Cal Poly CLA News

The latest online edition of CLA's Impact Magazine

CLA Transfer Students

CP Transfers


We're so glad you're here. The College of Liberal Arts is passionate about supporting our transfer students.

To help ease with the transition to Cal Poly, we’ve put together information about registering for your first fall quarter. This is a unique process and we are here to help you. 

Additionally, we encourage you to explore the general academic advising information for all Cal Poly transfer students and to connect with the Transfer Center for campus wide transfer resources, events, & support. 

Future Prospective Transfer Students

If you are a future Cal Poly transfer student, please visit Cal Poly Admissions for application criteria and deadlines.


Newly Admitted Fall 2024 Transfer Students

Congratulations on your acceptance to Cal Poly!

Please review all of this information in preparation for Transfer SLO Days and Fall Registration. We will go over all of this information in detail at Transfer SLO Days. There will be time for individual questions.

Step #1: Download your Major Specific Materials

Curriculum Sheet, Flowchart & Fall Recommended Courses

    New transfer students will be placed on the 2021-2022 catalog or the 2022-2026 catalog, based on eligibility and coursework completed. You can view your catalog after matriculation (usually mid/late July) by going to “My Portal,” selecting the “Academics” tab, then “PolyProfile.” Your catalog will be listed above your major information. 

    Download your major-specific Curriculum Sheet and Flowchart at:

    Your major has provided a list of courses they suggest for your fall registration. Seats in some classes have even been saved just for you! Please click on your major below to see recommended courses for Fall 2024 registration.

    These course recommendations will be discussed by an Advisor during Transfer SLO Days.

    Fall 2024 registration will be on August 12th 2024.


    Step #2: Understand Your Degree Requirements

    The information below will help you understand your degree requirements, using your major specific materials from step #1. It is important you know what you need to earn your degree!

    Curriculum Sheet

    The curriculum sheet displays all of your course requirements in a one page snapshot. Should always be used in conjunction with review of your Degree Progress Report (DPR).

    The Office of the Registrar - Evaluations Unit will be looking through all of your transcripts and evaluating what you will receive credit for at Cal Poly. Once they finish this transfer evaluation, you will receive an email. Shortly after you receive your email, you will also be emailed a copy of your curriculum sheet marked to reflect what you have completed and what you have remaining. This will be sent from CLA Advising Center.

    The Curriculum Sheet is broken down into four main sections that are described below:

    Picture of Curriculum Sheet

    Major Courses

    Major courses are the courses that make up your major curriculum. In some majors, this includes electives and/or concentrations.

    Support Courses

    Support courses are courses chosen by your department to provide foundational support for your major courses. 

    General Education (GE) Courses

    General Education courses are broken down into several areas. Transfer students with an Associate Degree or CSU GE certification or IGETC certification, will have lower division GEs completed. There may be exceptions. Talk to your Advisor during Transfer SLO Days if you do not have credit for a lower division GE.

    You may notice on your curriculum sheet that some of your GEs are completed with your major or support courses.

    Transfer students still need to complete Upper Division GE courses. 

    Free Electives

    If your major has Free Electives, you may have already fulfilled this requirement with transfer credit.

    Degree Progress Report

    Your Degree Progress Report (also known as your DPR) is the most important tool to understand as a Cal Poly student. Like the Curriculum Sheet, the Degree Progress Report displays degree requirements to graduate. The Degree Progress Report is used to confirm your degree so it is important to make sure the courses you have completed and will be taking are fulfilling the requirements in your DPR.

    You should check your DPR before you register each quarter to identify what you need. Then again after you register to to confirm that you registered for applicable courses and track your overall progress. 

    Note: your Degree Progress Report will not be accurate until you receive an email from the Office of the Registrar letting you know that your transfer evaluation is complete.

    How to access your Degree Progress Report

    1. Log in to
    2. Go to your Student Center under My Apps on the left hand side
    3. Open the Academic Progress drop-down menu and select Degree Progress Report (DPR)


    How to read your Degree Progress Report

    Clicking through the Degree Progress Report can be confusing. It can be helpful to look at the Degree Progress Report along with your Curriculum Sheet, as it is broken up into sections similar to your Curriculum Sheet.

