Undergraduates

First Year Student Admissions

Application and Deadlines

Cal Poly only accepts applications for the fall term. Interested applicants must submit the Cal State Apply online application with the $70.00 application fee, electronically by December 15th. 

  • Late applications are not accepted.
  • All applicants will be notified via email of the admission decision by April 1.
  • Selected applicants must accept or decline our offer of admission by May 1.

Selection Criteria

First Year Selection Criteria

Cal Poly requires you to declare a major when submitting your application. Our selection process considers many factors for admission in an objective format in which applicants compete against other applicants within the same major. When we review your application, we consider:

Your Intended Program of Study

We evaluate and admit students by their major. Admission is competitive in all majors.

Coursework with a Grade of C or Better

We look at the college-prep coursework you have taken during high school, including the courses you have in progress or planned during 12th grade. Our selection process is based on your self-reported information. Please do not send us official transcripts unless we request them.

GPA

For the purposes of your application, we'll consider your 9th-11th grade weighted GPA. That number is calculated from college-prep coursework as designated on your application. Weight is granted for courses designated as “honors,” “college-level,” “advanced placement” or “international baccalaureate” for up to eight semesters.

Standardized Test Scores

Test scores for Fall 2021 admission decisions will NOT be considered. 

Only ACT or SAT 1 scores are used in the selection process. You may send as many ACT and SAT 1 scores taken before November 30 as you’d like and we will apply the best score for each area.

Extracurricular Activities & Work Experience

Cal Poly takes activities such as work experience, internships, volunteer programs and extracurricular activities into consideration. We are also interested in any leadership roles you may have held in these activities.

Other Variables

Cal Poly is an impacted campus and admission is competitive in all majors. While GPA and test scores (when applicable) are important, it is impossible to predict a candidate’s chances by looking at these statistics alone. Cal Poly considers other factors for admission deemed important to our campus. All candidates are objectively evaluated by the cognitive and non-cognitive variables under our faculty-mandated Multi-Criteria Admission (MCA) process. We encourage students to apply to the program they feel best fits their academic and professional goals.


All information is subject to change without prior notice.

Visit the Cal Poly First Year Selection Criteria Page for more information.

More Information

Visit the Cal Poly Admissions Page for more information.

Transfer Student Admissions

Application and Deadlines

Cal Poly only accepts applications for the fall term. Interested applicants must submit the Cal State Apply online application with the $70.00 application fee, electronically by December 15th. 

  • Late applications are not accepted.
  • All applicants will be notified via email of the admission decision by April 1.
  • Selected applicants must accept or decline our offer of admission by May 1.

Selection Criteria

Transfer Selection Criteria

Beyond the basic qualifications for the California State University, Cal Poly considers other factors for admission for transfer students. We require you to declare a major when submitting your application and our selection process evaluates you compared to other applicants within the same major. When we review your application, we consider:

Your Intended Program of Study

We evaluate and admit students by their major and admission is competitive in all majors. Each major has its own selection criteria and required coursework for transfer students to have completed in order to be considered competitive during the selection process.

Number of Units Completed

All transfer applicants must have a minimum of 60 transferable semester (90 quarter) units completed prior to transfer. For admission to the fall quarter, applicants must have the coursework completed no later than the end of the previous spring.

General Education or IGETC Courses

As a transfer applicant, you must have completed four required General Education courses, with a grade of C- or better. We call these courses the “Golden Four.” They include:

  • Critical Thinking (Engineering majors are excluded from this requirement)
  • Math Concepts/Quantitative Reasoning
  • Oral Communication
  • Written Communication

Beyond these requirements, applicants will receive consideration for any General Education courses completed. Transfer students are not expected to fully complete all GE-Breadth or IGETC (Intersegmental General Education Transfer Curriculum) requirements. If your current institution does not have a GE-Breadth or IGETC curriculum, you can reference Cal Poly’s General Education curriculum.

GPA

Although the CSU requires an overall college GPA of at least 2.00 for transfer, Cal Poly is highly impacted and admits typically have a higher GPA. Transfer students also must be in good standing at the last college or university attended.

Extracurricular Activities & Work Experience

Cal Poly takes your activities such as work experience, internships, volunteer programs and extracurricular activities into consideration. We are also interested in any leadership roles you may have held in these activities.

Other Variables

Cal Poly is an impacted campus and admission is competitive in all majors. While GPA is important, it is impossible to predict a candidate’s chances by looking at this alone. Cal Poly considers other factors for admission deemed important to our campus. All candidates are objectively evaluated by the cognitive and non-cognitive variables such as veteran status, area of residence and more under our faculty-mandated Multi-Criteria Admission (MCA) process. We encourage students to apply to the program they feel best fits their academic and professional goals.


All information is subject to change without prior notice.

Visit the Cal Poly Transfer Selection Criteria Page for more information.

Transfer Advising

Visit the Transfer Academic Advising page for information on:

  • Orientation and Fall Registration.
  • Financial aid.
  • Advice from other transfer students.
  • The next steps after committing to Cal Poly.

More Information

Visit the Cal Poly Admissions Page for more information.

Degrees

Our program offers two undergraduate degrees with a special emphasis on hands-on learning, fieldwork experiences and theoretical learning to prepare them to solve our world's challenges.

Civil EngineeringStudents standing in front of poster

As stated by the American Society of Civil Engineers, "Civil engineers design, build, and maintain the foundation for our modern society." This centuries-old profession provides services to the public and private sectors through safe and efficient solutions. Our civil engineering graduates are taught the necessary skills to plan, design, construct and maintain infrastructure and industrial facilities. The faculty of the Civil Engineering Program at Cal Poly prides itself on preparing its students and understanding the challenges associated with this industry.

Civil engineering is a very broad field, so our department offers six different areas of specialization: Geotechnical, Structural, Water Resources, Construction, Transportation, and General Civil Engineering. During their fourth year, students are allowed to specialize in one of these areas. However, prior to this selection students are required to take classes in each of these specialized areas to become proficient in all aspects of civil engineering. To learn more about these specializations, visit our Senior Thrust Areas page.

For more information about classes and flowcharts, visit our civil engineering curriculum page

 

Environmental EngineeringStudents and faculty looking at a water sample

The two most threatening issues in our world are water access and air pollution. Environmental engineers work to combat these problems and other natural occurrences. In 1968, Cal Poly offered one of the first undergraduate environmental engineering degree programs in the U.S. The degree program focuses on the interrelation of people, materials, and processes in a complex and changing environment. Our students learn about water sanitation, wastewater treatment, air quality control, renewable energy, pollution prevention, and other systems to improve public health. 

The job demand for environmental engineers is high due to the constant need for safe water, air, and land. Jobs in this field include working for the government, consulting companies, and engineering or architecture firms. Our environmental engineering students are required to take a two-quarter senior design capstone course where they demonstrate their understanding of essential engineering skills as well as their ability to solve practical, real-world design problems. These senior projects put students in the field before they graduate to ensure success in internships and jobs.

For more information about classes and flowcharts, visit our environmental engineering curriculum page

 

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