Prospective Freshmen Students


Prospective freshmen students should review all admission information posted on the Cal Poly Admissions web site. Admission to Cal Poly is all handled by the Admissions Office, not by individual academic departments. You can view prospective student information available 24/7 through Cal Poly's Admissions web site. The site contains all official admission information and most questions regarding the admission process and qualifications are answered on this site.

Please note that a portfolio is NOT required for freshman applications.

Fall Quarter Major & Support Courses

It is important to understand the sequential nature of the Architecture curriculum. Many courses are delivered as a series (i.e., ARCH 131, 132, 133). Each course in such a series is offered only once a year and is the prerequisite to the next course. These series are arranged to be taken in one academic year. Students who do not follow the recommended schedule of courses may find that it takes them longer to complete the program.

Typical Fall Quarter Courses

The following courses are critical to take unless you have received AP credit for them.

EDES 123 Introduction to Architecture & Environmental Design (1)
Arch 131 Design & Visual Communication 1.1 (4)
Arch 101 Survey of Architectural Education & Practice (1)
Math 141 Calculus I (4)
ENGL 134 Writing: Exposition or COMS 101 or 102 Speech (4)

Do not take more than 16 units during your first quarter. Taking a slightly lighter load your first quarter can help with your transition to and success as a student at Cal Poly.

Getting A Head Start

We highly recommend that students look into taking “Advanced Placement (AP) Tests” at their current school. A counselor/advisor should be able to tell you whether there is a testing opportunity at your school or in your geographic area. By passing the various AP tests, it is possible for students to obtain college units in English, Calculus, and Physics. If you obtain AP credit, you will find that you can take a reduced unit load for several quarters and still complete the program in the prescribed time. Many students find this of great benefit, since architecture is a very demanding program.


​For assistance with using the Curriculum Flowchart, please contact the Architecture department.


Updated 12.29.16

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