Registration and Course Schedule

You’ll register for classes two times each academic year.

Continuing students

All undergraduate and graduate students register through the MyColumbia portal during the preceding semester. Registration for the spring semester (including J-Session) begins in November. Registration for the summer and fall semester begins in April.

The 5 Steps to Prepare for Registration

Step #1: Review your account for assigned registration time and eligibility

Step #2: Review your degree audit and the Course Catalog for major requirements and degree planning tools

Step #3: Review the schedule of classes in

Step #4: Develop your plans and options for registration

Step #5: Utilize your resources to help with the process

Incoming undergraduate students

You’ll register for classes prior to your orientation session, with the assistance of your academic advisor. 

See Course Schedule

Nondegree Seeking Students

We do not offer orientation sessions for students that are not seeking a degree. Please utilize the resources on this page to learn how to register in the MyColumbia portal. We have prepared a video to guide you through the process.

Watch Registration Video

Waitlisted Courses

After a successful pilot in Fall 2023, we are pleased to announce that most courses are now waitlisted on the course schedule.

  • What is waitlist?

    Waitlist is an online registration process that enables you to record your interests in taking a class that is already full/closed.  By adding yourself to the waitlist, you are reserving an opportunity to register for the class, along with other waitlisted students, should a spot open.

  • How will I know when a spot opens in the course that I am waitlisted on?

    If a particular section does become open, you will receive an email stating that the section is now considered open. So long as you are on the waitlist, you can register for an open spot regardless of the order in which you joined the waitlist. The email runs nightly, so students are advised to actively check the portal for open seats periodically in case spots open up throughout the day.

  • How do I sign up for a class that I am waitlisted for that has an open spot?

    On your registration screen, select the radio button next to the course you have waitlisted and click on the “Add to Schedule” button to officially register for the course.


  • How do I drop a course that I am waitlisted on?

    On your registration screen, select the radio button next to the waitlisted course and click on the “Drop” button to officially drop the course.

  • What if the course I want doesn’t have a waitlist option?
    If the course you want is closed and does not have a waitlist option, keep checking the schedule to see if a seat opens up. Adding classes for the 15-week session stays open through the first week of the semester.

Registration FAQs

  • How long do I have to register?

    Registration closes at the end of the first week of classes of the fall and spring semesters. Summer registration closing dates are determined by subsession. 

    Once registration closes, you can no longer add classes or change course sections.

    For a full list of dates, visit our Semester Dates and Deadlines page. 

  • What if I'm having trouble logging into my portal?
    Please contact Client Services for help logging in to your portal.
  • What is a registration hold and how can I find out if I have one?
    A registration hold prevents you from registering. If you have a hold, you will receive a message through your student portal. 

    Registration holds include the following:

    Immunization Hold: You are required to submit immunization records. Please see our Immunization page for details, or contact a Columbia Central counselor. 

    High School Transcript Hold: You are required to submit your final high school transcript to the Office of Admissions, 600 S. Michigan Ave., Room 301.

    SAP (Satisfactory Academic Progress) Hold: You are out of academic compliance with Columbia’s Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy. Log into your MyColumbia account and complete the Satisfactory Academic Progress Notification process. 

    CAC (College Advising Center) Hold: You are required to meet with the College Advising Center to discuss your current academic status and the College’s Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) policy. To make an appointment with your Academic Advisor, log in to your MyColumbia portal or call the the College Advising Center's front desk at 312-369-7645. Students can also visit the College Advising Center as a walk-in during regular business hours at 623 S. Wabash Ave., in Suite 300.

    SFS (Student Financial Services) Hold: Your account is past due. You must either pay any portion of your bill that is not covered by secured financial aid or third-party payments, or establish an automated payment plan by the posted deadline. You can speak with a Columbia Central counselor for more information. 

    Dean of Students Hold: Please visit the Dean of Students Office at 623 S. Wabash Ave., Room 301, for more information.
  • How can I find my advisor?

    College advisors are assigned based on major and concentration. A college advisor is assigned to you when you enroll at Columbia, and the assignment may change if you change your major or concentration.

    You can see your assigned advisor's name in your academic record in the MyColumbia portal. 

  • How do I drop or withdraw from a class?

    You can drop or withdraw from a class through your MyColumbia portal. Withdrawal dates for each semester can be found on our Semester Dates and Deadlines page. 

    If you're having trouble dropping or withdrawing from a class online, you can visit the Columbia Central office. 

  • What if I want to change my major?
    To change your major, visit your college advisor. Please note that it is not necessary to update your major prior to registering for classes. 
Academic Dates and Deadlines