Pre-Registration for Dummies

A How-To for Those who Have No Clue What They’re Doing

Step 1: Put off doing actual homework by scouring the hundreds of course offerings on C@B for way longer than necessary.

Step 2: Get so over-excited about every class you read about that you consider changing your concentration.

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Ch-ch-ch-changes: Courses @ Brown

There are a few things all Brown students can agree on. Meal plan makes no sense. BioMed windows are the best place on campus to check yourself out. The circle dance statue is weird. A quintessential fact-of-life for any Brunonian is that registration is a nightmare. We’re not just talking pre-registration, either. This goes way beyond that awful moment when Banner tells you the seminar you wanted to take is capped; no one likes searching desperately through Banner to fill up their cart, or staring at those awful red boxes that only serve to remind you how much choosing classes sucks.

The Registrar’s Office and the Office of the Dean of College have decided to make registering for classes slightly less painful by introducing the new course selection platform Courses @ Brown.

Check it out:

~sleek~

~sleek~

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Friendly Reminder: Shopping Period ends today

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“Wow, I love that we can access Banner on this shiny doohickey!” “I know! Technology these days! But why did we have to go to the Gap to do this?”

After a brief extension due last week’s snow storm, today is finally the last day of shopping period. Hopefully by now you’ve narrowed down from the 20 classes you had in your cart at the start of the semester. If not, the deadline to add a classes without a fee is today at 5 p.m. 

At 5 p.m. Banner will be taken down for an hour, at which point all course additions will require an instructor override and a $15 fee. The deadline to add a course with a fee, change from audit to credit, or switch between letter grade and S/NC, is Wednesday, February 18.

Happy last day of Shopping Period!

Image via Jokichi Matsubara ’18. 


FALL2014: Course Superlatives

FALL2014

We have reached that point in the year when no one pays attention in lecture anymore, but this week, it’s for an understandable reason: it’s preregistration time. Everyone is perfecting their Banner carts during class, and thanks to the creativity (or lack thereof) of many professors, browsing the Fall 2014 course listings is infinitely more entertaining than lecture. We present another round of course superlatives:

Most doable:
ENGL0910: How to Read a Poem

Most difficult to convince your parents to spend tuition on:
ENGL1511: Scandalous Victorians
MUSC0607: Old-Time String Band

Most likely to dissuade you from concentrating in the department:
ENGN0130: The Engineer’s Burden: Why Changing the World is Difficult

Most identical twinning:
BIOL1050: Biology of the Eukaryotic Cell
BIOL2050: Biology of the Eukaryotic Cell

Most likely to lead to a first date:
ENGL0510: Coupling: The Literature of Courtship Continue Reading


PSA: Drop everything. The courses are coming!

Screen Shot 2014-03-17 at 11.46.07 AMQuick! Stop doing work and start procrastinating by planning the work you (won’t) do in the future! That’s right: courses for Fall 2014 and Spring 2015 are now available on Banner. Start making that hypothetical schedule that you will inevitably deviate from in the trauma of the coming pre-registration and shopping period. Go here ASAP (unless you’re a senior, in which case you should probably just work on filling out this bucket list), and take a midterm break. Fall will be here before you know it, if Winter ever goes away.


(Campus)Lifehacker: Auditing classes

Science lecture

With a week and a half of shopping period done, you’ve probably figured out your classes… at least for the most part. However, you may have found yourself with a dilemma: What do you do if there’s a fifth class you really want to take, but just don’t have the time for? Consider auditing it!

The requirements for an audit are at a professor’s discretion, but for most courses, auditing consists of coming to all the lectures but not doing the homework or taking exams. You won’t get course credit towards graduation or concentration requirements, but the class will show up on your external transcript as an ‘Audit’ in order to acknowledge the time you devoted to the course. You’ll also have access to the course’s Canvas page, in case you want to check out the readings.

If you’re interested in auditing a class, talk to the professor to find out what they require of auditors. Don’t be afraid that the professor will think you’re lazy — on the contrary, most professors are pretty impressed that you are willing to show up every day even though you’re not getting a real course credit. If you proceed into the semester with five (or four) courses and then find yourself overwhelmed, rather than dropping a course, consider the possibility of changing your registration from credit to an audit. The deadline for switching to an audit is March 7.

Auditing can be a great way to get the most out of the courses Brown has to offer without overwhelming yourself. I am currently taking four courses and auditing a fifth, something I’ve done for the past five semesters. Without a doubt, several of my audits have been among the most educational class experiences I’ve had at Brown. You should definitely think about taking advantage of this unique opportunity.

Image via.