    The first section of your Degree Progress Report will display your total units and degree requirements. The United States Cultural Pluralism Requirement and the Graduation Writing Requirement are also in this section. We will review both of those requirements below.

    Once your transfer evaluation is complete, you should see various requirements Satisfied or Not Satisfied. Once you register, you will see some requirements as Satisfied - IP (In Progress). 

    Your General Education (GE) requirements are listed. You may have satisfied many of these with transfer credits. Be sure to check any Not Satisfied sections. Check your curriculum sheet as a Not Satisfied GE may automatically be fulfilled with a major or support course.


    You may notice on your curriculum sheet that some of your GEs are completed with your major or support courses. If you have not completed the specific course, that GE in the DPR will not show as complete. The DPR is waiting for you to take the specific course planned in your major or support.

    You can see these Major Specified GEs noted in your DPR at the top of the GE section.

    After GE Courses, your major requirements are listed. You will click into each section to see the details.

    If your major has a concentration, your concentration requirements will be added to your DPR once you have officially declared that concentration.    

    It is so important that you READ all the notes for each section in the DPR. Not reading the notes may mean you miss important information and take a class that is not necessary. If you have any questions, let us know at We are here to help!


    Transfer Credit

    While reviewing your Curriculum Sheet or Degree Progress Report, you may ask how certain courses transferred to Cal Poly. You can see further details about your transfer credit in your Poly Profile under "Higher Ed Credits Detail."

    Transfer credit will continue to be evaluated and processed by Cal Poly until registration on Aug 12th. When your transfer evaluation is complete, you will receive an email from the Office of the Registrar - Evaluations Unit. At that time, you will be able to view your transfer credit in PolyProfile, and how those classes apply towards your degree in your Degree Progress Report.

    Steps on how to find your transfer credit

    1. Access PolyProfile through your Cal Poly Portal under your Academics Tab. 
    2. Click on the Higher Ed Credits Detail link located on the right side of the page.
    3. Under Additional Higher Education Credits Detail, you will find the transcripts we received from you. 
    4. On the right side, you will find the courses you took and on the left side, you will see how they transferred to Cal Poly.
    5. After reviewing your courses, you can access your Degree Progress Report to view your overall degree requirements.  You can then see what you have completed and what you still need to graduate.

    View of Higher Ed Credit


    Transfer credit is reviewed very closely. Advisors are also submitting petitions on your behalf if we have noticed that any applicable credit did not fully transfer. Please note that lower division courses taken at a community college cannot transfer to fulfill upper division courses (300-400 level) at Cal Poly.

    If you believe you should have received credit for a course, you can talk with a CLA Advisor at Transfer SLO Days, email or visit our zoom drop-in advising. If we are unable to confirm transfer credit, you may petition for credit. 

    Graduate Writing Requirement (GWR) & United States Cultural Pluralism Requirement (USCP)

    There are two requirements that are important for you to know about. Since you may be transferring in a majority of your General Education (GE) courses, you will want to review both requirements below so you are not adding extra work while completing your degree. 

    Graduation Writing Requirement (GWR)

    The Graduation Writing Requirement (GWR) is a CSU-mandated program designed to ensure that student can write proficiently before they enter the professional workforce. All Cal Poly students who are seeking a degree must fulfill the GWR before a diploma can be awarded.

    • Undergraduate students with 90 or more completed units should attempt to fulfill the GWR before their senior year.

    There are two ways to fulfill the GWR:

      1. Pass a GWR-certified upper-division course with a C or better on a major writing assignment and a final course grade of C or better with at least 35% of the final grade based on the cumulative grade of all writing projects; OR,
      2. Earn a passing score on a GWR Portfolio (*Note: the GWR Portfolio has replaced the Writing Proficiency Exam in response to the March 2020 CSU suspension of in-person GWR testing).

    GWR Information for Transfer Students


    You will need to fulfill the GWR at Cal Poly even if you were GE-certified at your community college because the GWR is an upper-division University degree requirement and students must complete the requirement at the CSU campus at which they are matriculated.


    You may receive GWR credit if you fulfilled the requirement while enrolled at another CSU campus. Ask a representative from the GWR office at your former CSU campus to send to the Writing and Learning Initiatives office ( an official letter verifying GWR completion.


