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Waitlisting for Courses

What does it mean?

Many students have faced the dilemma of a “Closed section” during registration. A closed section previously would mean a student would need to either select an alternate section, or select a totally different class or worse, go without taking any classes at all.

PLEASE NOTE: Not all classes use waitlisting. Some classes are program restricted and will remain that way for the duration of the registration period. Additionally, being placed on a waitlist does not guarantee you a seat in the class. Waitlists do not carry forward to subsequent semesters.

By waitlisting for a class, students are responsible for checking their KPU email every day to see if they have been offered a seat. It does not cost anything to be on a waitlist and it does not count as a registration.

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What will I see during registration?


The following flow chart illustrates the steps that students take during the registration process; this includes the possibility of being placed on a waitlist.


If the section is full, you will not be able to complete the “Register” box of this diagram, instead, you will receive a “Closed Section” error message. If waitlisting is available on this class, you will then be given the option to add the status of “Waitlist/waitlisted”.

PLEASE NOTE: In order for you to be placed on the waitlist, the section must have previously reached its maximum enrollment. Once a seat becomes available in a section, you will receive an email to your KPU email account.

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How do I know if a class has a waitlist?


You can tell whether or not a class has a waitlist available by checking the “Search for Classes to Add” menu item through the Online Registration menu. There are three columns to help you know what your registration options are.


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How do I place myself on a waitlist?


When you attempt to register for a class that has no seats remaining and has waitlisting available, you will be given a “Closed section” error message. From the Registration menu, in the Add or Drop Classes page, click on the “Action” drop down menu, and choose Waitlist/Waitlisted.


Click 'Submit Changes' at the bottom of the page.

You will then be on the waitlist and you will be able to see your waitlist priority for this class by going to the “Student Detail Schedule” in the Online Registration menu.


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Can I place myself on more than one waitlist?


You may be on numerous waitlists, however, you cannot be on multiple waitlists for the same class, and, you may not be registered in a class and be on the waitlist of a different section of the same class. For example: you cannot be registered in ENGL 1100 S10 and be on the waitlist for ENGL 1100 L10.

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Do I have to have the prerequisites before being placed on the waitlist?


The simple answer is “yes”. If you are planning on obtaining a prerequisite waiver for a class, you must have that waiver in place before you can waitlist and/or register for the class.

If you are taking the prerequisite in the current semester for a class you wish to take in the next semester, we will allow you to register/waitlist until we receive your final grade. If your final grade does not meet the listed prerequisite, you will be removed from the class if you are currently registered; or from the waitlist if you are waiting for a seat.

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Can I place myself on a waitlist if it is a time conflict with my registered classes?


Yes, you may waitlist for a class that does not fit into your currently registered classes, however, if you are offered a seat, you must correct the time conflict before you will be able to register for the waitlisted class.

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Can I place myself on a waitlist if it is my 3rd time taking the course?


No, KPU does not allow students to waitlist or register for courses for the 3rd time without an approved waiver. Waivers can be obtained through Academic Advising. Please note that a "W" grade counts towards an attempt. Information about this process, including the waiver form, can be found on the Advising website at Repeat Course Requests. Advising typically takes 5-7 days to process these types of requests, so make sure you plan ahead if you are in this situation. Students will be allowed to place themselves on a waitlist once they have an approved by an advisor.

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How do I waitlist for a class that has a lab component?


You must waitlist for the lecture component of the class. When you receive a notification email saying there is a seat available in the lecture, you must change your status for the lecture to “Register/Registered” (DO NOT PRESS “SUBMIT CHANGES”) and search for a CRN for the available lab portion at the same time. Once you have entered the lab CRN and selected a status of “Register/Registered” for both the lecture and the lab, press the “Submit Changes” button at the bottom of the “Add/Drop Classes” page.

PLEASE NOTE: If the available lab does not work with your schedule, you must alter your schedule or drop your waitlisted class. You may add yourself back to the waitlist, however, you will be placed in your new priority order. There is no guarantee as to which lab may become available.

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How will I know if there is a seat available?


Seat notifications are sent out as soon as a seat becomes available. They are sent out based on the priority of the students on the waitlist. Each student who receives a notification will be given twenty-hour (24) hours to either, complete their registration into the offered seat by selecting “Register/Registered”, remove themselves from the waitlist by selecting “Drop/Deleted”, or do nothing at all. If you do nothing at all, you will not be sent any further notification and you will be removed from the waitlist. Subsequently, the next student on the priority list will be sent a notification.

It is extremely important to check your KPU email account every day to ensure that you do not miss your email notification.

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What happens when a new section is added and a waitlist exists?


Students currently on an existing waitlist for the same course will be added in priority order to the new section's waitlist. Students will not lose the priority for the section they were originally waitlisted, rather, they will be allowed to be on both waitlists until such a time that they receive a seat offer, or register.

PLEASE NOTE: Students not wishing to be on the new waitlist, please be courteous to your fellow classmates and drop yourself from the new waitlist.

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Notification Email


Seat offers for waitlisted courses are made through email notification to your KPU email account so it is important to check your KPU email frequently. The time duration for taking up the seat offer is short and the offer must be acted upon quickly. Below is a sample email that you could receive showing the expiry date of seat offer:


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I have a notification email, now what?


  1. Login into your Online Self-Service account.
  2. Select Student Menu > Registration > Add or Drop Classes. From the “Action” dropdown menu, choose Register/Registered** or "Drop/Dropped" to remove your name from the waitlist.

NOTE: If you are registering for a class with a lab component, be sure to choose both the lab and the lecture CRN before hitting the ‘Submit Changes”.


Click 'Submit Changes' at the bottom of the page

If you fail to take action, you will automatically be removed from the WAITLIST on the deadline outlined in your notification email. You WILL NOT receive a notification of this action.

If you no longer wish to be on a waitlist, please be considerate and remove yourself from any waitlists you are no longer interested in so that other KPU students may have a chance at the seat.

If you DECLINE the offered seat, and prefer a different seat in a different section of the same course, be sure to put your name on the appropriate waitlist.

NOTE: This email is the ONLY notification that you will receive from us regarding the availability of a seat in a class with a waitlist. It is important that you take responsibility for your own registration in the class.

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What do the status messages mean?


Once you have attempted to register for a class, the Online Self-Service system will display one of four status messages on your registration screen.


  1. Closed- ### Waitlisted (In this example, there are no seats for registration and the waitlist has nobody on it.)
  2. Open- ### Waitlisted (If you received this message, there is an available seat for registration, however, it has been offered to someone on the waitlist.)

Your only option is to place yourself on the waitlist. Any available seats have been offered to students already on the waitlist, and you must get in line for other seats as they become available.


  1. Closed – Waitlist Full (There are no available seats for registration or waitlisting.)
  2. Open – Waitlist Full (There is an available seat for registration, however, it has been offered to someone on the waitlist. The waitlist is currently full.)

You have no option for waitlisting or registering. All available seats on the waitlist have been taken.

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When does waitlisting end during the semester?


Students can add themselves to the waitlist for a class until 24 hours before the close of online registration. Waitlist offers will continue to be sent to waitlisted students until 24 hours before the close of online registration.

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Important things to remember


  • Make sure you have the published prerequisites for your desired classes before registration begins.
  • Make sure you have no holds on your account as they will prevent you from registering or placing yourself on a waitlist. 
  • You will only receive one email notification of an available seat. You must be sure to check your KPU email on a regular basis, or you will miss the chance to get a seat from the waitlist. If you miss your chance, you can place yourself on the waitlist again, however, your priority will be at the bottom.

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