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What is a Course Waitlist?

Some SIU courses are set up by the department with a registration waitlist available to them in case the course gets full.  Therefore, if a specific course section in which a student is interested has enough students registered for it to be at its registration capacity, and that section has a waitlist available, then that student can choose to get on that waitlist.

Getting on a waitlist means that the student will be in line for a spot in that currently-closed section should an opening occur in the future (due to, for example, someone else dropping the class).  Having that option available allows the student to not have to log in frequently and check for any sudden openings in that section – and maybe miss any openings that did occur – so waitlisting can be a very helpful tool.

Waitlisting is available for courses in a number of departments.  Departments are not required to offer waitlisting on their courses, and those departments that do so may offer waitlisting on only a portion of their courses.  In addition, there is no guarantee that a course section with a waitlist will even have any openings in the future, or that such a section will have enough openings in the future to benefit all of the students who may be on the waitlist.

The bottom line is that a course that is full may never be available to an interested student, but a department that utilizes a waitlist and sees additional demand via the students on the waitlist may – if they have the ability to do so – decide to open up more spaces in response to that demand, so students should utilize a waitlist if they are truly interested in the course.