Friday, June 18, 2021

Waitlists: Updates, Tips, and Magical Solutions

Waitlists are an inevitable part of institute course registration. Courses fill. Sometimes very quickly. Oh how we wish they didn't need to do that! Run out of seats we mean. But if they must, then the answer lies in fair application and management of that sacred waitlist. 

So, each year we work to improve the process. We began with automatic waitlisting when a course fills. Then we added a Waitlist Summary view so one can see exactly where they stand. And a Waitlist Add/Drop option so one can manage their own updates. This year? Wow. Just wow!

We now have the perfect solution to an age-old problem: not being able to get back into one's order after being waitlisted to add a second choice course.

May we introduce the "delete order, start again" button. Really just another green "Register" button, but because of its particular usage and placement, it is so very magical! 

Please read on.

First, Don't Dawdle: During the registration process, you select your course, check all agreements, and then view a summary of your order. That word "summary" is a bit misleading. It is NOT final. It is only a chance for you to make sure you selected the right course and checked the right boxes. You MUST click "Next" for the order to be saved. 

Automatic Waitlisting: If you fill out the registration form and do dawdle on the summary page (consider yourself twice warned), it is possible the class will fill before you click "Next." The result? Someone quicker on the keyboard gets the course. They will go to the payment options page, and you will get this message:
Thankfully, the automatic waitlist feature will take care of you.  No change here, except we remembered to test it this week rather than take that functionality for granted :)

But, then the magic begins. In the past, if you wished to register for a second choice, you needed to work with the registrar. Nice guy, but on busy days, just not fast enough! Now, you just click on that bright green "register" button. In this context, that button erases your previous order (agreements, donations, etc. which are quite useless without a course) and takes you to the beginning of the form to start again. Naturally, you will want to continue to move quickly :)

Using the "Waitlist Add/Drop" Function. Should your second choice course also be full (greyed out on the form), then you should use the "Waitlist Add/Drop" function to add it to your waitlist choices. 

Words of Caution. When using the "Waitlist Add/Drop" function, please be sure of any decisions before saving changes. If you add yourself to a waitlist, remove yourself, and then re-add later, you have effectively lost your original date/time stamped entry and replaced it with a later one further down the list.

Need Help? If you have further questions or experience difficulties with your waitlist, please contact the registrar at Do that immediately, as the date/time stamp on your email will be used for any waitlist updates made by the registrar on your behalf.

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