    You will need to fulfill the GWR at Cal Poly because students must earn GWR credit from the CSU campus at which they matriculate.

    For more information about the GWR, please visit the GWR website

    United States Cultural Pluralism (USCP) Requirement

    Students are required to complete one USCP course. This course may also fulfill a requirement for major, support, general education, or free elective category. You may have transfer credit for the USCP requirement. You can check your DPR after you are notified that your transfer evaluation is complete.

    What are USCP courses? 

    USCP courses must fulfill all of the criteria according to AS-836-17 and they must also address the Diversity Learning Objectives (DLOs). You can explore what courses count for the USCP requirement on the Catalog website

    How this will look in your DPR:



    Step #3: Check off Completed Coursework on Your Flowchart

    Now that you have reviewed your degree requirements, you can cross off any courses on the Flowchart that are marked as complete. 

    Understanding your Flowchart

    Flowcharts display one example of a path towards graduation in four years. All transfer students enter Cal Poly at different places in their curriculum. The four year flowchart can help transfer students clarify what is typically completed in the first two years and prioritize any of those unmet courses in their first year at Cal Poly. Otherwise, there is often flexibility for when you take classes. Junior transfers who check their Degree Progress Report regularly and check in with advisors can graduate in two years.

    In Step # 1, you were asked to download your flowchart.

    POLS Flowchart


    How to read your Flowchart

    Your flowchart displays your degree requirements in different colors. 

    • Orange Courses = Support Courses
    • Green Courses = General Education Courses
    • Yellow Courses = Major Courses
    • Pink Courses = Concentration Courses, if you major has a concentration option

    A course that is stretched across 2 or more quarters just means that you can take that course during any one of those quarters. It does not mean you must take this course multiple times.

    Pre-requisites for a course are noted in green text and are required in order to take that course.

    Check off Your Completed Coursework

    Now it's your turn!

    Take a moment to check off coursework you have already completed.

    Once your transfer evaluation is complete (and you got the email staying it is complete), you can use your Degree Progress Report (DPR) to identify courses you have completed.

    Curriculum Sheet to Flowchart

    Remember that CLA Advising will email you a copy of your curriculum sheet reflecting what you have completed and what you have remaining shortly after you are notified that your transfer evaluation is completed (by the Office of the Registrar). This will be anytime between July 15th and mid Aug. Be sure to send all AP Exam scores and transcripts to Cal Poly.

    Step #4: Select Courses to Take in Fall

    Using your checked off flowchart, identify courses for which you meet prerequisites and circle them on your flowchart.

    Refer to the recommended courses (see step #1) for fall registration options.

    Understanding Your Recommended Course List

    Your recommended course list is just that - courses that we suggest transfers take during their first quarter at Cal Poly. There may be specific notes about introductory courses and sections that may be relevant to consider for registration. Please make sure you read this document in its entirety. This document has essential information for you to be able to successfully register for the correct courses in fall quarter. 

    Screenshot of High Priority Courses

    Step #5: Create and Save Schedules in Schedule Builder

    Schedule Builder lives within the Student Center and is one of the tools you will use to prepare for registration. This tool allows you to view available courses and seats for an upcoming term, organize a schedule of courses in a calendar view, save favorite schedules, and enroll.

    Understanding Schedule Builder

    Check out this video to learn how to use Schedule Builder as a student.We will also review Schedule Builder during Transfer SLO Days.

    We encourage you to practice using Schedule Builder and explore the schedule builder FAQs.

    • Practice searching for upper level GE courses, such as Upper Division C.
    • Practice using the filters by searching for class with am in-person mode of instruction.
      • Below is a table that further describes the different class modalities:
    Synchronous Synchronous courses are fully online with established meeting days/times.
    Asynchronous Asynchronous courses are fully online with NO established meeting days/times. Course requirements are completed in a self-guided manner.
    Sync/Async Hybrid Synchronous/asynchronous hybrid courses are fully online, but the meeting pattern is a combination of established days/times (for the synchronous online component) and student self-guided work (for the asynchronous online component). 
    In Person In person courses are offered at on-campus or off-campus physical locations with established meeting days/times.
    In Person/Sync Hybrid In person/synchronous hybrid courses include in-person and online course content. These courses have established meeting days/times.
    In Person/Async Hybrid In person/asynchronous hybrid courses include in-person and online course content. The meeting pattern is a combination of established days/times (for the in-person component) and student self-guided work (for the asynchronous online component).

