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Enrolling in Courses

Open EnrollmentWaitlists Permission NumbersAuditing

Open Enrollment

The Open Enrollment period for each quarter spans when enrollment opens through to the Final Study List deadline. Please see the Registrar's Academic Calendar for academic and enrollment deadlines. The course catalog and schedule of classes is presented at the Stanford Bulletin's ExploreCourses web site. Information on degree requirements is available at the Stanford Bulletin's ExploreDegrees web site. The Stanford Bulletin and the Time Schedule are no longer printed.

Prior to enrollment each quarter, please keep in mind the following important considerations: 

  • Clear any holds blocking your registration; holds on registration may be viewed in Axess.

  • Pay your tuition and fees; payment in full is due on the date indicated on the University Bill. See the Student Financial Services site for more information on payments.

  • See your academic, departmental, or faculty advisers to discuss academic plans.

Enrolling in Courses

Go to Axess to enroll in courses. For assistance on using Axess to enroll in courses, see How to Enroll in Courses.

  • Students should be at full time status by the Preliminary Study List deadline. Those not enrolled by the Final Study List deadline, could have their registration and financial assistance canceled.

  • Not being at full time status during an academic quarter could have negative academic and financial consequences for you. For more information on unit thresholds by degree type, please visit our Certifications page.

  • In order to live in University housing, students must be enrolled in courses. 


If a class is full, you may be given the option of adding your name to a waitlist. When a place opens up in the class, Axess' enrollment engine will place the first eligible student on the waitlist into the class.

Waitlist eligibility (i.e., your eligibility to be added to the class) is based upon factors including time conflicts, holds, and maximum units:

  • If you have a time conflict (i.e., you are enrolled in another class that wholly or partially overlaps with the class for which you are on the waitlist), you will be bypassed and the next eligible student will be added.

    • You can avoid this issue by designating your existing class as a "drop if enrolled" class at the time when you enroll onto the waitlist. With the "drop if enrolled" class designation, you will be eligible to be enrolled off the waitlist into your desired class and simultaneously dropped from your conflicting class.

  • If enrolling in the class would take you above the maximum allowable units (i.e., 20 units for undergraduates), you will be bypassed and the next eligible student will be added.

  • If you have an enrollment hold, you will be bypassed and the next eligible student will be added. Contact the Student Services Center if you need information about a hold on your enrollment.

Permission Numbers

Instructors may choose to limit the enrollment in their courses via Permission Numbers. There are two methods by which an instructor or a designated administrator can give you permission to enroll in a class with restricted enrollment. This depends upon how the class was set up; only one method or the other is available if permission is required.

  • By number: Axess generates permission numbers which are given to you by a department administrator or instructor. You enter the permission number in Axess in order to be enrolled. Please see How to Use SimpleEnroll to see an example of prompting for a Permission Number during the enrollment process. 


  • By student: A department administrator enters the student ID to grant permission; the student may then enroll.


2021-22 Academic Year: Due to current health guidelines, auditing is only allowed for matriculated undergraduates, matriculated graduate/professional students, Stanford faculty, and Stanford staff, with the consent of the instructor.