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It’s that time of the year again. Yes, Thanksgiving and Black Friday, but also the dreaded week of Spring course registration. Despite having 24 more credits since the last time I registered for classes, I face the same dilemma: watching the classes/sections I want agonizingly be filled until my time slot. I’m scheduled to register Wednesday, November 18th, and I’ve already set up three plans on the course registrar in myNortheastern and transcripted detailed backup plans in my Notes app. Some may say I’m preparing for an apocalypse— in hindsight, they’re not wrong— but the anxiety surrounding course registration is one that can never be forgotten. 

Whether you’re new to the course registration process or a veteran schedule planner, here are the five stages of course registration.  

Determining what classes you need to take

One perk of being a combined major is that although there may be more pre-reqs/credits to fulfill, you have a much more structured plan for the next 4 (or 5) years. Fortunately, at the start of freshman year, my academic advisor supplied me with a (mostly) definitive 4-year plan. While I’ve ultimately modified this spreadsheet since acquiring it, it’s become somewhat of a holy grail this past year in terms of deciding what classes to take each semester. Albeit, dropping out of my Management Information Systems after the first day did put a roadblock on my Fall 2020 plans when I spent several hours researching what I could replace it with having pre-reqs already completed.

Nonetheless, determining what classes you need to take for the upcoming semester is the most significant feat in the course registration process.
 

Making plans and researching professors

It’s the week before registration and you’ve received your time slot. Regardless of what it may be, it’s best to have set plans in mind. One thing I can positively admit of Northeastern’s process is the (fairly) new addition of “Plan Ahead”. Originally, students had to scramble to type in CRNs (course registration numbers) during their time slot but, around three years ago, Northeastern enacted a schedule builder to allow students to build up to three potential plans for registration. This made the process significantly more seamless as, upon time for registration, students know exactly what sections relate to what schedule and the process can be done in a click of a button.

In terms of researching professors, you’re either one of two people: RateMyProfessor or TRACE. In all honesty, I’ve used both and I say to take each medium of review into consideration. The professor you choose may make or break the class.

The week of registration

I like to call this part “anxiously waiting for your registration time as you watch your desired sections slowly fill up.” Unless you’re one of the lucky few who register on Monday, chances are you’re periodically checking on your class enrollments to ensure none of them end up full. The perfect schedule doesn’t exist, but you can constantly finetune your schedule in hindsight of roadblocks. 

Time (Read: Minute) to register

This is it. It’s finally 5 PM EST on Wednesday and you’re rapidly refreshing the “Register for Courses” tab in order for the “not your time slot” warning to go away. Once I was successfully able to click it, I immediately found my preferred plan and added all the courses. Truth be told, my heart was racing  in eagerness as I hoped all the courses I added didn’t fill up in that minute. Altogether, the process probably took me less than a minute but the planning leading up to it made it feel like an eternity.

Relief of getting into classes

You did it. Whether you were able to get into all your classes or had to tweak your courses a bit, it’s finally over. Give yourself a pat on the back and indulge yourself in the rest of midterms/finals season.

Good luck Huskies and have a great Thanksgiving break!

Sreya is a third-year combined computer science and business major. Prior to being Campus Correspondent/Editor in Chief from 2020-2021, she was an editor for Northeastern's chapter. Besides being part of Her Campus, she's also in HackBeanpot and Scout. She spends most of her free time watching cringy reality shows, scrolling through Twitter, and going to concerts.