    Three schedule builder tips we have learned:

    1. Filters don't actually filter until you loot at a specific course. 
    2. Class Status filter: If you get an error when you try to build a schedule, it probably means you are filtering for "open" classes and that class is currently full. You can just remove that class and build a schedule without it. If you still want to look at the class and maybe get on the waitlist, then you need to uncheck "open" under filters.
    3. If you filter for both Area C GEs and Graduation Writing Requirement (GWR) classes, for example, it gives you BOTH C GEs and GWR course, NOT classes that fulfill both. Be careful. Read course descriptions to confirm GE credit or GWR credit.

    Saving Schedules in Schedule Builder

    Step 1: Select the term and use the Expanded Filters to search for and add courses

    Step 1

    Step 2: View more information by Selecting Sections and reviewing the Class Notes for details on Reserved Seats for new transfer students

    Step 2

    Step 3: Once you have Added Courses, select Build Schedule

    Step 3

    Step 4: View Different Schedules

    Step 4

    Step 5: Click the heart icon to save your favorite schedules with OPEN seats, which you can access later or add to your Enrollment Shopping Cart. Create back-up schedules with different courses.

    Step 5

    Again, we will review Schedule Builder during Transfer SLO Days, but be sure to check out this video on how to use Schedule Builder and review the steps and FAQs.

    Fall 2024 Registration

    Registration for new CLA Transfers will be on Monday, August 12th at 1pm. A few days prior, your registration time will be viewable in your student center on the right hand side. 

    We want to make sure you you feel prepared to register. Below is what you can expect:

    1. August 7th or August 8th - Transfer SLO Days: We hope you will be able to attend Transfer SLO Days. This important session will be led by an Advisor and representative from your major department. This is where we will be able to explain more major-specific information, answer individual student questions, and guide you through the registration process. There will be time during Transfer SLO Days for individual questions.
    2. August 9th & 12th - Post-Transfer SLO Days Support: We are available to support you with individual questions after Transfer SLO Days. 
      • Zoom Drop-Ins will be available on Friday, August 9th & Monday, August 12th 9am-4pm
      • Have a quick questions and prefer to email? Email us at 
      • Appointments will be available after August 12th.
    3. August 12th 1pm - Registration

    Students can enroll in courses using the options below: 

    • Schedule Builder: allows you to search for classes, see all sections and open seat capacity, arrange a variety of classes into possible schedules, and add/enroll in classes.
    • Student Center: allows you to search for classes, add/enroll in classes, swap classes (exchange one class for another), edit classes (change a lab or grading style), drop classes, and view your waitlist position. 

    Registration Waitlists

    The waitlist will run in the afternoon on Aug 13th and continue to run in the middle of the night thereafter.

    So you ended up on a Waitlist...that's okay! 

    First, it is important to mention again that registration for new transfer students is unusual. The process is different because you are registering after continuing students. Although departments do their best to reserve seats for transfer students, sometimes you end up on a waitlist. The two reasons you may have ended up on a waitlist are:

    1. There are no more open seats available in the course. 
    2. There are seats available, but another transfer student tried to enroll in the course who is already enrolled in the maximum 18 units or did not meet the course pre-requisites. Now the waitlist system has been "turned on" and every student after them has been placed on the waitlist. When the waitlist runs on the afternoon of August 13th and then in the middle of the night thereafter, you may be placed into the class based on number of seats available and how many transfer students are on the waitlist. If you are not enrolled by 4pm Aug 14th, select another course and continue to register.
    If you are still on the waitlist on Tuesday, it is time to look at registration again. Utilize the waitlist, but do not depend on it:
    • Remember those backup courses: We encouraged you to identify all courses you meet the pre-requisites for and write them down as back-up courses. Now use those options to continue to register or waitlist in any classes that you need. Remember you can waitlist for up to 16 units!
    • Check out other sections: You may be waitlisted in a section of a course, however a different section has available seats. Take a look at other sections and register for or waitlist those as well.  
    • Review your suggested course list.

