Preparing for Course Registration

This section of the guide will prepare you to register for fall semester courses. You are expected to explore course options for fall semester, place courses in your shopping cart, and have any questions addressed before the registration period (July 11-14) begins. Keep in mind that the staff in Undergraduate Studies is here to help.

Begin the process by reviewing the information below. Some of these items are addressed more thoroughly in other sections of the guide. Please refer back to them as necessary.

Explore your interests

Students enter their first year of college with varying degrees of certainty regarding their academic focus. However, many students will change their major(s) one or more times before they graduate. Interests will change as you have new experiences, are exposed to new ideas, and continue to develop as an individual. You are strongly encouraged to take courses in your first year that allow you to test current interests as well as explore completely new topics.

Consider non-academic commitments

It is important to find balance in your life. Make time for friends and family, daily tasks, and wellness (e.g. exercising or attending a place of fellowship/worship). If you will be working or commuting, you will need to set aside time for those commitments as well. Consider the amount of time you are likely to spend participating in extracurricular activities. Use this information to help craft your schedule and make choices about days, times, types of courses, and number of credit hours.

Consider the type of schedule that works for you

Are you most productive and alert in the morning, afternoon, or evening? Do you get bored after sitting for long periods of time? Would you do better with long blocks of classes or with small breaks in between each class? When would you like to have your classes, your study time, and your time to relax?

Keep in mind that you won’t always get your ideal schedule. Course availability and offerings can vary. It is best to remain flexible and always think of alternate courses or sections of a course (if available) to make the registration process easier.

Consider placement information and earned credit

You will want to consider the impact that placement exam results and earned course credit will have on your course selection. You should complete the math diagnostic, regardless of your intended major. If you plan to to take a course in Chinese, French, German, Russian, or Spanish in the fall semester, you should also complete a language placement exam. These exams can be found on the New Student Checklist. The results of these will help you understand the level at which you should begin your study of these subjects at CWRU. (Languages that do not have a placement exam have general placement recommendations listed here).

By now, you should have reviewed the AP/IB and evaluation of college credit items on the New Student Checklist. It is important that you complete these items to ensure that CWRU can receive and post your credit by the beginning of registration, especially if you plan on using this credit as a prerequisite for a course you wish to take fall semester. You can view the AP/IB scores that CWRU has on file for you on the New Student Checklist. Scores for AP/IB exams will not be available until after July 1. We will receive them electronically and post them as soon as they are received from the testing agencies.

You can review AP and IB placement information to get an idea of what credit you will likely receive. This will determine where you begin in course sequences or which courses will be available to you based on prerequisites. Note: If you choose to repeat a course for which you have already earned credit, you will forfeit the credit earned for the CWRU credit (i.e. you can only earn credit for a course once).

Review schedule development recommendations

Now that you have thought about your interests, commitments, and the type of schedule that will fit you best, you should start looking at sample first semester schedules. You should also review the following information:

Explore first-year course offerings

Now that you have an idea of what courses you will need and/or are likely to take, you should begin learning more about them. There are two tools that you will use to do this: 1) the Survey of Fall 2017 Course Offerings and 2) the Schedule of Classes accessed through the Student Information System (SIS). As you browse the first-year course offerings list and identify courses of interest, use the schedule of classes to review course descriptions and enrollment information, course prerequisites and co-requisites, and course days and times.

Use SIS tools to plan your fall schedule

In this section, you will find guidelines of how to use the schedule of classes in SIS and place courses in your shopping cart. The shopping cart is a tool you will use to help plan your fall schedule. You can place as many courses as you like in your shopping cart (e.g. multiple sections of a course or various options for a general education course). However, you will only be registering for three to four courses using SIS during the open registration period (July 11-14). Through the New Student Checklist you will indicate your preferences among the available SAGES First Seminars, also during the open registration period. You will learn in the course registration section how to indicate from the list of courses in your shopping cart the courses in which you would like to enroll.

A note about SAGES First Seminar

All first-year students will take First Seminar in the fall semester. In addition to regular meeting days/times, which will vary by First Seminar, every First Seminar will have regularly scheduled out-of-class activities that take place during fourth hour (Monday, Wednesday, or Friday from 12:45 - 2 p.m.). Because all students must have this time reserved in their schedules, we have put a placeholder on all first-year students’ schedules (FSCC 850). This placeholder is weighted the same (four credit hours) as your First Seminar will be, and reserves the fourth hour time block on your schedule. During the First Seminar placement process, this placeholder will be removed from your schedule and your actual First Seminar will be added.

Questions about course registration?

As you begin reviewing curricular requirements and course offerings, it is likely that questions will arise. This is your opportunity to begin exercising a skill that will serve you very well as a CWRU student: asking for help. The FYR guide will answer many of your questions, but keep in mind that the Office of Undergraduate Studies is here to help ( or 216.368.2928).