How to avoid registration nightmares


Cassie Labay/The JTAC

Simone Park prepares to register on the DuckTrax menu in MyGateway before the registration date.

Aside from finals week, registration day is single handedly the most stressful day of any college student’s life, because you never know what to expect.

To set the scene, you wake up bright and early, laptop in hand, eye boogers in your eyes. You wait as the minutes tick by and the time finally arrives, you go to hit the “register” key and suddenly, the internet crashes. Once it finally comes back up, you are stuck taking three classes rather than the six you had originally hoped for. Now what do you do?

Registration day can be intimidating if you do not properly prepare yourself for every possible scenario. First, you need to have your advising meeting and then you will need to mentally prepare yourself for the war path that is registration.

The best way to tackle your advising meetings is to be proactive every step of the way. By checking your Tarleton student email account, you can ensure that you will not miss any important information regarding advising meetings. Each student will receive emails as registration day approaches informing them on how to set up an advising meeting.

Advising meetings are one-on-one conversations held between academic advisors and students in order to plan the remainder of the student’s academic future. Advisors are there for you and the meeting is tailored to meet your needs as a student. Therefore, you should be prepared to discuss the future when talking to your academic advisor.

One common misconception students have, prior to entering an advising meeting, is that they are not allowed to communicate their concerns about classes they are scheduled to take. At the end of the day, you are the one taking the courses and if you feel under prepared for a specific course, you are allowed to communicate your concerns.

Ask questions and be honest about the way you feel, regarding certain classes, also know that you can contact your advisor at any point in the semester. If you ever feel as though the advisor you are appointed is not meeting your needs, you are allowed to request a new one that can better address the issues you may have.

“I took Anatomy II before I took Anatomy I and it brought down my GPA significantly. Advisors will advise you to stay in courses that you may need to drop in order to get the university more money instead of looking at how good or bad you are doing in the class. That being said, do not be afraid to listen to your gut. You may need to drop a class if you see fit but a lack of communication will lead to failed classes and stressful college nights,” second year Kinesiology major, Kellie Smith, said.

“On my first registration day, I had no issues! My roommates struggled a bit but my internet came right back on and I was able to get all the classes I wanted,”
education major, Ronique Caldwell, said.

Everybody’s registration experience is different, however, most students should expect to wake up by 5:45 a.m. in order to hit the registration button at exactly 6 a.m.

In order to register students must first login to MyGateway and click on the “student” tab. Next, click on the DuckTrax link and search “registration” in the search engine. Go to the “select term” tab and choose the desired semester. Once you have done that, proceed to the “schedule planner” tab and begin locating the classes you desire to take. Finally, add them all to your registration cart and get some rest.

The biggest mistake you can make is to wait until the last minute to add classes to your cart. The last thing you want to do at 6 a.m. is find all the classes you were advised to take. Not only are you half-awake, but you may struggle to pick a schedule that fits into your life and then it might be too late.

The best thing you can do is plan and prepare early. The amount of time between advising and registration is more than enough time to get your business taken care of. Waiting until the last minute is truly the biggest mistake any student can make.

“Just get it done as soon as you get advised. It makes the process much easier and a lot less stressful,” a second-year transfer, Adrianna Deleon, said.

One of the most important things to remember is that it may or may not work in your favor. Do not overwhelm yourself with high expectations of how your semester will go. We are all surviving a global pandemic, registration day will be a breeze. College is stressful enough as it is and with all the advising help you can receive on campus, there would be no reason to add registration day blues to the list. Whether you get the classes you want or not, throw yourself a mini party celebrating the fact that you are one semester closer to the rest of your life. College is a big deal and the little wins are still wins at the end of the day. Never let one 6 a.m. registration day ruin your next semester of college.

Communication is key, talk to your advisors and make it clear to them how you feel regarding your future. Get a good night’s sleep the day before registration. Make it an entire event for you and your roommates.

Be prepared for the worst, but hope for the best. You cannot control every contributing aspect that goes into registration day, but by knowing what to expect, you can better enhance how well your registration day works out. Always remember that college is designed to be the best four years of your life and you are the designer of your future. Never take classes that you are not fully prepared for, whether they require physical or mental preparation. It is your life, live it the way you want, by taking the classes you know that you can. Happy Registration Day Texans!