Registration Tips

See immediately below for some resources/general tips and check further down the page for an alphabetized list of general registration and academic information.

Registration: Resources and General Tips

  • check the Academic Calendar to make sure that you have the prerequisites for the courses that you wish to take
  • check the BMSc website (Access to Courses) for the constraint charts to see if you stand a good chance of getting into basic medical science courses for which you have the prerequisite
    • special permission is not granted by basic medical science departments to waive the priorities or restrictions
  • use the links on the Academics page of the Office of the Registrar:
    • Fall/Winter Academic Timetable to see which courses are offered and in which term
    • "Draft My Schedule" to create your conflict-free timetable
    • Register in Courses will provide information on how to add, drop and swap a class, as well as information about joining a wait list for a class
  • manage your expectations for course registration - you can't always get what you want!
    • have a Plan A and a Plan B for registration
  • Year 4 students: please do not register for more 4000-level basic medical science courses than you need (other people might not get what they want if you take too many 4000-level courses)
  • follow the steps about requesting special permission if you want to see about registering for a course without the prerequisite or despite a timetable conflict
    • special permission is not granted by basic medical science departments to waive the priorities or restrictions (constraints)

Quick tip for reading a prerequisite in the Academic Calendar:

For all basic medical science courses (e.g. Anatomy and Cell Biology, Physiology, etc.) the appearance of a semi-colon (;) in the Academic Calendar means AND, as in the following example:

  • Pharmacology 4540A/B - prerequisite(s): Physiology 3120; Physiology 3140A or Biology 3316A/B; Pharmacology 3620; or permission of the Department
For this example, the prerequisites for Pharmacology 4540A/B are Physiology 3120 AND either Physiology 3140A or Biology 3316A AND Pharmacology 3620.

Academic Counsellors

Affiliated University Colleges

  • A maximum of 1.0 course may be taken during the Fall/Winter sessions at an affiliated university college, unless you are registered in a module offered by the affiliate.
  • If a course is offered on main campus and at an affiliate, you have to take the course on main campus
  • If you think you have a good reason for requesting permission to take either more than 1.0 course at an affiliated university college or a course at an affiliate rather than on main campus, contact the Academic Counselling Team in NCB 280 via their Help Portal.


Look at the course description of the course you want to take in the online Academic Calendar. If the course you want to take lists a course you have already completed as an antirequisite, then you will lose credit for the course you have already completed. See the following example:

  • Chemistry 2213A: lists Chemistry 2273A as an antirequisite. If you completed Chemistry 2273A in the past and now want to take Chemistry 2213A, you can do so but you will lose credit for 2273A. Chemistry 2273A will still appear on your academic record (and transcript) but will have a notation beside it that indicates that the course does not count for credit toward your degree.

Sometimes courses are "two-way" antirequisites - course A lists course B as an antirequisite, and course B lists course A as an antirequisite. In a situation like this, you can hold credit for only one of these courses (the course that is taken last). Chemistry 2213A and 2273A are two-way antirequisites since both of them list the other as an antirequisite course.

Sometimes there is a "one-way" antirequisite for courses - course A lists course B as an antirequisite but course B does not list course A as an antirequisite. In a case like this, both courses can be taken and credit retained for both, but only if they are taken in a particular order. See the example below:

If you want to take Physiology 3120 but took Physiology 2130 in the past, then you will not lose credit for Physiology 2130 by taking Physiology 3120 (since 3120 does not list any antirequisite courses).
If you want to take Physiology 2130 but took Physiology 3120 in the past, then you will lose credit for Physiology 3120 if you take Physiology 2130 (since 2130 lists 3120 as one of the antirequisite courses).
You cannot take both Physiology 2130 and 3120 at the same time - you will lose credit for one of them.

Applying to Graduate

  • Year 4 students must apply to graduate between February 2 and April 30, in order to graduate at Spring Convocation in June. During first term, make sure that your program/plan is correct – if you are registered in a Minor, for example, and don’t complete the requirements of the Minor, you will not graduate at June Convocation. Changes to your program/plan must be made through the Academic Counselling Office for Science and Basic Medical Science students before you apply to graduate.
  • “With Distinction” is recognition granted to graduating students who achieve an overall average of 80% and no grade lower than 70% on the entire program (with no failed courses).
    • NOTE: students who transfer from another university to Western must have a mark of at least 70% in each course taken at the previous university to be considered for graduation "with distinction" from the BMSc and Neuroscience programs.

Common Course Policy

  • BMSc students who plan to graduate with two modules that contain “common” courses must satisfy the Common Course Policy for students registered in the Faculty of Science and the Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry (BMSc)

Constraints - Priorities and Restrictions

  • Most courses offered by the Basic Medical Science departments have constraints (priorities and restrictions) on them so that students in certain modules have better access to them

  • Information about course constraints can be found in two places:

    • courses offered by the basic medical science departments: Access to Courses

    • all other courses: see the Notes Section beside a course in Fall/Winter Timetable (this information also appears in Student Center).

Courses (or sections of a course) are full

  • If a course that is required for your program is full, you can contact the department offering the course to ask if more spaces will become available.  Please do not contact the department if you're concerned that the course will be full by the time your enrollment date arrives.  See Departmental Counsellors for contact information.
  • If a section of a course (lecture/lab/tutorial section) that you need to take is full, register for another section.  If all other sections conflict with your required courses, contact the department offering the course to if ask special permission might be granted for you to register, exceeding the section capacity.
  • Be prepared to re-adjust your timetable to fit in sections of courses that are not full!

