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Archive for the ‘wait list’


why are there so many hunger games comparisons to u of t

Hey Aska how are you? I’m just not quite understanding the waitlist process. I was put onto a waitlist for my priority group which had a certain number spaces (all of which are full) but it seems that my rank has actually increased rather than go down since yesterday. Do you know why that is? Also when August 4th comes and the merging of the waitlist occur , are 4th years given priority , then 3rd and so on? Thanks a lot!



i’m good, thanks for asking. i feel like no one ever asks aska how they’re doing, so thank you kind asker.

i have no idea why your rank in the wait list went up, not down. i guess the only thing i could tell you is… well, sh*t happens? sorry there isn’t really a better explanation.

i do have an answer for the second part of your question! when august 4th rolls around and the priority drops, all the different wait lists will collapse into one and your position in the new wait list will be determined based on when you got into any wait list for the course. so, for example, if you were the third person to be in a wait list, regardless of your priority group, you will be the third person on the new wait list.

i hope this helps and i hope this makes sense (lol). good luck, course enrolment is hell.

may the odds be ever in your favour.

 katniss everdeen hunger games katniss hunger games s GIF




waitlists do not mean the end

Hi! I got accepted into Humanities at UtM, and although I have not yet accepted, I want to switch from Humanities to CCIT. However, when I went on my friend’s ACORN account, it said that the two pre-req. courses lectures had blocked enrollment. Can I still try to take those classes or will I be wait listed for a long time? 🙁

some lukewarm comfort

hey, I just got put in rank 9 in a waitlist of a first year class of a course i need with about 190 people. I was wandering if i should just wait it out or enrol in the a different lecture of the same course.

Thank you 🙂


hey there,

i feel for you, buddy. waitlists are truly one of biggest grievances that ACORN has to offer. checking your spot in the waitlist compulsively and having stress dreams about not getting into a course you would sell your left arm for are just some of the EXCITING ADVENTURES you can have while on a waitlist.

it’s not all doom and gloom, however.

the acknowledged wisdom when it comes to waitlists is this: if your spot on the waitlist is less than 10% of the total number of spots in the course, you have a reasonably good chance of getting in. since you’re within spot #19 in a class of 190, yeah, you’ve got a shot.

that being said, the lower the number of total spots in the course, the more iffy this rule becomes. for example, if there are 10 people in a course and you’re #1 on the waitlist, it becomes a lot less certain that one of those ten people is going to drop the course.

a class of 190 people is kind of on the small side*, and so the 10% rule is a little bit shakier in this case. if there is another lecture section you can enrol in, i would do that, just to be safe.

best of luck with it! i hope you get a spot! and i hope that all the rest of you noodles aren’t panicking too much about your course enrolment. just breathe. it’s going to be alright. i’m almost certain.



* i recognize the absurdity of a class of nearly 200 people being “small,” and yes, i realize that this is oh-so patently uoft. what can i say? you like small groups of people? leave the downtown core.


how to say waitlist in robot

Hi, so I thought I wanted to do life sci but now I want to switch to comp sci, and course registration is coming up. Comp sci kids have priority for those courses so i cant register until august 5. What is the likelihood that i wont get those courses by then? Is there anything i can do cause i know that i dont want to do life sci for sure so itd be a complete waste of a year if i cant get those comp sci courses. Should i just register for life sci courses right now and wait until august 5th to try to sign up for comp sci courses or try contacting the comp sci department? I’m so worried cause I dont want to waste an entire year! your insight would be greatly appreciated!


hey there,

assuming you want to do a computer science specialist, there are five (half-year) courses you’re going to need to get into for your first year. lucky for you, TWO of them (MAT135 and 136) include life science students in their priority. that means you’ve only got three courses to worry about: CSC108H1, CSC148H1 and CSC165H1. and yes, ALL of them only prioritize first-year computer science students. and yes, if you don’t take CSC108H1, you can’t take the other two, which have 108 as a prerequisite.