    The goal is to have your schedule finalized by Aug 19th. If you are still on a waitlist on Aug 20th, you will no longer be prioritized from the waitlist. If you are number 29 on the waitlist, then there are 28 students ahead of you to get into the class. You should absolutely be looking at alternatives. Use zoom drop-in advising if you are having difficulty.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    We wanted to highlight some frequently asked questions that may come up during this time. Please do not hesitate to connect with us at if you have additional questions!


    1. Can I meet with an advisor before registration? 

    All of the information you will need for registration will be reviewed during Transfer SLO Days and you will have time to ask questions. We will also have zoom drop-in advising the Friday before registration and the day of registration.

    If you make an appointment before Transfer SLO Days, please only schedule after you have received the email that your transfer evaluation is complete. If you have quick general questions, you can email

    2. What should I do if I am waitlisted for my classes?

    The two reasons you may have ended up on a waitlist are:

    1. There are no more open seats available in the course. Please select another course.
    2. Another transfer student tried to enroll in the course, but since they have enrolled past 18 units or did not meet the course pre-requisites, the waitlist system has been "turned on" and every student after them has been placed on the waitlist. The waitlist will run late afternoon on Aug 12th and then continue in the middle of each night after that. If you are not enrolled in a waitlisted class by 4pm Aug 12th, select another course and continue to register.


    • CHECK OUT OTHER SECTIONS: You may be waitlisted in a section of a course, however a different section may have available seats. Take a look at other sections and register for or waitlist those as well.
    • BACK UP COURSES: We encouraged you to identify all courses you meet the pre-requisites for, using your curriculum sheet, DPR, flowchart, recommended courses, and write them down as back-up courses. Use those options to continue to register or waitlist in any classes in your major, support or unmet general education. You can waitlist for up to 16 units!
    • ZOOM DROP-IN ADVISING: Use our Zoom Drop-in Advising for continue registration assistance. 

    3. How do I get a permission number?

    Permission number instructions will differ depending on your major. For fall registration, you should not need permission numbers unless otherwise noted on your recommended course list.

    In the future, any necessary permission numbers are generally provided by the instructor or the department and will be noted in Schedule Builder. These are typically internship, senior project and some classes.

    4. If I have transfer credit that did not count for a Cal Poly course can I petition for credit?

    Refer to "Transfer Credit" in Step #2

    5. How many units should I enroll in for my first quarter at Cal Poly?

    Since Cal Poly is on the quarter system, our courses move quicker than the typical semester system and could be more challenging during your first quarter here. We recommend staying between 12-16 units.

    If you have any questions please reach out to our office by emailing

    To learn more about academic and campus policies check out the Transfer Center's resource page. 


