Picking courses can sometimes be overwhelming and you might encounter barriers to taking a course you want.

Learn how to create your schedule each term and what to expect depending on how you started the SDS program. Keep scrolling for some possible reasons why you didn't get into a course and see if there are alternative methods to getting in.

Making your Schedule

A complete breakdown of this process is provided in the PDF below. 

Review the Important Dates website to see course selection and add/drop time-periods each term.

What to expect if you are a new...

First-year student

(direct from high-school)

  • Visit Your First Year in SDS to see what courses you'll be taking (assumes full-time load of 5).
  • Core courses are automatically added to your schedule and ensured to be conflict-free.
  • You must pick your ARTS 130 or 140 course + 1 elective course each term.
    • It's your responsibility to ensure these do not conflict with your core courses.
    • 1A term (fall) - you will choose your 5th elective through an online course approval form in the summer.
    • 1B term (winter) - you will follow the normal process to choose your 5th elective in the fall.
Second, third or fourth-year student
  • Courses are not automatically added to your schedule. You will follow the normal process each term.
  • Ideally take SDS 250R in Fall and SDS 251R in Winter of your 2nd year.
  • Everything else you choose to take to complete your schedule each term is up to you! 
    • Ensure you are tracking any remaining SDS degree requirements and any requirements for other plans you have (e.g. specializations, minors, double majors, etc.).

Online student

(non-transfer)

  • Courses are not automatically added to your schedule. You will follow the normal process each term.
  • If you are admitted after key course selection periods, be flexible in what you take for your first term. You'll have more opportunity to get into desired or required courses for the next term.
    • e.g. Fall 2019 course selection occured in May and the add-period started in mid-July.
    • Some courses may be full if you were formally admitted after this time.
    • However you'll have the same chance to participate in Winter 2020 course selection as all other students do!
  • SDS offers enough online courses to satisfy both minor and major requirements.
    • NOTE: Courses are not guaranteed to be offered online every term, and may be offered through Renison or main campus.

Transfer student

(online or on-campus)

  • Courses are not automatically added to your schedule.
  • For your first term as an SDS student, review our Course Selection for Transfer Students page to learn what's required. Then follow the normal process.
  • If you are admitted after key course selection periods, be flexible in what you take for your first term. You'll have more opportunity to get into desired or required courses for the next term.
    • e.g. Fall 2019 course selection occured in May and the add-period started in mid-July.
    • Some courses may be full if you were formally admitted after this time.
    • However you'll have the same chance to participate in Winter 2020 course selection as all other students do!

Why didn't I get into a course I wanted?

Course selection is where you can indicate you want to take a specific course without knowing full details. It gives you a higher chance of getting in, but enrolment is never guaranteed.

If you don't see a class you picked in your term schedule, consider the following:

  • Scheduling conflict with your other courses
    • This might happen as you pick before knowing when courses are offered
    • Check the schedule of classes and be sure to use it when planning your course selection 
    • Sometimes the system will keep you in program-required courses and bump you out of conflicting electives
  • Missing prerequisites or already took an antirequisite
    • Confirm requisites in the undergraduate calendar before you pick courses
    • Prerequisites are courses that must be taken before other courses
    • Antirequisites are courses that cover similar information, but you cannot take both
  • Reserved seats
    • Sometimes a class has reserved seats for those in specific majors, term levels, etc.
    • The schedule of classes will show you reserves
  • The course is full 
    • Quest does not always accurately indicate if a class was full and is now running off a wait-list
    • All full Renison courses use wait-lists to fill spots that arise when a student drops a course
    • Wait-lists are accessible on Renison's home page when the add-period starts each term
  • The course requires a separate application
  • The course is online
    • Online courses won't show in schedule format, but will in list-format

Can I get into the course another way?

NOTE: Renison courses do NOT use permission numbers or overrides like main campus can. SDS advisors and faculty do not have the ability to add students into courses

  • For full Renison courses (including SDS):
    • Add your information to the waitlists. If space opens up the registrar's will contact you to confirm your interest and manually slot you in
    • FYI: Most times you see a "department consent" error in Quest for a Renison course, it means it's actually full!
  • For full non-Renison courses:
  • Keep an eye on the course you want. Spaces may open up if:
    • Reserved seats are dropped closer to the start of term 
    • Other students drop the course 
  • Try adding other courses or swapping courses during add-drop period.
    • The first chance you can do this is during your designated online appointment time 
    • If you are enrolled in a course you don't need and want to add an available course in its place, be sure to swap the course out. This will keep your current enrolment until a successful swap occurs (important for funding!) 

I'm still stuck - what should I do?

  1. Review the How To - Choose Courses for the Next Term document if you haven't done so.
  2. Review any previous e-mails you have had with your SDS advisor. If you’ve already been given the answer in a previous e-mail, your request will be given lower priority.
  3. Check out the  SDS current students website or Undergraduate Calendar – you may find an answer there.
  4. If you still don’t have an answer, e-mail your advisor with your question.  We may be able to answer quickly or set a time to meet, but we will still need time to review your records.
    1. Drop-ins and phone messages will be treated in the same priority as e-mail; they do not guarantee a faster response or availability.
    2. Please be patient as request volumes are high during course selection periods.