Your First Year at Cal Poly
Newly Admitted Transfer Students
Refer to Newly admitted transfer page for more information.
Newly Admitted Freshmen
My Class Schedule
To facilitate your transition to Cal Poly, we will enroll you into a full schedule of classes for your first fall quarter and a partial schedule for the following winter and spring quarters. We call this process “block scheduling”. This only occurs during your freshman year. For a detailed description, visit Block Schedules.
When will I get my fall class schedule?
In early August, you will receive your fall schedule via your Cal Poly email. This will be a full-time schedule with a variety of classes. For specific dates, visit the Advising Block Scheduling Support page.
Where do I find my class schedule?
You will be able to access your schedule through your Cal Poly Portal under “Student Center” on the left-hand side.
How does Cal Poly choose my classes?
When we choose your classes for the fall term, we consider your academic history (e.g., AP exam credit, transfer work) and your preferences from the Cal Poly Admission survey, which was sent to you after your admission.
Some of the classes you will see in your fall schedule are “major” classes (classes that are required for your major). Some are “support” classes (classes that are meant to support the material that you learn for your major; for instance, mathematics classes are considered “support” classes for engineering majors). Finally, some are “general education” (GE) classes (see General Education).
If you have any previous college credit and we receive those transcripts by July 15, they will be taken into consideration for block schedules. Any work that is received after July 15 may take up to one to two quarters to evaluate after the official transcript has been received. Official transcripts that include college credit must be sent to Cal Poly directly from the institution that awarded the credit; we cannot award credit for college courses listed on a high school transcript.
For more information on the classes chosen for you, visit the Mustang Success Center Block Scheduling support page.
How do I make changes to my class schedule?
Students can add/drop/swap classes to/from their schedule during the Open Enrollment period, which occurs sometime in mid-August. Please avoid making changes to your fall block schedule without consulting an advisor. We make very intentional efforts in placing you into these classes. If you really do believe that you have to make changes to your schedule, please talk to your academic advisor or contact the Mustang Success Center first.
For more information on fall block scheduling, Mustang Success Center Block Scheduling support page.
Will I be blocked into classes for Winter and Spring quarters?
We will also enroll you in some classes during your winter and spring quarters of your freshman year. You will see which courses you are enrolled in a few days before the enrollment appointments begin for these quarters (see Calendars and Deadlines for exact dates). Here is how winter and spring block scheduling differs from fall block scheduling:
- What's the difference between fall and winter/spring block schedules?
Unlike fall block schedules, we will only place you into critical major and/or support classes for winter and spring quarters. In other words, your winter and spring block schedules:
- Most likely will not be full-time schedules;
- Will not include any general education (GE) classes (with the exception of GE Area A1)
- Do I have to do anything when I receive my winter/spring block schedule?
Ideally, each student should enroll in a full-time schedule (at least 12 units) to make adequate degree progress. So, if you receive a less than full-time block schedule, you are expected to supplement your schedule with additional classes according to your degree flowchart. You may add classes or make changes to your block schedule during your enrollment appointment. However, you should keep in mind that if you drop a class that we have placed you in, you may not be able to add it back later.
- Please refer to your degree flowchart to figure out which additional classes to add to your schedule for winter/spring quarters. Note: If you have credit for or have taken all of the recommended classes in your first year before the year ends, you are encouraged to choose from classes recommended for your second year. Before you choose your classes for your winter and spring terms, as well as any other future terms from here on, you are also highly encouraged to view your degree progress report to verify which degree requirements you have completed and which ones are still remaining.
- What if I'm planning to change my major?
Just like your fall block schedule, your winter and spring schedules will reflect classes that pertain to your declared major. If you are planning to change your major or have started the change of major process, you must meet with an advisor either in your college advising center or in the Mustang Success Center before you attempt to make changes to your block schedule.
- I do not see a block schedule for winter or spring in my Student Center.
If you do not see a block schedule for winter and/or spring quarters in your Student Center, this most likely means that your major has not prescribed any specific classes for you for winter/spring quarters. In this case, please use your degree flowchart and your degree progress report to pick the classes you wish to enroll. You can also reach out to an advisor to help you with this process.
- You will NOT receive a winter and/or spring block schedule if you have a hold on your account. You are responsible to clear the hold(s) on your account by the deadline listed in the Student Planning Calendar. Typically, students might have holds on their accounts for the following reasons:
For more information on winter and spring block scheduling, visit your college advising center:
College of Engineering
What is PolyPlanner?
PolyPlanner is Cal Poly’s required course planning software. You must enter your first choice in courses for the upcoming terms before each quarter’s deadline.
Why is it required?
Departments access this data for planning purposes. They try to accommodate your academic plans so you are able to enroll in the classes you need to graduate on time.
Where can I find my PolyPlan?
A direct link is located on the left-hand side of your “My Cal Poly Portal” page. Click/select “My PolyPlan” under the Single Click links to open your plan.
What are the PolyPlanner requirements?
Satisfy two requirements before each quarter’s deadline to prevent receiving a delayed registration appointment for the next term.
- Log in at least once.
- Plan current and future 2 terms (excluding summer). Change plans whenever necessary.
When is the PolyPlanner deadline?
PolyPlanner requirements must be completed by the Add/Drop deadline of each quarter (8th day of instruction). Students who do not meet requirements before the deadline are assigned a registration appointment on the last day during the next registration window.
How do I use PolyPlanner?
How can I confirm Cal Poly received my AP/IB scores?
If we received your scores, you will see them posted on your Poly Profile under “Test Credits” after they have been processed.
What requirements did my AP/IB scores satisfy at Cal Poly?
To see the breakdown of which Cal Poly requirements were met by your by your AP/IB scores, click on “Test Credits Detail" on the upper right-hand side of your Poly Profile.
The right-hand column titled “Exam” shows the scores you received credit for. The left-hand column titled “Cal Poly” shows the requirement(s) that your scores have satisfied.
For more information on how test credit transfers to Cal Pol, visit the Mustang Success Center Block Scheduling support page.