Course Waiting List Policy

Course enrolment limits are essentially of two types. The first type is simply the capacity of the lecture room or laboratory in which the class is scheduled to meet, and can only be increased by relocating to a larger room (which may or may not be possible). The second type of limit is one which is proposed by an individual course instructor or by an entire discipline, and approved by the Dean for pedagogical reasons. Raising this type of limit (assuming that the room capacity would allow this) requires the agreement of the instructor or the discipline responsible for initially establishing the limit.

In particular, an individual course instructor may not override a discipline-established limit without the approval of the discipline, except that such instructors may, at their sole discretion, authorize an enrolment increase of:

  1. up to 2 students for limits of 25 or less;
  2. up to 3 students for limits of 26 to 50; and
  3. up to 4 students for limits greater than 50.

The waiting list policy outlined below has been adopted to ensure that, when enrolment limits are increased for any reason, students will be added to course sections in a fair and equitable manner.

  1. Students who attempt to register in a course, and who discover that the course in question is “waitlisted”, may if they so desire place themselves on a waiting list. All waiting list entries are automatically date-stamped, i.e. students are placed on the list on a first-come, first-served basis.
  2. When a waiting list leads to the creation of an additional course section, students shall be contacted by the Registrar’s Office and offered a place in the new section in the order in which they appear on the list.
  3. The class list that is available to instructors shall include the number of students on the waiting list. At their discretion, and subject to both the capacity of the assigned classroom and, where applicable, the discipline-established limit outlined above, instructors may at this point inform the Registrar’s Office of the number of students on the waiting list which they are prepared to add to a particular course section. The Registrar’s Office will then contact students on the list, in the appropriate order, to offer them places. Instructors are not obligated to accept additional students at this time.
  4. When no additional course section is created but positions become available in an existing section (through other student withdrawals, relocation of the class to a larger room, etc.):
    • no student shall be offered a vacant position who is not on the waiting list;
    • vacant positions shall normally be offered to students in the order in which they appear on the list; this shall be done by the Registrar’s Office;
    • students not at the top of the waiting list shall only be offered a vacant position ahead of students above them on the list after successfully petitioning the Dean in writing, giving reasons why they should be given special consideration;
    • instructors may not grant permission to particular students on a waiting list to register; they are encouraged to inform the Registrar’s Office when spaces appear to be available or when they are prepared to take additional students; they should also inform students wishing to get into a full course or lab section that they must first get on the waiting list if they are not already on it, and that they may only “jump over” students above them on the list through a successful petition to the Dean;
    • instructors are discouraged from allowing students on the waiting list to attend classes in the hope that they may be permitted to register later.
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