Avoiding Registration Frustration: How Preregistration Can Help Eliminate Registration Stress

by The Cowl Editor on November 21, 2019


Registering for classes can result in a lot of stress for students, as students must compete for limited spots in classes. Photo courtesy of Flickr.


by Julia McCoy ’22

Opinion Staff

Just the word registration makes Providence College students’ hearts race a little bit faster. The morning of registration is always tense on campus, as students wonder which of their fellow students were lucky enough to secure a coveted spot in the class that they desperately wanted to take.  

While core curriculum classes are bound to fill up quickly, students often have issues finding open seats in classes that are required for their major. The College should work to ensure that students are able to enroll in classes necessary for their major so that they can remain on track for their four-year plan.  

One of PC’s most important aspects of registration is the required meetings with advisors before registration. In addition to providing the Alternate PIN that allows students to register, advisors make sure that students are meeting the requirements of their major and are thinking about how to stay on track in the coming semesters. 

This aspect of registration is also integral to the four-year future planning that is necessary for study abroad and some majors with rigid requirements. Additionally, advisors play a key role in the preregistration process that is available for some majors. 

The College does a good job of combatting the stress of registration in some instances: most majors offer preregistration, which allows students who have declared the major to enroll in courses in their major before general registration begins.

On the benefits of preregistration, Abigail Pruchnicki ’22 said, “It’s allowed me to plan my schedule ahead more easily because I know what classes I am in ahead of time. That way I know to build my core classes around my major.”  

The security that comes from this process provides a significant benefit to those students whose major offers preregistration. Unfortunately, the College’s business school offers a variation on this process that is just as high stakes as regular registration. 

The Providence College School of Business has a large number of students, making it a competitive process to register for classes. Due to this, the school is unable to provide the same preregistration programs as majors like English or psychology. To their credit, the business school does offer registration for those who have a business major a week before registration. 

Unfortunately, however, this process provides double the stress on business students. When asked about the worries of this process, Kristen Moran ’22 said, “The business-specific registration provides about the same stress as regular registration. So many students are often competing for the same spots and it leads to a scramble trying to build our schedules around our second-choice classes.”  

Though preregistration for other majors is not always successful for students that are enrolling in popular courses, they offer an earlier notification of whether or not you have been enrolled in the desired class. Business students are not afforded this opportunity and have to have their back-up classes on a sheet of paper ready to try again once their ideal classes fill up.  

Since business students make up a large part of our student body, the College should figure out a more efficient way to cater to their scheduling. Business majors also often have a rigid course offering to be followed for the four years here. Due to this, students have extra stress placed on them to schedule their classes correctly. 

To change this problem, PC should consider allowing business students to preregister for at least one of their major-specific classes. This would allow students to find some security in their schedules for the upcoming semesters before the registration period begins.  

Though there is not much to do to change the actual registration process, it would help ease the minds of PC students to have some sort of comfort going into the class-wide registration day. Having at least one class secured could provide some stress relief.  

Students on this campus are stressed out enough because of class workload, especially during the time of registration. It would certainly help to have peace of mind regarding next semester’s classes while students are focused on the work of this semester.