In Computer Science, CS advisors have made modifications to the University’s procedures during the Add/Drop period for CS courses only. If you are not able to enrol into a CS course, then the information below may answer your questions:


If you want a non-CS course (e.g., Math, electives, etc.), then please contact the department's advisor/staff of that course for an override. CS advisors are not able to override students into non-CS courses.

The course is full, what do I do?

During the Drop/Add period, we drop the enrolment caps by approximately 15% of the total enrolment number for the course to give advisors room to handle special cases. We will return the enrolment caps to their actual size during the second week of classes after we have had time to help students that fall under our special cases.

For Winter 2022, enrolment caps will return to their actual size on Monday, January 10, 2022 (exact time unknown but usually during business hours). 

After the enrolment caps are returned to their actual size, the remaining space may continue to have reserves on the course, which will be removed usually the following day.

I’m getting a reserve error, what do I do?

If you get a "reserve error" when adding a course on Quest, this means that a portion of the class’s enrolment is reserved for a particular group of students and you don't meet the reserve capacity requirements for that course. You can tell that a course has set aside a number of seats for a particular group of students on the Schedule of Classes, directly beneath each section that has a reserve capacity assigned.

Reserves will be removed by the Registrar's Office on Wednesday, January 12, 2022. The exact time is unknown, but the reserve restriction is usually removed during normal business hours. Once reserves are removed, then you can enroll into the course using Quest. Note that spaces in the course will be available on a first-come-first-served basis if the class section isn't already at its enrolment capacity.

I'm getting a department consent error, what do I do?

If you get a “department consent” error when adding a course on Quest, it’s likely that the course has a waitlist (please see below for more information). You will not be able to add that course unless given consent by a CS advisor. 

Please note that courses that have a waitlist will not be available on a first-come-first-serve basis unless department consent has been removed. Department consent will only be removed once we have exhausted the waitlist. 

I'm getting an instructor consent error

Starting Wednesday, January 12, 2022, instructor consent will be applied to our project based courses (e.g., CS 346, 445, 446, 449, 493, and 494). A student wishing to enroll into one of these courses would need to contact the instructor first and meet their conditions for enrollment (e.g., the student may need to find a group before they can enroll). If the student is able to meet these conditions and if the instructor consents, then the instructor will contact the CS advisors so that we may override the student into the course.

Can I get an override into a CS course? Am I a special case?

In general, we do not override prerequisites for our courses. We will not override you into any CS courses unless you meet our special case guidelines listed below:

1. Students who participated in course selection, but something went wrong because of:

  • enrolment capacity in a course (please review more information regarding waitlists)
  • a time conflict
  • an academic enrolment block was applied after course selection
  • dropping or failing a course after course selection

2. Students who could not select courses because of:

  • a recent transfer to CS
  • their status as international exchange students
  • hospitalization
  • an S&P or ELPE decision or related academic matters

 I'm in Math and I want CS 245 and/or CS 246

Math students are able to take CS 245 and CS 246, but most seats (~85%) are reserved for CS students. The remaining seats (~15%) for Math students fills up quickly, so not all Math students will get into these classes even though they chose CS 245 and CS 246 during course selection.

Math students won't be able to add the courses during the Drop/Add period because they don't meet the reserve requirement of being a CS student. Also, CS advisors will not be able to override Math students even if they course selected for CS245 and/or CS246, or need the course to raise their average to transfer into CS.

That said, the reserve for CS courses will be removed shortly after classes start. When reserves are removed, Math students can add CS 245 and/or CS 246 via Quest on a first come, first served basis. 

I'm in Engineering and I want to take a CS course, what do I do?

Engineering students are welcome to take CS major courses starting on Thursday, January 13, 2022, but should be aware of the following criteria and limitations for enrollment:

  • Criteria for enrollment into CS courses:
    • Must be in 3B or higher.
    • Required to have a CAV of 75% or higher.
    • Need to have completed a) a data structures course and b) one other course with significant CS technical content.
      1. Data structures courses include BME 122, ECE 250, MTE 140, and SYDE 223. Since these courses include quite a bit less content than the core CS data structures course, students should proceed with caution, particularly if their marks are not high.
      2. Courses with significant CS technical content include ECE 254, 351, 406, 409, 417, 429, 451, 452, 453, 457A, 457B, 458, 459, SYDE 322 and MTE 241.
  • Limits to enrolling into CS courses:
    • CS advisors will only sign pre-requisite overrides after CS majors have been added to courses, typically the second week of term. Advisors will not override enrolment caps.
    • Engineering students may only take one CS major course per term.
    • Engineering students should take Engineering courses where possible. This immediately eliminates CS 341, 348, 350, 450, 454, 456, 457, 458, 485, 486, 490, and 492 because Engineering offers similar content.

What is a waitlist and which courses have them?

For Winter 2022, some courses have waitlists and department consent has been placed on these courses. Waitlists are only created when the number of students who course selected/pre-enrolled into the course is greater than the number of spots in the course.

Winter 2022 waitlisted courses:

  • CS230 - Department consent removed Dec 6, 2021
  • CS431
  • CS451
  • CS452
  • CS492 - Department consent removed Dec 20, 2021 but was replaced on Jan 5. Please contact the instructor directly for enrollment approval.

Students who want to be enrolled in courses that have a waitlist, but did not participate during course selection, will need to wait until the waitlist is exhausted and department consent has been removed. A post will be made on the CS blog when/if department consent is removed on courses with a waitlist. If you receive a message from Quest about needing department consent, then this means that there is still a waitlist on that course. 

How do I get onto a waitlist for a course? 

A waitlist is created when the demand for this course was greater than the number of available seats. Department consent has been placed on this course, and no one will be able to add the course without the permission of CS advisors. Quest may show that there is space in the course but this number is not accurate because the process is manual.

I didn't course select for the waitlisted course. What do I do?

Waitlists are only used to manage students that have course selected or pre-enrolled in the previous term. If you didn’t participate in course selection, then you will need to wait for the list to become exhausted and department consent to be removed. Once department consent has been removed, then the course will be available on a first-come-first-serve basis. The removal of department consent on a course will be posted above and on our CS Blog.

I course selected/pre-enrolled for the waitlisted course. What do I do?

If you course selected or pre-enrolled for a course and didn’t get in, then you are already on the waitlist. You have been placed on a waitlist for this course, along with all other students who requested this course during course selection, but did not get in. No other students will be placed on this list. We will fill any spots that open up in the course from the waitlist. Our selection will be random, so we are not able to tell you your place in line. If a position opens up for you, then we will contact you.

At this time, there is no need for you to take any action. However, you must respond to us when we contact you once a space does become available; otherwise, we will assume that you are no longer interested in the course. If we do not hear from you when we contact you, then we will remove you from the waitlist and offer the space to another student. Please be sure to check your junk mail on occasion.

If you have decided that you no longer want this course or you no longer meet the prerequisites, then we would appreciate if you would let us know ( as it would help the other students on the waitlist.

If you have decided to take another CS course instead of the one in which you are on the waitlist for, then please contact us ( for assistance. Note that the course you choose must be one that is not waitlisted, as we will not add you to another course's waitlist. 

Please note that if you have requested another CS course, but was not successfully enrolled and you did not receive an email informing that you are on the waitlist for that course, then you should contact CS advisors for assistance.