From the Editors’ Desk: Registration doesn’t have to hurt

Our advice on a smooth spring course registration


In case you missed the email from the Office of the Registrar sent out on Tuesday, pre-registration for Spring 2022 begins on Nov. 8. It’s that lovely time of year when students must process the upcoming semester just after situating themselves in the current one. But fret not; we at the Trinitonian, with many a Trinity semester under our belt, have some tips for class registration.
1. Actually talk to your advisor
And we don’t mean show up to a meeting with them intending to zone out their advice, say you don’t know yet what classes you’re going to take and walk out after five minutes. Brainstorm some class ideas before you go, and don’t be afraid to ask questions about Pathways requirements, your major or anything else that’s on your mind. Take advantage of their input, and if it sounds like bad advice to you, don’t feel like you have to follow it. Odds are, though, they can help provide structure and guidance as you navigate through your time at Trinity.
2. Take a class because it sounds fun (Bonus points if it knocks out a Pathways credit)
Going to a liberal arts college means there’s a lot going on, and classes from physics to theatre to history to international studies are accessible to all students. Some classes might seem like they’re so disconnected from your major that they’re not worth taking, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. It’s crazy how many connections you can draw between classes that, on the surface, have nothing to do with each other. Gaining exposure to a variety of subjects rounds out your learning in a way that’s not only advantageous in your future career, but is simply refreshing in your day-to-day class schedule. Pick one class that actually interests you, and even better if you can squeeze it in for a Pathways credit.
3. Keep an open mind when approaching Pathways
Not everything will float your boat, it’s true. Some requirements (looking at you, math) are just going to suck depending on what you’re interested in. But even if a class doesn’t stand out to you like those concerned in the previous point, you never know how you might enjoy a class until you take it. Hopefully, the plethora of options for each Pathways credit will allow you to narrow down your choices to one that sounds at least slightly less painful, but if slots are filling up fast, let yourself be open to snagging a class that wasn’t your first choice. Having a ranked list of backups can help you make this decision quickly.
4. Check for the availability of courses by semester
If you’re considering a class that’s important for your major, cluster or simply your interest, check how often it’s offered. It’s not uncommon to find a class that’s not offered every semester or even every year. If your time at Trinity is just starting, this might not be the biggest concern for you but say you’re a junior wanting to take a class offered every four semesters. If you pass it up in the spring, you won’t get the chance to take it again. The worst-case scenario is you save a class for later that never returns. You can sometimes find this information in the Courses of Study Bulletin, but don’t hesitate to email the professor of the class and ask if you can’t find it.