    Quick review of common advising and registration terms


    Tool  Overview of the tool How to access this tool 
    Catalog Information on polices, major and minor requirements, graduation requirements, course descriptions with prerequisites and so much more! Check your DPR or PolyProfile to confirm your catalog. Own website:
    Curriculum Sheet One page snapshot of your degree course requirements. Helpful tool to track your own progress towards graduation. This should always be used along with your Degree Progress Report. 2 ways: or on the Academics Tab in your portal 
    Degree Progress Report (DPR) Degree tracking tool located in your Student Center. Tells you which degree requirements you have met or unmet, and which are in progress. Your DPR should be checked every quarter, before and after you register. This should always be used along with your Curriculum Sheet. Drop-down menu in your Student Center
    Degree Planner Required course planning tool which provides you with a personalized, pre-populated path to graduation. Your planner contains a sequence of courses that you need to regularly adjust to accurately reflect your future plans. Note: what you see in degree planner is NOT what you are registered for. You will register yourself in classes that may or may not be the same as what is in Degree Planner. In your Student Center 
    Flowchart Suggested flow for when to take classes in your degree based on prerequisites and when classes are typically offered. This is simply one suggested flow and can be very flexible depending on your major. Most flowcharts are currently displaying a four year flow. As a new transfer student, this is can be helpful to understand what is typically completed during the first two years in your major and what you may need to "catch up" on in your first few quarters at Cal Poly. 2 ways: or on the Academics Tab in your portal 
    PolyProfile Your unofficial transcripts. PolyProfile also displays any AP and/or IB test and transfer credit, has GPA calculators and will have an academic progress gauge. (beginning week 5 of fall quarter)!  Academics Tab of your Cal Poly Portal
    Reserved Seats Sometimes seats in a class are reserved for a population of students such as majors or new students. This is communicated in Schedule Builder. Be sure to read the notes and check the "reserved" and "unreserved" seat numbers. Schedule Builder
    Student Center Where you can find your Degree Progress Report, Schedule Builder, Degree Planner, grades, and SO much more!  Under "My Apps" in your Cal Poly Portal.
    Schedule Builder Allows you to search for classes being offered for a quarter, beginning two weeks before the start of registration for that quarter. You can check availability and build schedules for registration. You will register and waitlist for classes directly in Schedule Builder. In your Student Center 
    Transfer Evaluation How your completed credits transfer to Cal Poly and your major! The Office of the Registrar will evaluate previous college work and test credit in relation to Cal Poly degree requirements.  Every effort is made to provide a complete Degree Progress Report (DPR), with all transfer credit reflected, prior to the date of new transfer student registration in mid-August.  New transfer students will receive an email when their transfer evaluation has been completed, mid July-mid Aug
    Waitlist When you meet the prerequisites but the class is full, you may be able to add yourself to the waitlist. Waitlists run in the middle of the night. Utilize waitlist but do not depend on waitlists. Look for alternatives.  Waitlist via Schedule Builder (as if you are registering for the class). Check your waitlist number in "My Class Schedule" in Student Center

    First Quarter at Cal Poly

    Here are some important things to do during your first quarter at Cal Poly.

    Dates and Deadlines

    It can be hard to keep track of all the dates! There are calendars for future enrollment and deadlines that are good to be aware of.

    Cal Poly Policies

    It is important to know that academic policies you were familiar with at your previous campus will likely be different at Cal Poly. Here are some key policies:

    Registration (Plan for Winter)

    From now on, you will register as a continuing student. The overall process remains the same, but the details will be slightly different from when you registered for fall quarter.

    Each quarter you will be given a date/time for registration, which will be listed on the right side of the Student Center, two weeks prior to the start of registration. This date and time is based on your actual academic progress level (how many degree applicable units you have completed). Your level can be found on your academic progress gauge in PolyProfile (link found on your Academics Tab in Cal Poly Portal). It will be updated during week 4 of each quarter.

    We recommend that all new transfer students meet with CLA Advising to review their transfer credit, academic progress level and plan for graduation. In many cases, students will also be advised to meet with their Faculty Advisor or Department Chair.

    After your first Fall registration, seats are no longer held for new transfer students. But there may be seats held for majors in major courses!

    Getting Connected 

    Faculty and Staff

    People to Introduce yourself to

    1. Get to know CLA Advising as a resource to help you transition to Cal Poly and set yourself up to graduate on time!
    2. We highly recommend connecting with your faculty advisor right away.
    3. Your major department's administrative staff is a great resource.
    4. Schedule an appointment with your CLA career counselor, Laura.
    5. Chat with our college librarian, Brett.

    Transfer Center Events

    The Transfer Center is a great resource and physical space to connect with current transfer students, find community, study, meet with academic coaches and more.

    • Stop by their space – Bldg 52 Rm E 30 – for coffee, a place to study or heat up your lunch, to connect with a transfer student assistant, and more.
    • Attend a Transfer Center Program or Event – bowling, study breaks, dialogues, and more!
    • During October we celebrate National Transfer Student Week!
    • Email for any questions you may have or for support in connecting to resources across campus. 

    Second Quarter through Graduation

    Here are some ways to get involved once you start feeling settled at Cal Poly.

    Clubs & Programs

    Research Opportunities:

    Graduate School and Career Planning

    • Your best resource for graduate school planning will be your Faculty Advisors. They have been through it, they love to talk about it, and they have great information!
    • If you are a pre-health student, please visit the College of Science and Math Advising Center to discuss your health career plans and journey to becoming a competitive applicant.
    • For additional career support and graduate school planning, don't forget about your Career Counselor! They even have great online resources!

    Return to CLA Advising

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