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Waitlists and Overrides

When a course reaches the limit of seats available due to (a) space in the classroom or lab or (b) because the instruction requires the size of the course be limited to a certain number, the course is closed, and you cannot register for it on MyMadison. For some classes, you may be able to indicate your interest in getting into a closed class through two possible methods:

1. Utilizing the Waitlist
2. Requesting an Override.  

Utilizing the Waitlist

Some courses have specific sections with a Waitlist option if the course enrollment is full.  Waitlist sections are designated with a yellow triangle symbol:

Waitlist Triangle

To see if a class has a waitlist, uncheck the “Show Open Classes Only” box when you do a search.  View the tutorial for adding a waitlist class.

The following departments are using the Waitlist to manage enrollment requests:

Requesting an Override

In special cases, the department or the instructor may be able to give you a seat even though the course is closed.  This action is called an override

In most cases, you must approach the instructor of the class to request an override. However, there are certain departments that have a centralized override request process and require that you submit an online override request form.

Online override forms include:

Overrides are not provided for General Education Cluster 1 classes, or Communication Studies classes (GCOM, SCOM).

If the override process is not centrally organized, you need to contact the individual instructor to request an override. Here are the steps you can take:

  • Email the instructor.  All faculty email addresses can be found in the Campus Directory. You may or may not receive a reply to your email as instructors are often overwhelmed with email requests for overrides at the start of the semester. 
  • Stop by the instructor’s office.
  • Attend class on the first day, and arrive early so you can ask to talk with the instructor either before or after class.  

Explain to the professor why you wish to be in their class and ask if he/she will give you an override.

Registering for the Course

If the instructor tells you that you may have an override, you are not registered for the class until you go onto MyMadison and register for it.  Often the instructor will refer you to the administrative assistant for the department who will help arrange for your override using one of the following methods:

  1. Give you a permission number to enter into the appropriate space when adding the class on MyMadison
  2. Your ID will be entered into the system so that you are able to add the class.


  • Sometimes overrides have an expiration date, and if you don’t use them by that date, you will lose the override.
  • View your schedule on MyMadison after registering to be sure that the course is on your schedule.