Columbia Conspiracies: Why all the classes you wanted were gone

It’s that time of the year again. Don’t you love the buzz of the registration rollercoaster? What’s better than trawling through Spectator’s own Courses at CU and looking professors up on CULPA? As a sophomore with a reasonable registration time of 12 p.m. last Wednesday, signing up for classes was supposed to be fun and easy. Or so I thought.

Instead, everything was full. The Science of Psychology class I wanted to take? Gone. Robert King’s Topics in American Cinema? Full. Even Life Writing in Tibetan Buddhist Literature? Kapich.

I wasn’t alone. An academic pandemic is currently sweeping the Heights of Morningside. This semester’s registration has been disturbingly more brutal than usual. But why now? Who’s behind the Spring 2016 registration blockade?

For this week’s installment of CC, I investigate why all the classes we wanted were gone.

1. The Upperclassmen Theory

Every year the upperclassmen get sneakier and sneakier. Last year, they brought Big Sean to Bacchanal. This year’s upperclassmen have gone even further. In order to trial whatever takes their fancy, they’ve hedged their bets, forgot their majors, and registered for any class that sounds remotely interesting. First-years and sophomores are left with nothing. We see you walking around, with your non-Herschel backpacks and summer internships. Disgusting.

2. The Nervous Professor Theory

For whatever reason, some professors don’t like full classrooms. Perhaps they’re shy and don’t have good public speaking skills. Or maybe they find young people disturbing and difficult to relate to. It seems that some professors are registering for their own classes in order to stop real students attending. As a result, their classrooms are empty...and their piles of grading non-existent.

3. The Hermione Granger Theory

Avid readers of my stuff know that I’m a huge Harry Potter nerd. Well those hours spent crying over Dobby come in handy. In Harry Potter and the Prison of Azkaban, resident nerd, Hermione Granger, takes more classes than she can physically fit into her schedule. She uses a time turner device to go back and forth in time to attend simultaneous classes. Someone at Columbia is low-key taking 50 credits this semester and getting half their degree out of the way. Talk about commitment…

So if you didn’t get the classes you wanted this semester, don’t fret. There’s a reason behind those waitlists and we’re going to find out why.

Until then, wherever happenings don’t quite add up, Columbia Conspiracies will be one step behind.



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