Class Registration Tips From a Senior

Spring is right around the corner (cross your fingers it comes sooner or later this year), and so are your next round of classes. I’ve always had an eye on the next semester because my classes as an art major usually are either in the fall or spring semester- never both. With that in mind, I’m ready when registration time comes each semester. As you get older, it’s also nice because your time ticket moves up a few days every year. With all that being said, I have a few words of advice that might help you organize your schedule, and let’s be honest, your life too.

1. Speak With Your Advisor

Perhaps this goes without saying, but it’s crucial to know what required classes you should be taking. In addition to your core classes, you should also be ticking off those pesky general education requirement classes. If you’re cruising through your sophomore or junior year, perhaps it’s best to check out your DARS report instead of getting a checklist from your advisor. However, it’s always helpful to go and ask about a particular class or if your major offers an opportunity to study abroad.

2. Plan Ahead

On UIUC’s self-service platform, under Registration & Records, there are two ways to navigate registering for classes. My personal favorite is using Enhanced Registration because it’s a cleaner and more updated design that shows all the ways you can access your current and past schedules. You can also look up new classes and plan your future schedules all the way through senior year! The last couple semesters I’ve used this because I’m so close to graduating and I know exactly what classes are offered when and in what semester I need to take them. Even though the system and the professors don't know what time and where the class will be held the following year, it gives you a potential idea of a schedule if you’re anxious (like me). 

3. Be Aware of Your Time Ticket

This can be done before or after planning ahead. I’m always on the lookout for future classes, especially outside of my major because I enjoy learning other subjects, so I note classes down when I find the description interesting. Of course, to look for classes you go to courses.illinois.edu. When looking for your time ticket and where you can start registering for classes the following semester, go back to the Registration & Records tab of UIUC’s Self-Service platform mentioned earlier. In this case, the Classic Registration or Enhanced Registration link work both ways. Under Classic Registration, you will find your time ticket information under the tab that says "Registration Eligibility." Under Enhanced Registration you would click on "Prepare for Registration" and choose the upcoming semester. We all should have received an email by now that shows your time ticket. In the spring, we are usually notified by the end of March. Like I mentioned earlier, time tickets vary on your academic standing, whether you have financial holds on your account and your level in school. 

4. Registration Time

When the time comes, you can go into the Plan Ahead tab and directly register from the plan you created. Instead of searching your classes one by one, choose the upcoming semester and register all at once. Have a great next semester!

Photo credits: Catherine Bixler