment in Classes” hold on your record, making it necessary to see them before you can enroll in any classes both during enrollment and the add/drop period.
  • If there are no holds, check the Enrollment Dates box on Student Center home page to be sure you’re in the right time period. If your enrollment appointment is incorrect, please contact your college registrar's office.

How do I search for classes in Student Center?

  • Click on the green "Search for Classes" button from the Student Center home page or choose the Class Search tab if you are already looking at your enrollment.
  • Select the appropriate term from the Term dropdown and click the green "Go" button.
  • Select the Course Subject from the dropdown; enter a course number for a narrow search, or leave it blank for a broader search; the Course Career dropdown refers to the Career of the course (for example, if you are an undergraduate looking for a course in the Johnson School).
  • The fastest way to enter classes once you start enrolling is to have the Class Number for all the classes (lectures, discussion sections, labs, etc.) you want to take. You can find this in parentheses after the section number, i.e., Section 001-LEC(1008) in Student Center and in the Course Roster.
  • Be sure to review Class Notes for requirements, deadlines or fees.

The class search function in Student Center will help you find the most accurate listing of classes being offered for that semester. Be sure to explore the Additional Search Criteria to narrow your search.

View the video tutorial "How to Search for Classes in Student Center."

How do I add a course that requires permission?

If you need to add a course that is listed as "by permission only," contact the department or instructor to see if you can use a permission number in Student Center (Permission Nbr field on the Enrollment Preferences screen in Step 1) or if you need to use paper.  If you need to use paper:

  1. pick up the paper add/drop form from your college registrar's office
  2. complete it and obtain the required approval/signature/stamp
  3. return it to the your college registrarís office for processing.

Remember that you are not in the course until the paper add/drop form is processed by your college registrar.

Are my enrollment requests saved when I exit Student Center?

Any classes you add to your shopping cart (Step 1) will remain there during your enrollment period. However, until you complete all three steps for all classes your requests will not be submitted and you will not be enrolled in anything.

Can I change my schedule once I have submitted my choices?

Yes, you can log in as many times as you like as long as your faculty advisor has granted you permission and you are within your enrollment appointment time or the add/drop period to make changes. At the end of the period you will not be able to make changes. You MUST make credit hour changes by the deadline to add courses (end of the 3rd full week of classes) and grade option changes by the end of the 7th full week of classes.

How do I swap classes?

Swapping classes ensures the class you want to add is open before dropping you from the class for which youíre already enrolled.

  1. Go to Student Center > Add a Class > Enter Term > Swap Classes tab.
  2. Select the class from the drop down menu that you want to swap from.
  3. Select the class you want to swap to (either by entering the class number or searching).
  • If there is only one component, itís very straightforward.
  • If your class has multiple components, you MUST enter the class component you wish to swap to NOT the one you are already enrolled in or you will receive an error message indicating a duplicate entry.
  • If you search, make sure you select View All on the results of the search. This will allow you to see all sections and components of the class you are swapping to.

Example
You are currently enrolled in CHEM 2070 - Lecture 001 / Lab 401 / Discussion 204. You only want to swap the lab so that you will be enrolled in CHEM 2070 - Lecture 001 / Lab 402 / Discussion 204.

You must select CHEM 2070 Lab 402 first. Then you will be prompted to select a lecture and discussion. At that point you can select the same sections in which you are already enrolled.

Is there a wait list for classes?

A limited number of classes have online wait lists. If that is an option for a class, you will see it once you have selected the class and are taken to the Select a Class to Add Ė Enrollment Preferences screen above the Permission Number field.  You can also review whether or not a waitlist is set up for a class by viewing the class section information.  Under Class Availability, see the wait list capacity item.  If there is a '0' there is no waitlist.  A number indicates a waitlist for the class.  

If you find you are closed out of an Outdoor Education class, they would like to hear from you and put you on a wait list. Contact Outdoor Education (255-6183 or e-mail COED@cornell.edu) and let them know your name, ID number, the course you would like to take, phone number and e-mail address.

How do I enroll in or add/drop my First-Year Writing Seminar (FWS)?

To enroll in a First-Year Writing Seminar, go to: www.arts.cornell.edu/knight_institute/fws/index.htm for instructions and access to enter your ballot.

During the add/drop period, you can change your FWS through Student Center. From the search screen, click on “Additional Search Criteria,” then choose “FWS Session” from the “Session” field. This will show you all open FWS classes. You can only be enrolled in one FWS at a time.  In order to add a new one you will either have to use the Swap function or drop the class you're enrolled in to add the new one.  

