Course Search & Enroll - Course and Section Panels


Learn how to use the course and sections panels in the Course Search & Enroll app.


Choose your courses for a term, and select and view the details of your preferred course sections.

Table of Contents

Course Panel

Select any course to show its information. The Course panel displays standard details about each course, including its official description, number of credits, and if it meets any General Education Requirements.

Some courses have much fuller descriptions, including reading lists and links to course websites under "instructor-provided content."

Many courses list "requisites," or requirements that must be met before you can enroll in that course. The requisites field may also list other rules about the course, perhaps related to the number of credits earned or which sections have an Honors option.

Courses will also have "Subject Notes" containing general information posted for all the courses in that subject.

At the bottom of the Course panel is a link to the website for the department that presents courses in this subject area.

There may also be links to more information about this subject area in the Guide, which is the master record of all UW–Madison's courses, degrees, and majors.

  • Add to plan: Add a course to a degree plan. You may choose to add it to any degree plan you created.
  • Save for later: Add a course to your list of courses that you might want to take in a later semester.
  • Add to cart: Add a course to your cart. Courses need to be in your cart before you can enroll. If you plan to enroll in the course, you will eventually need to select specific class meetings, known as sections (lectures, seminars, discussions, labs, etc.).
  • See sections: For more information about sections, see the Section Panel below.

Definitions of fields that could appear in course panel:

  • Requisites: The previous background, class standing or course work needed to assimilate the material in the course, or any requirements that must be met before you can enroll in that course.
  • Credits: Identifies the official course credit/credit range as approved by university curriculum committee. Students are not allowed to enroll for more or fewer credits than are indicated.
  • Level: Identifies whether the level of a course will be Elementary, Intermediate, or Advanced.
  • Breadth: Identifies whether a course counts toward the Breadth requirement for L&S BA/BS degree and specifies which part of the requirement it meets.
    • Breadth disciplines are: Biological Science, Humanities, Literature, Natural Science, Physical Science, or Social Science.
    • Note: A course could display two Breadth values. Students will get credit for only one of the displayed values. Please check your degree audit report and/or speak to your advisor to find out how either of these values (but not both) will be applied towards your breadth/degree requirements.
  • L&S Credit Type: Counts as LAS credit (L&S): Identifies whether a course counts towards the Liberal Arts and Science credit requirement for L&S students, as specified by the College of Letters and Science.
  • General Education: Identifies whether a course counts toward either the Communication requirement or the Quantitative Reasoning requirement for general education.
    • The Gen-Ed requirements are: Communication Part A, Communication Part B, Quantitative Reasoning Part A, Quantitative Reasoning Part B and Ethnic Studies. For more information go to
  • Last Taught: Identifies the term a course was last taught.
  • Cross Listed: Identifies the list of subjects that are offering this course. A cross listed course is the same course offered under more than one subject.

Course panel

Sections Panel

Select the See Sections button in the Course panel to view the term-specific details for that course.

Sections are all the kinds of class meetings that make up a course. These include:

  • Lecture (LEC): The most common class type. Can range in size from small to a few hundred students
  • Discussion (DIS): A smaller class held in addition to a lecture
  • Lab (LAB): A longer hands-on class, common in performing arts and science courses
  • Seminar (SEM): A smaller class with more intensive discussion than a lecture

When a course is made up of more than one kind of meeting (like a lecture, plus a discussion, plus a lab), these sections are arranged in specific combinations for enrollment. Certain discussions will be associated with certain lectures. A lab may be matched with one particular discussion. You enroll in these preset combinations.

Section filters

Details for all the course sections are shown in the Sections Panel. You can control which sections to view with the section filters. Adjust these filters by selecting the Section filters drop-down box:

  • Seats
  • Honors (shows all three Honors designations)
  • Reserved section (shows all groups of reserved sections)
  • Mode of instruction

If you don't see all the sections that you expect, make sure that the filters are set to what you want, and that you are searching in the correct term (Fall, Spring, Summer).

Section filters

Section details

Open more information about each section by clicking anywhere on the section's row.

  • Class availability: A real-time view of the class status. Note that the status must be "Open" to enroll or "Wait list" to enroll in the wait list, even if the availability shows available seats.
  • Requisites: Many sections have listed requisites, or requirements that must be met before you can enroll in that specific section. Note that different sections of the same course might have different requisites.
  • Class notes: Some courses will display additional information under "Class notes," such as whether the course meets with another course.
  • Class numbers: Each specific class has a unique five-digit number. When a lecture, lab, and discussion make up the whole course, each of those three sections will have its own five-digit class number. These class numbers can be used to search for a specific section, using the "Add by Class Number" feature in the Search filters.
  • Modes of instructions: View the mode of instruction for each section component.
  • Section Information: Such as optional honors.
  • Exam: View the exam details for that class.
  • Textbooks & other materials: When instructors have submitted a list of textbooks for their course, that list will be viewable through a link in the section details.
  • Instructor provided content: Week-by-week summaries of the course, announcements of special events or projects, and richer descriptions of the course itself might be found in the "instructor-provided content" link.
  • Section dates & deadlines: View the add, drop, and tuition adjustment dates for the section.

Section details

Course Options

  • Honors: For honors optional sections, choose whether to take the course with or without honors.
  • Wait list: Some courses are set up to have a wait list when the section is fully enrolled. Select if you would like to automatically be added to that section's wait list if the course is full at the moment that you try to enroll in it.
  • Select credits (variable credit): Some courses are offered at different credit amounts, depending on activity like participating in an optional discussion section, completing Honors work, having graduate-student status, etc. Your advisor, or a representative of the department offering the course, can help you determine your appropriate credit level. You must select the number of credits for variable credits courses to add the section to the cart.
  • Do you have a permission number?: Some courses require special permission before you can enroll. Most often, if you have been given permission to enroll by the department, a settings change will be made by the department and then you complete enrollment as usual. In some cases, the department will give you a permission number. Enter this number in the section details and then complete enrollment as usual.

Honors and Wait list options

Variable credits and permission number

Keywordsadd, change, course (courses, class), course search and enroll, dars (DARS), degree (degrees, degree planner), drop, gpa (GPA), hold, honors, indicators, name, permission, plan (plans, planner), record (records), requisite (prerequisite), schedule (scheduler), sis (SIS), swap, textbook (textbooks), transcript, transfer, wait (waitlist, wait list), withdraw (withdrawal)   Doc ID74443
OwnerDanielle C.GroupOffice of the Registrar
Created2017-07-03 11:02:47Updated2024-02-08 12:24:45
SitesDoIT Help Desk, Office of the Registrar
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