How to cope with your unfortunate Phase I registration time

Zahira Chaudhry/File

So you’ve found yourself with an unfortunate Phase I time slot that’s a day behind all of your peers. Despite the alarms ringing in your head, there’s no need to panic. Things may be looking grim this week, but a month from now, we’ll all look back at this specific moment of sheer terror and laugh — right? Here are some things to keep in mind throughout your enrollment experiences at UC Berkeley, regardless of how bad it may seem to get.

Plan your schedule ahead of time

Make sure that you have your classes already in your shopping cart prior to your Phase I time. This isn’t a suggestion, but a must-do if you want to avoid spending hours to find your classes only to, unfortunately, miss your enrollment period.

Berkeleytime is your new best friend

Berkeleytime is an amazing tool to use when it comes to finding your classes for the upcoming semester. A lesser-known tool on the website that’s just as applicable to students is its ability to track the number of students who add a particular course during Phase I. Be selective about which classes you add during Phase I and Phase II. Only worry about the most important or popular courses during Phase I, which simplifies a lot of unnecessary concerns.

Don’t be afraid of the waitlist

Although the waitlist gets a bad rap around campus, if you go by the 10 percent rule, you should find yourself, at the very least, satisfied with your next semester class schedule. While it can’t be said for certain, if you’re No. 10 on the waitlist for a class with 100 seats, you should find yourself enrolled in the class if you wait long enough.

Continue to attend waitlisted classes

If you’ve found yourself stuck on the waitlist at the start of the semester, it’s important to remain calm. If you absolutely need this class, make sure you pick a discussion section with the smallest waitlist to increase your chances of enrollment. Students will likely drop from the class as the semester starts to get into the full swing of things, freeing up room for you. Email your professor or talk to the GSI during the first couple of lectures to see where your fate resides — demonstrating your interest in the course is always a bonus.

Take a DeCal to add a unit or two 

Being under units is a no-go. If you find yourself in desperation for just a couple more units to meet your college’s minimum requirement, take a peek at the DeCal website. There are tons of interesting courses you won’t find on UC Berkeley’s academic guide.

We at the Clog understand how frustrating it can be when the Phase I wave hits and things don’t go as smoothly as you would have hoped. However, one thing is crucial. Be optimistic, prepared and resilient because UC Berkeley’s course enrollment has a funny way of working in many students’ favors as the new semester nears closer and closer.

Contact Erika Lee at [email protected].