What is the deadline for course add/drop?

The course add deadline is the 15th calendar day of the semester and the course drop deadline is 7 weeks from the beginning of classes. JGSM, Law and Vet students need to check with their colleges. Continuing Education and Summer Sessions, the Department of Athletics and Physical Education, and First-Year Writing Seminars may have different course enrollment policies and deadlines. Exact dates are posted on this site each term.

How do I enroll if Iím off-campus?

Student Center is a web application. If you have an internet connection, you can enroll in classes 24 hours a day during your scheduled enrollment period or during the add/drop period.

Enter your classes online. Be sure to complete all three steps or your advisor will not be able to view your classes. E-mail or phone your advisor that your requests have been entered. They can view them via Faculty Center. They should inform you of any changes necessary. If your advisor is on leave, or otherwise unavailable, please contact your college registrar.

Common error messages on the final screen for adding and dropping classes.

ERROR MESSAGE
WHAT IT MEANS
You cannot add this class due to a time conflict with class XXXX. Select another class. Systematically, you are not allowed to enroll in two courses that meet at the same time. If this is not a mistake and you need to be enrolled in those two classes, contact your college registrar’s office to determine how to proceed.
Available seats are reserved. Reserved seat requirement not met. Student not enrolled. Available seats are subject to reserve capacity requirements. This course is limited to a certain group of students—for example, A&S students. If a course has a reserve cap associated with it and you don't meet the requirement, you will not be allowed to enroll.
Unable to add this class - term maximum exceeded. Adding this class would exceed the maximum number of units or courses allowed for this term. Individual colleges set a limit on the number of credits a student can take in a given semester. Some colleges may allow you to petition to exceed your maximum credits for a semester. You should see your college registrar’s office for petition forms.
Instructor Consent Required. You must obtain permission to take this class. If you have a permission number, click fix errors, click the class link, enter the number and resubmit. This class is limited to students with permission of the instructor. You should see the instructor of the course for a permission number. Once you have obtained the permission number, you will be able to enroll.
Department Consent Required. You must obtain permission to take this class. If you have a permission number, click fix errrors, click the class link, enter the number and resubmit. This class is limited to students with permission of the offering department. You should see the offering departmental office for a permission number. Once you have obtained the permission number, you will be able to enroll.
Class XXXX is full. You have been placed on the wait list in position number 3. The class you are attempting to enroll in has reached its capacity.
Class XXXX is full. If a wait list is available, click Fix Errors to return to step 1. Click the class link, select the wait list option and resubmit your request. The class you are attempting to enroll in has reached its capacity. If there isn’t a wait list available you should contact the offering department. They may or may not have a departmental wait list available.
You are already enrolled in this class. Multiple enrollment for this class is not allowed. You are currently enrolled in the class. If a course is not set for multiple enrollments in a term, you cannot enroll in it twice.
You are already enrolled in this class. Verify you are using the correct class number and term and resubmit the request. You have already enrolled in this course. Double check that you have entered the class number and term correctly. If you are concerned about your enrollment status, contact your college registrar for verification.
Class XXXX is full. There are currently no seats available and the wait list is full. This class and its associated wait list is full. Students who are still interested in enrolling should contact offering college or department.
The permission number entered is incorrect. Verify that the number you entered is correct or that the permission has not expired. Permission numbers are student-specific and will not work for two students. Be sure you have entered the permission number correctly. Contact the instructor/department for a new permission number if the permission number has expired or has been duplicated.
You are unable to add this class at this time. Adding this class would exceed your course limit for this session. Individual colleges set a limit on the number of courses a student can take in a given semester. You may petition to exceed your maximum courses for a semester. See your college registrar’s office for petition forms.
Class Number XXXX: Not in Active Status. Cannot Enroll. The add transaction was not processed. The class to be added is not in 'ACTIVE' status for enrollment. You are attempting to enroll in a course that has been cancelled. Contact the offering department or instructor with any concerns.
If you receive an error message not included here and you don't know what it means, please contact the Student Center Helpline at 254-4795 or e-mail coursenroll@cornell.edu.

Contact Information

Office of the University Registrar
B07 Day Hall
Cornell University
Ithaca, NY 14853
(607) 255-4232

Hours
Mon-Fri 8:00-4:15

Questions?
Email us at: univreg@cornell.edu.