HOWEVER. the department knows that incoming computer science students are not the only people who will be taking these courses. aside from people who want to get into the program, you have upper-years who need to repeat them, and people taking the courses for general interest. so they make a LOT of lecture sections. and yes, most of them will fill up quickly with first years, but that doesn’t mean you’re entirely out of luck.

bulldog comforting

if you feel lost in the days leading up to course enrolment, remember this bulldog

all the lecture sections of CSC108, combined, make space for 1160 students. that is several times the number of students who are accepted into the 1st Year Computer Science stream every year. it’s a similar case for CSC148 and 165, though obviously there are fewer spots in those because not everyone will take/pass CSC108, and so not everyone will be able to take the follow-up courses.

so yes, you do have a chance of getting into these courses, even if you have to wait for the priority to lift. you may have to wait list, you may not get into your ideal lecture sections, but it’s not hopeless.

that being said, i would strongly recommend having backup courses, not just in case you don’t get into the computer science courses (though that is a valid concern), but also in case you take the courses and don’t get into the program, or you decide you don’t like them and want to go in a different direction.

phoebe pla

don’t be phoebe on course enrolment day. have a plan A. have a plan B. have a plan everything-is-going-wrong-but-i’m-gonna-save-the-day-at-the-last-minute (also know as plan EIGWBIGSTDATLM)

even if you do get into all the computer science courses you need, you will have space left over in first year to take courses other than computer science courses, so take advantage of that! explore the calendar, take chances on courses that intrigue you, and remember that no matter what happens, it’s not the end of the world.

and p.s. you’re never “wasting” years. university is complicated and hard and whether it takes you four years or six or twenty, it’s all good!




good news for once

Hey! I’m ranked #2 in a waitlist for a class that has 350 students. Is there any chance that I’d get in before September 20?


hey there,

the general rule of thumb is that if your spot on the waitlist is within 10% of the total number of spots in the course, you have a good chance of getting in.

now, if you put your impressive, university-level analytical skills to work, you may notice that the number 2 is less than the number 35, which in turn is 10% of 350. so yes, you will probably get in.

ooh! nothing like a little bit of math on a friday to put a spring in aska’s step.




open sesame

hey, I was wondering what the chances of uoft (at both utm and st. george) opening up another section of classes if there is a big waitlist number of students are. At utm, I have encountered this happening before where they opened up more sections to accommodate the large waitlist. It would be great if they consider this, would save a lot of the poor souls such as myself from anxiously waiting.



hey there,

i have never heard of that happening. that could mean either that i just have never heard of that happening, OR that it is more common at UTM than at UTSG.

honestly, i would just call the department and ask them if this is something they would consider, or if it’s something they’ve done in the past. like i said, i’ve never heard of that happening, but hey – i don’t know everything.

i mean, i know a lot. but not everything. alas.




the wait list is a merciless, unpredictable deity

Me again, the one waiting to be accepted with a tutorial conflict. Do you have an idea of when I should expect to hear whether I’ve been accepted or not?


hey there,

accepted into the lecture, you mean? assuming you’re waiting because you’re on a wait list (as opposed to having applied for the course directly to the department) you’ll just have to keep checking back on ACORN; if you get in off the wait list, the course will move from the ‘Waitlisted’ header to the ‘Currently Enrolled’ header.

you’ll only get in if enough people ahead of you drop out, so there’s no way of telling when that might happen. you just have to keep checking and pray to your gods of choice that you get in.

if it’s not a wait list you’re talking about, and you’ve applied directly to the department to get into a class, then you should contact them to ask about the status of the course.



P.S. this a follow-up question to a previous post which can be found here.


i mean, if you’re #4 for a class of 10 people…

I’m on the waitlist for a course, at 4th rank so I’m assuming that’s good? But since I’m not in the course yet, is it acceptable to still attend the lecture?


hey there,

you can definitely attend the lecture if you’re not enrolled yet. hell, you can attend lecture if you’re just some rando off the street looking for a place to sit for a couple of hours (assuming the class is big enough that the instructor won’t take attendance). this is a public university, you know – you can just wander in and out of the buildings. that’s how i got this job. i just walked in and started acting like i knew the place. i’m not even a student here.

your likelihood of getting into the course off spot #4 on a waitlist all depends on how many total spots are available in the course. if your spot on the waitlist is within 10% of the total number of spots, then you have a very good shot of getting in.

and unless you’re trying to get into some teeny tiny, specialized seminar on the anatomy of marsupials native to southwestern Australia, or something, i’m guessing your rank is a pretty good one. (not like me; i’m spot #2 on a waitlist for a class of 8. i don’t know why i’m even holding out hope.)

keep checking your status on ACORN, and if you don’t get in by the time class starts, feel free to keep going until you’ve run out of options for getting into the course (i.e. trying to enrol after the waitlist drops).

hope you get in!



war is hell…and then there’s course enrolment.