Departmental Counsellors

Each department has counsellors to answer your questions about courses, such as:

  • Course prerequisite permission (taking a course without the prerequisite)
  • Problems with course registration (example: a course is full, timetable conflicts)
  • Course equivalency -- can a course taken at another university be used in place of a Western University course?

Final Grades and Grade Report (Adjudication Results)

First-year courses:

  • First-year courses (numbered 1000-1999) may be taken as options in Years 2-4 but your BMSc degree must contain a minimum of 13.0 senior courses (courses numbered 2000 and above). This means that, although you can (theoretically) take/hold credit for as many first-year courses as you wish, a maximum of of 7.0 first-year courses can be used as credits toward your BMSc degree.
    • example:  if you take 5.0 courses in each of Years 1, 2, 3 and 4 (20.0 credits in total), you can take up to 2.0 first-year courses as options in Years 2-4 and use them towards your BMSc degree (since you'll still have 13.0 senior courses)
    • example:  if you have IB or AP transfer credits for first-year English and History and you take 5.0 courses in each of Years 1, 2, 3 and 4 (22.0 credits in total - 2.0 transfer credits + 20.0 at Western)
  • See "Options" for more information.
  • See Graduation Requirements for Honors Bachelor Degrees

Graduation Regulations

  • See the online Academic Calendar for GRADUATION REQUIREMENTS, such as Breadth Requirements, Essay Requirements, etc. Transfer credits (IB, AP, university transfer credits, etc.) can be used to satisfy a breadth requirement. For example, 1.0 transfer credit in English can be used to satisfy the requirement of 1.0 Category B course. Transfer credits cannot be used to satisfy the essay requirements.

  • Use the worksheets for the various Honours Specialization modules and Double Major combinations in BMSc.

Online and Distance Studies courses

  • You may register in a maximum of 3.0 online/distance studies courses during the Fall/Winter session
  • Online/distance studies courses appear as part of your regular workload during the Fall/Winter session

Online Registration for Fall/Winter courses

  • Appointment times will be posted in Student Centre (look for Enrolment Dates) a day or two before registration begins for students going into each of Years 2, 3 and 4. Your appointment time represents the first time you can access the online registration system.


  • If you are looking only at the requirements for your degree, there is no regulation about the number of courses you have to take each year at a certain level.
  • When completing a BMSc degree (either honors or non-honors degree), you must have credit for 13.0 senior courses (senior = 2000 and above). Although you can take/hold credit for more than 7.0 first-year courses, a maximum of 7.0 first-year courses can be counted toward a BMSc degree.
  • There is no requirement that a certain number of courses in Years 3 and 4 be at the 3000- or 4000-level for a BMSc degree.  You must complete the required 3000- and 4000-level courses in your module but, beyond that, you don't have to take more courses at the 3000- or 4000-level to satisfy your BMSc degree requirements.
  • Some professional schools, however, require that a certain number of courses each year are “year-appropriate”. Schulich Medicine, for example, requires that at least 3.0 of your courses in Year 3 and 4 are at either the 3000- or 4000-level.

Physiology 2130 and 3120

  • Question:  can students take both Physiology 2130 and 3120?
  • Answer:  yes, students can take Physiology 2130 and 3120 (and hold credit for both) but only if Physiology 2130 is done first.
    • If you hold credit for one of the courses that is listed as an antirequisite for Physiology 2130, you can take Physiology 2130 but will lose credit for the course in the antirequisite list that you've already completed.  Look at the course description for Physiology 2130 in the Academic Calendar and you will see that Physiology 1020, 1021 and 3120 are listed as antirequisites.  If you have completed Physiology 3120 and want to take Physiology 2130, you can do so but you will lose credit for Physiology 3120
    • Look at the course description for Physiology 3120 in the Academic Calendar.  You'll see that no courses are listed as antirequisites which means that you cannot lose credit for any other course by taking Physiology 3120.
    • We refer to this kind of antirequisite as a one-way antirequisite:  credit can be held for both courses but only if they're completed in a certain order.
  • Question:  can Physiology 2130 be used in place of Physiology 3120 (since they are one-way antirequisites) for a basic medical science module that lists Physiology 3120 as a modular course?
  • Answer:  NO, Physiology 2130 cannot be used in place of Physiology 3120.

Registration:  Tutorials and General Help

Registration Issues (incuding error messages)

  • When you try to register for a course, you receive an error message indicating that you are unable to enrol in the course at this time - available seats are reserved and you do not meet the reserve capacity requirements.  Possible explanations:

If you cannot figure out the reason why you are unable to register for a basic medical science course, send us an email message with your name, student number and a screen shot of the error message.

Program/plan (degree and module)

  • The degree and module in which you are registered for the upcoming year is what we refer to as your “program/plan”. To view your program/plan, go to Student Centre and click on My Program -- your degree and module(s) will be listed.

Special Permission

Special Permission requests must be approved by the Academic Counselling Team in NCB 280. See Special Permission for more detailed information.

Western Scholars designation

  • Students registered with the Western Scholars designation must achieve an average of at least 80% in a full load of 5.0 courses each year with no mark less than 65% in any of these 5.0 courses
  • Year 4 students with the Western Scholars designation: to be eligible to graduate, you must complete at least 5.0 courses in the Fall/Winter session and achieve the marks requirements stated above
  • Visit the Academic Calendar for more detailed information about Western Scholars.

Year 4 project/thesis courses

  • Year 4 project/thesis courses (e.g. Physiology and Pharmacology 4980E, Microbiology and Immunology 4970E) are worth 1.5 credits and are essay-designated courses, meaning they satisfy 1.5 of the 2.0 essay credits required for graduation.
  • Special permission is NOT granted for students to take these courses unless they are registered in a module that requires the 4000-level project course.