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The Hoya Way to Register for Courses

Course registration is unnecessarily stressful, especially with the infinitely confusing website that Georgetown somehow still uses: MyAccess. This guide has compiled everything you need to know about the necessary preparations and tools that you need to get yourself in the best position when your time slot comes up. This THW guide is made for freshmen or transfers, but returning students might still find some new tips that they didn't know before!

Step 1: Figure out what requirements you need to fulfill

The best way to do this without needing to open dozens of tabs across different departmental websites is by using MyDegree through CyAccess. To find this go to MyAccess > Student Services > MyDegree

On this website, you can type in your intended major, minor, and degree and see what requirements you need to fulfill before you graduate. You should also be able to see what requirements you've already completed with IB or AP credits.

Step 2: Make a list of the intro level courses you want and need to complete your first year

This list will usually include courses like Problem of God, Writing and Culture, Micro + Macroeconomics, Prosem and Map of the Modern World (for SFS students), etc. These are the courses you usually want to knock out as soon as possible so that you can take more interesting higher level electives and courses in the same subject areas. Your academic dean and student advisor will usually offer some recommendations about what courses are best to take in your first semester before you get to campus.

Step 3: Go on classy by the Corp and Coursicle to see what courses are happening this upcoming semester

Some courses, even requirements, aren't taught every semester. Looking at these two websites will help you narrow down your list from Step 2 and see what courses are actually possible for you to take this semester.

Step 4: Create a new schedule on Coursicle and add in the "Non-Negotiables"

Since some language courses and requirements only have one section, add these to your Coursicle first so that you can build the rest of your schedule around them.

Step 5: Use MyAccess to find what courses fill what requirements

There are several requirements like the "HALC" requirement or the "Science for All" requirement that can be met by many different courses. The best way to find these is by using the course catalog on MyAccess (MyAccess > Student Services > Registration > Schedule of Classes).

'Command + F' and 'Command + A' are going to be your best friends here. Under subjects click on any option and then 'Command + A' to select all subjects. This will help you search across all courses without worrying about which subject the one you're looking for falls under.

To search for the courses that will satisfy a certain requirement, you will need to make a selection under the attributes section. To quickly search through these simply 'Command + F' and search for the course attribute (For example, "HALC" or "Science For All"). Once you select that, click the Class Search button at the bottom and you will see a full list of courses that will satisfy that requirement.

Step 6: Research the professors using Course Eval and Rate my Professor

For the remainder of your courses from the Step 2 list, look up the name on classy's search bar and click on "More Info" for any of the course sections. On the left hand side, you'll see an info bar that links you to the professor's Rate my Professor page as well as links to the course evaluations of all professors for that particular course.

For example, this is what comes up when I search Problem of God:

When you click Course Evaluation, login to MyAccess when it prompts you, come back to the classy page and then click again on the course evaluation link. Something like this should pop up:

The names in blue in the first column are the names of different professors. The most important columns to look at when you're doing your initial research is the "Hours spent studying" column, and the "Overall evaluation of instructor" column (the closer to five the better).

Depending on what you personally want to prioritize in importance, you can use a mixture of these numbers, RmP reviews, and the course descriptions to figure out which sections you want to try registering for.

Each time you find a section that you are interested in, find the course on Coursicle and add it to your schedule

Step 7: Figuring out the last few credits

So now, you've probably got 10 or so courses on your Coursicle schedule that you'd be happy taking. Now, it's just a matter of figuring out how the puzzle pieces fit together. Just make sure that none of the courses overlap because even though we all aspire to be Hermione Granger, MyAccess will not let you register for a course if you have a time conflict.

Don't worry if it looks something like this:

Once you've created your ideal schedule (one that will sadly probably not look like the one you'll ultimately have), click on each course and scroll to the bottom of the course description to copy down the CRN code for the course section. This is the code that you will use to register on the day of.

Step 8: Backups, backups, backups

I'll tell you from experience that you need backups, especially if you are trying to get into courses with professors that are highly sought after. Make sure to write down the CRNs of at least 3-4 alternatives for the courses you are less likely to get into. This step is super crucial because you don't want to waste valuable time during your time slot looking for a new course if you wind up not getting into the one you wanted.

Okay, so it's course registration day, now what?

  1. Make sure that you've completed all the necessary steps and forms on the registration page way before your registration slot.

  2. Make sure that you have your list of CRNs, prioritized from hardest to get into to easiest to get into, handy on a document or sheet so that you can easily copy paste them in.

  3. Log in to MyAccess at least twenty to thirty minutes before to check how many seats are remaining in the courses that are the hardest to get into. You don't want to waste precious seconds trying to register for a class that was already full by the time your slot began.

  4. PRO-TIP: when entering the CRNs while registering, do each course one by one. Instead of wasting time pasting four or five codes into each slot before submitting, paste one in, click submit, and then copy-paste the next one. This will help you save precious time for those courses that only have a few seats left.

That's it! It will definitely feel overwhelming, but I promise you that everything has a funny way of working itself out. Remember, take a deep breath, stay calm, and good luck!

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