Diligently watching the clock in the upper right corner of your laptop screen, you impulsively refresh your MyUSC webpage, preparing to click “register” the second the clock reads 10:00 AM…
You’re not the only Trojan in the midst of this dreaded time of the semester – class registration. Its reasonable to say that registering for your Spring 2017 schedule may be even more stressful than the content of the actual classes in your “course bin.” After all, this is what will dictate an entire semester of your college career. So many factors are considered when creating your schedule: class topic, GE and major requirements, course load, if you’re an early riser or a night owl, avoiding Friday classes, prioritizing social time, and more. It makes sense why you spend more hours manipulating your schedule on Web Registration, than studying for your upcoming midterm.
Whether you’ve already registered for your Spring 2017 schedule, or are anxiously awaiting your appointment, no schedule is ever set in stone, and can be altered with weeks into the spring semester. Checkout these tips and tricks to help you secure your desired schedule with ease.
Known Your Major/Minor & STARS Report
It may seem obvious, but make sure you’re fully informed of the requirements for your major and minor, and that your STARS Report is up to date. Prior to registering, create a four-year outline of all the classes you intend to take, making sure to note which ones are only offered in the spring or fall semesters. There’s no point wasting your brainpower or tuition on a class that won’t contribute to placing that USC diploma in your hand.
Be In The Clear
The moment the class catalog for the semester is published online, begin familiarizing yourself with the various options. D-clearance or pre-requisites may be required for certain courses, so making sure to schedule a meeting with your advisor days before your registration is crucial. It would be awful to be rejected the opportunity to register for a desired course because you weren’t cleared ahead of time.
Make Yourself a Priority
Believe it or not, participating in a certain activity at USC can get you early registration, and thus minimize all anxiety that comes with being just an “average” Trojan. Do your research and become involved on campus. Rumor has it that athletes, athletic trainers, athletic managers, student workers, and those with disabilities get special treatment. Or, you can just take full advantage of your USC education, and enroll in eighteen units a semester, making your registration date fall earlier than your peers.
Making A Schedule as Easy as 1,2,3
Avoid the hassle of overloading your “course bin,” and overwhelming yourself with a schedule that only shows red conflicting boxes, by using hackschedule.com. You no longer need to carefully scroll through all the class section times, trying to solve the puzzle piece of which classes will fit best together. Just type in the ID of your proposed classes, and count to three, and this website will generate all practical schedule combinations.
Pass Up THAT Professor
The quality of the class is fully dependent on the professor. When choosing classes, always search the professor on ratemyprofessors.com, a forum where previous students publicize all the deets about professors. Rankings are based on the class’s overall quality, class’s difficulty, professor attractiveness, and if the student would take the class again. If there are multiple professors offered for a course, stalking your options beforehand could be the difference between earning an “A” or “C” in a course.
Save Me A Seat
It can be a struggle getting necessary classes when you’re an underclassman, or have less units, because many of the classes have already been picked over by the time of your appointment. Reach out to upperclassmen, athletes, and friends who have an earlier registration, and beg them to reserve your class in their schedule. When, your registration time finally rolls around, they will “drop” the class, leaving an open seat for you. You might have to bribe them with money or treats, but getting to enroll in a class that is only offered once a semester for your major, is totally worth it!
Registration appointments are at the oddest time of the day. You might be crunching numbers in accounting, meditating in a yoga class, shopping for an invite dress, groovin’ at a party, or stuck in LA traffic. While it’s annoying to plan your day around a task that takes thirty-seconds, make it a point to be somewhere where there is reliable Wi-Fi…even more reliable than “USC Guest Wireless.” Until you have service, your schedule is non-existent.
Have A Back-Up in Your Backpack
Don’t forget there are hundreds of students with your same registration appointment, who are fighting to get into the same class. Prevent the panic when the last spot in your preferred GE 5 fills up seconds before you clicked “submit.” Have your second choice, or even third, ready in your “course bin,” so you don’t miss out on a chance to knock out those annoying GEs.
Keep Fighting For The “A”
If you must take a class for your major, or would prefer a different “discussion” or “lab” time, don’t settle with what you have. Students are constantly “adding” and “dropping” classes up until three weeks into the Spring semester. Also, there’s no loss in attending the first week of class, and asking the professor if he would be willing to add you to their roster.
Think fast, because the clock just turned 10:00 AM, and it’s time to “submit” the best schedule of your college career!