The joys of a fresh semester: reconnecting with friends, choosing between two menus at each meal...and not getting into a class you need? Though these first couple of weeks are free of the stresses that build throughout the semester, scheduling complications can persist for a few weeks into the term. The problem, inevitably, is any of the following: a course isn't what you thought it would be, you are on the waiting list for one class but need to attend another to cover your bases, or you want to move into a new class that meets at the same time as one you're already enrolled in—but don't want to risk losing your secured spot if you can't get into your preferred choice.
We understand that professors want to finalize their rosters as quickly as possible in order to move ahead with course material, but substantial assignments given early on hinder the feasibility of utilizing the add/drop period. Though we don't expect a reprieve from work altogether, we ask that our professors consider that we may need some time to finalize our course schedules.
In addition, we propose that on the first day of class, each professor briefly review his or her course expectations and syllabus, dismiss the class without finalizing a roster, then wait for other interested students who are investigating their options. This solution eliminates the dilemma faced by students who are choosing between two classes that meet at the same time. Though this proposal demands the patience of our professors, we think it would be a small price to pay for a great deal of sanity for all involved.