About the Cal Poly Architecture Department

Architecture is one of five departments in the College of Architecture and Environmental Design (CAED), along with Architectural EngineeringCity and Regional PlanningConstruction Management, and Landscape Architecture.  This unique combination of disciplines, all responsible in some way for the conception and production of the built environment, makes possible an integrative and interdisciplinary approach to the learning of architecture. For additional information, visit the CAED's web page.

Program Admissions Statistics

Acceptance into Architecture at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo is highly competitive due to its reputation for excellence. The program receives many more applications than it can admit students. For your information, we are including the following statistics from Fall 2016:

  • We received 1,210 freshman applications; 138 enrolled as freshman that fall (11.4% enrollment rate)
  • We received 224 applicants wishing to transfer into the program; 15 enrolled in their third year that fall (6.7% enrollment rate)
  • The Average High School GPA was 4.04
  • The Average SAT Reading score was 618
  • The Average SAT Math score was 662
  • The Average ACT Composite score was 29.4

Our students are some of the best and brightest in California. We encourage you to apply and join their ranks.

DesignIntelligence: Cal Poly Architecture Program consistantly ranks among the best in the Nation!

The Architecture Department ranked first in the nation among undergraduate programs in the 2014 DesignIntelligence survey ranking public and private degree programs nationally. Since then, we have held tight to the second highest ranking for 2015, 2016, and now 2017. Cal Poly’s Architecture program has made the nation’s Top 20 list since 2003 with a ranking of sixth or better.

Polytechnic Education

The education offered in the Architecture Department at Cal Poly is based on the polytechnic tradition. Graduates receive an education that finds its identity at the intersection of art and science. This curricular approach has been central to the Department’s tradition for 45 years and provides our graduates with a balanced education enabling them to be responsible design professionals in an ever-changing world.

Active Learning: Learn by Doing

Cal Poly’s historical commitment to the pedagogy of learn by doing means an emphasis on hand-on, project-based learning that amplifies the interdisciplinary opportunities offered by the College’s five departments.  Students learn to think creatively and critically, while directly applying their knowledge through a design-based education.

Visit Us

We invite you to visit our campus and schedule a tour of the College of Architecture and Environmental Design (CAED) facilities. The CAED offers drop-in tours every Monday and Friday from 10:00am -10:50am, starting in the lobby of building 05, room 212. No registration is required. A minimum of two week's notice is necessary for scheduling group guided tours. For more information on tours or scheduling a special tour, please see the the CAED Tours webpage.

A self-guided tour of the CAED is also available for unscheduled visits and can be downloaded HERE or picked up at the CAED lobby.  

Address and directions

Cal Poly State University
Architecture Department
Bldg 05-212A
​1 Grand Avenue
San Luis Obispo, CA 93407

Phone: 805.756.1316
Fax: 805.756.1500

ARCH Dept map closeup

Campus Map (flashmap)
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Driving to San Luis Obispo

California Highways 101 provide an easy and beautiful scenic ride from San Francisco or Los Angeles. Take the Cal Poly exit and proceed on Grand Avenue towards the North till you encounter the Main North campus entrance. Please request a visitor's parking permit and ask for directions to the Architecture Department. Please see Cal Poly Visitor Parking.

For Architecture Department Administration and Staff contacts, visit the Faculty & Staff Directory. For additional Cal Poly information, go to the Cal Poly Visitors web page. 


Updated 07.20.17

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