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What to Do If a College Class Is Full

Follow These 6 Tips to Imrpove Your Chances of Getting In

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Professor guiding his student
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The class you need to take to continue making progress toward your degree has already filled up by the time you register, even though you have to get in. While this situation is incredibly frustrating (and all too common), there are a few steps you can take to either get into the class or find an alternate solution.

6 Steps to Take If a College Class Is Full

  1. Get on the wait list as soon as possible. You can often do this at registration; the sooner you get on the list, the higher your ranking will be.
  2. Talk to the professor. Do you need the class for graduation? Are there other circumstances that might help you plead your case? Talk to the professor during his or her office hours to see if there's anything that can be done.
  3. Talk to the registrar. If you desperately need to get into a class for graduation or financial reasons, talk to the registrar's office. They might be able to make an exception if the professor also approves letting you into the class.
  4. Explore other options and alternatives. Sign up for at least one other class that you can take in place of your desired class, just in case you can't get in. The last thing you need is to be blocked out from all of the good classes because you thought you'd get into your wait-listed one.
  5. Have a back-up plan ready to go if you can't get in. Can you take the same course online? With another professor? At another campus nearby? Over the summer? Being creative about your options can help you be creative about a solution in case your original plan doesn't work out.

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