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Registration FAQs

Please click on the links for the answers to these frequently asked questions. If you have additional questions, please feel free to contact the registrar’s office (registrar@colgate.edu or 315-228-7676) and a staff member will be happy to assist you.

General Registration Questions


How will you register for your fall courses?
The registrar's office provides an online registration form. After reviewing the course offerings in the first-year registration booklet, you complete and submit the online form to indicate your preferred and alternate classes. The registrar's office staff uses your form to register you for your fall courses. Please see the First-Year Registration booklet for more information (booklet sent in mid-June).
How many courses will you be registered for?
First-year students will be registered for four full-credit courses. The normal course load is 4.00-4.50. If none of your courses has a lab, your course load will be 4.00. If one or two of your courses has a required lab, your course load will be 4.25-4.50.

It is recommended that you also register for at least one PHED unit in addition to your four academic courses. PHED units do not carry academic course credit. Sign-ups for PHED units occurs at the beginning of the semester. Please see the physical education web page for more information.
How do you indicate which lab section you prefer?
A number of courses (particularly in the natural sciences) have required laboratory sections. The labs are designated by the course number followed by an L (e.g., CHEM 101L is the required lab associated with CHEM 101) and, in most cases, carry 0.25 course credits. On your registration form, indicate the section of the course in the "Sec" column and the section of the lab in the "Lab Sec" column. Sometimes the course section and lab section will be the same and sometimes they will be different, depending on the number of offerings and the time of the sections. If a course does not have a lab, leave the "Lab Sec" column blank.
3 Dept Course # Sec Lab Sec Course Title Days Time
Preferred CHEM 101(L) A B General Chemistry MWF
(M lab)
8:20-9:10
(1:20-5:20)
What is a cross-listed course?
A cross-listed course is one that is offered in two or more departments or a department and a program. Regardless of how the student is registered, they will be in the same course. Depending how the course is cross-listed will determine if the course counts toward a specific graduation requirement. Courses that are cross-listed between a department and a program will fulfill the area of inquiry associated with the department. Courses that are cross-listed between two departments or a department and CORE are determined by how a student registers for the course.

For example, ALST 228 and HIST 228 are cross-listed. Whether a student registers for the course as ALST or HIST, the student will be in the same course. Regardless of how a student is registered (either ALST or HIST), the student will acquire one course credit towards the Social Relations, Institutions, and Agents area of inquiry because ALST is a program, therefore going with the history departments association.
In another example, MATH 102 and CORE 143 are cross-listed. Whether a student registers for the course as MATH 102 or CORE 143, the student will be in the same course. If a student registers for the course as MATH 102, the student will acquire a course credit towards the Natural Sciences/Mathematics area of inquiry requirement. If a student registers for the course as CORE 143, the student will acquire a course credit for the Core Scientific Perspectives requirement.

If you have any questions about registering for a cross-listed course please feel free to contact the registrar’s office.
When will you know which courses you have been registered for?
In early August you will be able to view your schedule through the Colgate Portal. An e-mail will be sent to your Colgate address when schedules are available.
Will you have the opportunity to change your course schedule?
You will be able to make schedule changes during the drop/add period in the fall. This will be after you've had the chance to meet with your FSEM instructor/adviser during orientation. You will receive an e-mail with detailed drop/add information before the start of the term. No schedule changes will be made during the summer.
What happens during the drop/add period?
During the drop/add period (August 27 - September 8), you will have the opportunity to make changes to your schedule. Any open courses may be added online using Banner Self-Service. To add any course that is closed or restricted, you will have to obtain the instructor's signature on your drop/add schedule and bring it to the registrar's office for processing. All drops may be processed using Banner Self-Service, or you may come to the registrar's office. On the first day of classes (August 28), you will have the opportunity to attend classes you may be interested in registering for, and if necessary, speak with the instructor regarding permission (instructor's signature) to register for the class. More information regarding drop/add will be emailed, and available on the drop/add web page, closer to the fall term.
What if I want to take five classes my first (or second) semester?
First-year students are expected to take 4.00-4.50 course credits (four full courses) and may only deviate from this plan with the permission of Dean Low. You may speak with Dean Low regarding your desire to add a fifth course when you arrive on campus in August. First-year students will not be registered for five courses during the summer.
What if a class is in the Catalogue, but not in the FY registration book? Can I take the course?
The University Catalogue lists all courses offered in each department. Not all courses are available each semester. You should select courses available to first-year students from the First-Year Course Registration booklet.
Why are some of the courses in the registration booklet showing as waitlisted or closed in the course offerings posted online? Can I list these courses on my registration form?
Incoming first-year students should choose courses from the course listings indicated in the First-Year Course Registration booklet. Many courses have seats specifically reserved for first-year students. If a course appears in the first-year registration booklet, you can list it on your registration form, even if a course appears full or waitlisted in the course offerings posted online.
I submitted my registration form online, should I also mail a copy?
If you submitted your registration form online you should have received a confirmation e-mail to the e-mail address you provided on the form. Please do not mail another copy to the registrar's office.

If you faxed your registration form, we suggest you e-mail (or call) to confirm that we have received your form, but please do not also mail a copy.


Course Placement Questions


Are you interested in an introductory Biology course without a lab and do not have a score of 4 or 5 on the AP biology exam?
If so, register for BIOL 101.
Are you interested in Biology and prefer to start above the 100 level?
If so, register for BIOL 211/211L.

Note: this course does not assume that you have taken AP biology; whether you have or not, it will challenge you in understanding concepts in evolution, ecology, and diversity and their applications to questions and problems relevant today.
Do you have little or no prior chemistry instruction, but wish to take a chemistry course?
If so, you are eligible to register for CHEM 101 S/101L. Section " S" of CHEM 101 is a special section for students with little or no prior chemistry instruction.
Did you successfully complete a full year of calculus in high school?
If so, you are eligible to register for MATH 112 or 113.
Did you complete a course preparing for AP credit through the calculus BC exam, but you did not take the AP Calculus BC exam, or did not score high enough to receive Colgate credit?
If so, you are not eligible for Colgate credit.
You are eligible to register for MATH 113.
Are you interested in a non-calculus introduction to physics or are you interested in physics but do not intend to major in physics?
If so, register for PHYS 111/111L, a non-calculus introduction. Note: PHYS 111/112 cannot be counted toward the major in physics, astronomy-physics, or pre-engineering.
Are you interested in an introductory calculus-based physics course? Have you received credit for MATH 111 or will you be registering for it in the fall?
If so, register for PHYS 120/120L.
Note: You must have received credit for MATH 111 or be registered concurrently for it (or a higher level calculus course).
Did you have a substantial introduction to computer science but did not take the AP exam, or did not score high enough to receive Colgate credit?
If so, you are eligible to register for COSC 101/101L, but consult with the department chair about appropriate placement when you arrive at Colgate.
Do you have more questions about course placement not addressed here or in the Registration Booklet?
Feel free to e-mail the registrar's office (registrar@colgate.edu) anytime or call (315-228-7676 or 6493) during regular business hours (8-noon, 1-4).