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Department of Computer Science

High demand enrollment

To request enrollment for Comp 40 in Fall 2019, you must fill out this form before the deadlines described below.


  • April 3 at 11:59 PM: Rising juniors, rising seniors, graduate students, postbacs
  • April 10 at 11:59 PM: Rising first-years, rising sophomores


If you wish to apply for authorization to register for COMP 40 in SIS at your assigned registration time, here are the steps you must take.

If you have not met with your advisor by April 3, and are considering taking COMP 40 but have not decided, please fill out the form indicating you wish to take the course (if you change your mind, you can email to let us know you are no longer interested).

Unchanged from recent terms is that your status as a CS major or minor plays a role in determining your priority for admission to COMP. However: In most years, we have eventually admitted all rising sophomores, including those who are undeclared, and choosing a major is a very important decision. The department strongly discourages students from declaring a CS major just to improve their chances of admission to COMP 40.

Reasons for the new procedures:

The Department of Computer Science has been paying close attention to enrollments in core CS courses as demand grows. Our class sizes are limited both by the availability of faculty and TAs, and by the availability of classroom space. We also work hard to fairly ensure that students who have the greatest need to be admitted are given priority. In recent terms, administering all of this through SIS has been very time-consuming for the department and frustrating for students. For those reasons, we are making the changes described below for COMP 40 for Fall 2018.

New procedures and what students must do:

  • COMP 40 has been designated "high demand" for Fall 2019.
  • This means that the process for enrolling in the course will be different. Instead of directly registering for the course or a special waitlist section of the course in SIS, students will, several weeks before registration opens, fill out a web form to indicate their interest.
  • The form will remain open through the summer, but to be considered for on-time registration at your designated SIS registration date/time, you must complete the web form with all required information by April 3 at 11:59 PM for rising juniors and seniors, postbacs, and graduate students, and by April 10 at 11:59 PM for rising first-years and sophomores. Registration requests received after those times will be considered as space allows.

Authorizations to register:

No student will be allowed to register in SIS until their student ID number is specifically authorized by the department. The expected capacity of the class will be at least 120 students, but because of the need to serve an unpredictable number of postbacs and others who will not register until late summer, we must reserve a number of seats until that time. We also understand how valuable it is for students to learn their status early. Therefore, based int he information received in the on-time web form submissions:

  • We will authorize for registration in SIS as many students as possible in time for them to select COMP 40 when SIS registration opens for the fall term. Once authorized, students will be able to register in SIS. You will be informed as soon as you are authorized, and then you must register. Authorization does not automatically register a student.
  • We will do our best to communicate with other students through the spring and the summer, as we receive more information, about the likelihood that they will eventually be admitted.
  • Shortly before the term begins, once we have firm information about registration requests from graduate students and postbacs, we will send final decisions to the remaining students who still wish to take COMP 40.

In all cases, decisions on whom to admit are at the discretion of the Department of Computer Science. We will use students' status (e.g., year, major, etc.), as documented in the form responses, to inform decisions. Among students who would otherwise have similar priority (e.g., same year, same major, etc.), students will be selected at random from those whose form was received by the deadlines listed above. There is no advantage to being the first to submit, as long as you submit on time according to the deadline for your year.

While our goal is for every student to be able to take the courses they want, we recognize that we do not always achieve that goal, and we very much appreciate your understanding. If you are not able to take the course in Fall 2019, it will be offered again in Spring 2020.

If you have questions, please email us. It will reach the administrative staff who handle registrations as well as the instructor.

Request enrollment for COMP 40 in Fall 2019