Registration: Round 2

Students not yet fully registered may participate in Round 2, which lasts three days and occurs in November (for spring classes) and April (for fall classes). The Registrar's Calendar details the exact dates and deadlines for each round of registration.


During Round 2, no classes or labs can be dropped or swapped. Round 1 registrations stand; there are no exceptions to this policy. Students may begin dropping and swapping and adding a fifth, 1.0 credit class during Add/Drop I.

Why is dropping disallowed? Round 2 is designed to allow students shut out of classes in Round 1 the chance to register for a full schedule by submitting requests for alternate classes. Students may only participate if they have room left in their schedule, e.g., they registered into fewer than 4.0 credits or 5.0 credits if they chose to request two additional 0.5 credits during Round 1. 

If a course filled to capacity during Round 1, it will be marked as "full" in the Classfinder and should not be requested in Round 2 as that will not result in a registration or a future bump in priority for being shut out. 

Like Round 1, students who have room in their schedules without dropping or swapping, may submit requests in Polaris for up to four, 1.0 credit classes and two additional 0.5 credit classes only. Students may choose to request fewer credits during Round 1 and Round 2, but all students must be enrolled full-time by the end of the first week of each semester.

During Round 2, students do not register for classes, they submit requests for alternate choice classes in Polaris for which they meet the eligibility requirements, regardless of class size, and there is no priority or penalty for when students participate during Round 2.

  • Course requests are processed with Bowdoin's registration algorithm and students receive seats based on the registration preference order established by the faculty, which can be found in the Classfinder along with other details, e.g., course description, by clicking on the 5-digit CRN (course registration number) to expand the information.
  • If there are more requests than available seats, 1 or more students will be shut out. They will have a bump up within their priority group during registration in a future semester for the same class.
  • All students are notified via email when the results of Round 2 are available and should check the "My Courses" section of Polaris to see which of their requests resulted in registrations and plan to participate in Add/Drop I if they were shut out of any classes. 

All students have an ADVISOR HOLD at the beginning of the course registration cycle. The advisor hold is in place to ensure that students are consulting with their faculty advisors about their curricular plans and potential class schedule. Advisors only need to lift the hold once, so advisor holds do not apply to most students in Round 2. However, any student who is initially participating in registration in Round 2 will need to secure the release of their advisor hold

Students may submit course requests before the advisor hold is lifted, but the advisor hold must be released or their course requests will not be processed. 

Degree Requirementsdetails about general requirements, like divisions and distributions, and major/minor requirements are available in Degree Progress and students are strongly encouraged to review their Degree Progress prior to participating in registration. To access Degree Progress, log into Polaris, and click "Degree Progress" in the "My Academic Profile" section.

Error Messages: if a course request does not process successfully after hitting submit, read the error message that appears at the top right of the screen carefully. Common error messages include a time conflict or a missing requirement. Reach out to the Office of the Registrar before the deadline if you are unable to resolve an error. The best way to reach us is by emailing 

Reserved Seating: in fall semesters only, some faculty choose to reserve seats in their courses for students who will be new to Bowdoin in the fall. Returning students may not register for one of those seats during Round 1, Round 2, or Add/Drop I.

Technical Difficulties: reach out to the IT Service Desk if you experience any issues with system speed or connectivity. They have a myriad of methods by which you can reach them

Textbook Information: the cost of course materials for each class is available in the Classfinder. Click on the 5-digit CRN (course registration number) to expand the details of the class, and click on "Order Books" - located underneath prerequisites. The corresponding ecampus page will launch in a new window and details the full list of course materials and options for obtaining them, e.g., rent or buy.