I’m a first-year, and to be honest during our course enrolment on July 30, as a first year, I didn’t understand why people were freaking out about course enrolment in general. It’s August 7 today, and I think I understand now why upper years compare it to the hunger games. Anyway, moving on with my question… I got waitlisted for two courses that I really need (both fall and winter bios). If I’m ranked 17 and 26 right now… please be honest with me… do I have any chances of getting in?


hey there,

it all depends on the course size. the rule of thumb is that if your spot on the wait list is within 10% of the total number of spots in the course, you have a very good chance of getting in.

if by “both fall and winter bios,” you mean BIO120 and BIO130, that means you’re 17 on a wait list for a course of 1520 students and 26 on a wait list for a course with 1324 spots. that puts you at 1% and 2%*,respectively.

which means you’re probably getting into the courses. but, you know, never say never – it’s a good idea to have backups just in case. i wouldn’t tear my hair out over it – plenty of time for that when midterms roll around.



* these were supposed to be milk puns. i’m not so sure they work.


wait list bsnss

Hi there! I just enrolled for my courses, but unfortunately one of them was full so I got waitlisted for the lecture. I’m number 6 on the list and it’s not a required course so I’m not that worried but there’s no waitlist for tutorials and there are no more tutorials available for the course….what should I do?


hey there,

ahh, waitlist time. isn’t it just the darndest fun? love waitlists. love ’em.

the best thing to do would be to contact the department. see if there’s a possibility of getting into the tutorial (on Blackboard, perhaps) after the class starts.

if you get into the lecture, it’s possible that you might be able to back-door your way into the tutorial, depending on the course. BUT the department will know for sure, so i would beg desperately on your knees ask them politely about it.

best of luck,



waitlists (DUM DUM DUM)

I’ve been waitlisted for courses that I need to take, that my program requires. What do I do?


hey there,

not much you can do at this point, friend. just get on that waitlist and hope for the best. rule of thumb is that if your spot on the waitlist is within 10% of the total number of spaces in the course, then you’ve got a decent chance of getting into the class.

if there are other lecture sections that are maybe less ideal but still have spots open, you might want to rejig your schedule to make room for them.

finally: come up with backups. once you’ve gotten into as many required courses as you can, you might have to resign yourself to the fact that you’re just going to have to take a few courses in the summer or next year, and take some backup courses this year.

once the waitlist drops (on September 21st for F-section courses if you’re at UTM, which i’m gonna assume you are, based on when you sent this question), keep checking ROSI in case some space opens up. with any luck, a couple people will decide that The Regional Geography of Urban Hipsters in Midling Sized Cosmopolises* is not AT ALL what they wanted, and some space will open up when they drop the course.

best of luck to you, my friend,


* note: not a real course.


your ranking swings both ways

Hey aska! Hope you’re enjoying/enjoyed the holidays!!! 😀 I just have one silly little question for when you get back: if my rank on a waitlist keeps decreasing, does it mean that people are dropping out from the course or the waitlist?? Thanks!


hey there,

thanks! i hope you enjoyed your holidays too. i spent my holidays riding those rad inter-dimensional waves and breaking the light barrier. i had the sniffles, though, so. it can’t be all candy canes and sugar plums.

as to your question: it could be either one. people dropping out of the waitlist or out of the course will have the same effect.

i hope you got in the class, my friend.




if the first four people on the waitlist were to “disappear”…

Sorry to bother you, but I’m currently 5th on the waitlist (out of 240 spaces) for a lecture that I really need to be in (CSC148H1S).
I understand that being in the top 10% of the people in the course gives me a good chance of getting in, but I can’t be too sure. So I was wondering how fast the waitlists move around the first week of Winter classes (or in the first week of semesters if it’s too specific), based on my current situation.
Many thanks!


hey there,

i mean, not only are you in the top 10% of the class size, you’re in the top 2%. you’re playing with some nice odds there.

i know it seems frustrating now since the waitlist is NOT MOVING AT ALL OH GOD, but it will move in the first week. especially considering this is a first year class, and so a lot of people won’t know what to expect from it, a lot of people are gonna drop it after the first class.

oh no,” they’ll say indignantly after the first half-hour of lecture. “this is not at ALL what i signed up for.”

in fact, i’ve heard stories of people up and leaving classes at the break, not even staying for the whole first lecture, going straight home and dropping the course right away. trust me, it happens, and it’ll happen for CSC148.

so yeah, have a backup because that’s just good sense, but i’d say your chances are pretty good.



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