Wait List Information

What types of classes will not have wait lists?

During the Fall 2018 enrollment period, campus will be placing wait lists on (almost) all classes*. We would like to highlight some information that is pertinent to engineering students, and students enrolling in engineering classes.

*The following types of classes will not have wait lists added to them.

  • Independent study classes (including senior thesis and group tutorial)
  • Classes that require instructor permission (interview-only)

In all other cases, you should enroll on the wait list if the class is full. Please see the "How do you add yourself to the wait list for a class with a co-requisite lab?" section of this page for information about how to add yourself to the wait list for courses with required credit-bearing labs.

When can you add yourself to a wait list?

  • Wait lists will be added to classes during second-pass enrollment appointments. The first day of second-pass enrollment for continuing students is May 30th. The first day of wait list enrollment for new, incoming frosh and transfer students is August 13th.
  • Once your second pass enrollment appointment has begun, you can add yourself to a wait list at any time, until the wait list is closed. (This will not be before the first day of class.)

How can you find your second pass enrollment time?

  • Specific enrollment appointment days and times will be listed in the Student Center of your myUCSC portal. They are found in the Enrollment Dates box under your To-Do list. Please click on Details to see your specific enrollment times, as well as how many credits of coursework you can enroll in or wait list during each time.

How do wait lists work?

  • When students enroll themselves on a wait list, they will be given a wait list position number. The auto-enroll process will automatically add students to classes when spaces are freed.
  • The system will check prerequisites and class restrictions before allowing a student on the wait list. Students will be sent emails if they are successfully enrolled or if there is an error.
  • Students are limited to placing themselves on the wait list for a maximum of 10 credits of coursework.

What are important things to look out for in wait list enrollment?

  • If you have already tried to enroll in a class and have received an error message telling you that both the class and the wait list is full, the reason is because wait lists were not yet turned on.  You should attempt to re-enroll in the class during your second pass enrollment appointment in order to be added to the wait list.
  • If you initially attempted to enroll in a full class and you selected the "wait list if class is full" box, this will not add you to a wait list for this course until you try to add the course again when the wait list has been turned on.
  • If the system is unable to auto-enroll you in the class you have placed yourself on the wait list for, you will be passed over on the wait list. Some potential reasons for this may be time conflicts, going over your maximum number of credits for the quarter, or that the discussion section you have chosen is full,
  • When adding yourself to a wait list, you should choose a discussion section that is not full, or that is at a non-peak time to maximize your chances.
    • If you need to change the section you are wait listed for, you should call the Office of the Registrar at 459-4412.
  • You can add yourself to a wait list using the swap function if you want to be enrolled in a full courseload while on a waiting list.
    • HOWEVER- the swap function will NOT work if you are trying to swap out of a course with a required co-requisite (like a lab). Swaps need to be 1 class to 1 class, not 2 classes to 1 class.
  • You should still attend the first day of class, even if you are just on the wait list. 
    • Instructors may administratively delete you from the wait list if you do not show up.
  •  Wait lists are no longer in effect after the 8th day of the quarter, as this is when permission numbers are required for all classes.

Classes with Labs: How do wait lists work differently for courses with required, co-requisite, credit-bearing labs (ie. CMPS 12A and CMPS 12L)?

The official wait lists for courses with required, co-requisite, credit-bearing labs are based on the wait lists for the lab sections only. Students that are enrolled in a lab section will be given the opportunity to enroll in the lecture portion of the class. Please follow the instructions below to add yourself to wait lists for these courses. This information does not apply to the courses EE 103 and EE 103L.

1.  Wait list the lab section first.  Do not attempt to enroll in the lecture at this time; you cannot enroll in the lecture until you have successfully been enrolled in the co-requisite lab section.

Each of these labs will be listed as one main lab section with many options for associated secondary labs. In order to place yourself on the wait list for one of these labs, place yourself on the wait list for one of the associated secondary lab sections. You will only be able to place yourself on the wait list for one associated secondary lab per course.

Students will only be expected to attend the associated secondary lab that they enroll in to receive credit for the lab portion of the course.

2.  Enroll in the lecture portion of the course after you are enrolled in the lab.  Upon becoming enrolled from the wait list into an available lab, you will receive an email prompting you to enroll in the lecture.  You MUST enroll in the lecture or you will be dropped from the lab prior to the start of class. It is important that you wait until you have been enrolled into a lab to enroll yourself into, or add yourself to the wait list for, the lecture portion of the class. This is the only way that you will be able to set up this enrollment action as a swap with a backup course. If enrolling in the lecture would take you over your maximum number of enrolled units, or would require a swap to enroll, you would receive an error message or be passed over on the wait list. If you are enrolled into the lab portion of a course via the wait list, you will be given a space in the lecture.

What about students that do not meet the prerequisites for a class?

Students that do not meet the prerequisites for a School of Engineering class should continue to contact the instructors for a permission code.

Special note regarding CMPS 5J in Fall 2018

Due to high demand for this critical introductory major course, the Computer Science department will be manually managing the enrollment for this class, with priority going to students in the Computer Science and other BSOE majors.

Enrollment into any open spaces in this class will be handled via permission code.

In order to be considered for a space in CMPS 5J in Fall 2018, you must place yourself on the wait list for CMPS 5J.

Please do not contact the instructor or Undergraduate Advising Office directly to request a permission code.


Please also consult the Registrar's FAQ for more information about wait lists.

If you need assistance with adding yourself to a wait list, or have questions about the process, the quickest way to receive assistance is to come to the School of Engineering Advising Counter in Baskin Engineering rm 225 M-F during our open hours to speak to a Peer Advisor. If you are unable to make it to the office during these hours, you can send an email to advising@soe.ucsc.edu.