General Requirements – Bachelor's Degree

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General Graduation Requirements

There are eight general requirements which all students must meet in order to earn the bachelor's degree from Cal Poly and participate in commencement.  The more students understand their progress toward meeting these requirements and relate them to the many programs available, the better the chance of creating an exciting educational experience and avoiding errors which may delay graduation.

Students must be formally admitted to the major in which they wish to graduate, and must matriculate, in order to earn a degree.

The specific requirements for each degree program are shown under the academic department offering the major and include a curriculum display with courses listed by Major, Support, Concentration (if applicable), General Education, and Free Electives. Each major has a degree flow chart, which shows the recommended sequence of courses leading to the degree; see the "Degree Flowcharts" link at the top of this page.

Students are responsible for meeting all requirements, and should embrace the responsibility. Advice is available from faculty advisors, college advising centers, the Office of the Registrar, and students’ online Degree Progress Reports. Students should plan their degree programs carefully and review them frequently with their advisors. Students are strongly encouraged to access their Degree Progress Report frequently, including after they register each quarter, to verify that courses in which they enrolled are fulfilling requirements as expected. They are also encouraged to address any unanticipated deficiencies in the information shown on their Degree Progress Report, while realizing that recently received substitutions, transfer credit, etc., may not yet be reflected in the Degree Progress Report. As they approach graduation, careful attention to the Degree Progress Report will help ensure that they complete degree requirements in a timely fashion.

Minimum Requirements for Graduation

  1. Minimum Number of Units
    Baccalaureate degree programs ........... Minimum 180 units
    Individual baccalaureate degree programs may require more than 180 units. (Title 5, Sections 40500, 40501, 40505, 40507) A minimum of 60 units overall must be upper division (defined as any course completed by the student at the 300- or 400-level; this could include transfer work completed at the upper-division level at a four-year institution).
    Degree Minimum # of major units at 300-400 level
    Bachelor of Arts (BA)18
    Bachelor of Science (BS)27
    Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA)27
    Bachelor of Architecture (BArch)41
    Bachelor of Landscape Architecture (BLA)41
  2. Grade Point Average (GPA)
    Students must earn at least a 2.0 GPA in all three of the following: 1) all Higher Education units earned (all college-level work), 2) Cal Poly cumulative units earned, and 3) the major (the courses used to meet Major Courses, see the curriculum sheet; support courses do not count toward major GPA). For a definition of GPA and quality points and hours, please refer to the Grading section of this catalog.
  3. U. S. Cultural Pluralism (USCP) Requirement
    Students must complete the USCP requirement. See the separate section on USCP.
  4. General Education (GE) Requirements
    Students must complete the GE requirements as indicated in the degree program and shown in the GE section of this catalog. A CSU-mandated minimum of 72 units of GE overall must be completed.
  5. Graduation Writing Requirement (GWR)
    Students must demonstrate competency in writing skills (as described below).
  6. Senior Project
    A senior project is  required for all Cal Poly students (as described below).
  7. Academic Residence Requirements
    The minimum requirements for units taken in residence at Cal Poly are:
    • 50 quarter units
    • 36 of the 50 units in residence must be upper division
    • 18 of the 36 upper division units in residence must be in the major
    • 12 units of General Education
    • 28 units in residence of the last 40 units counted toward the degree

      Extension credit or credit by examination may not be used to fulfill the residence requirements. However, a maximum of 36 quarter units of extension credit may be counted toward the bachelor's degree.
  8. Graduation Application Process

    When undergraduate students reach 72% or more of degree completion (78% for Architecture and Landscape Architecture majors) as indicated on their Academic Progress gauge on Poly Profile, the Office of the Registrar will assign an expected graduation term for them that is the greater of either: one year away or four years from their first admit term (five years for students in Architecture and Landscape Architecture). Transfer students will be given no less than three years from their admit term. This process occurs each quarter except summer.

    Students will receive an email from evaluations@calpoly.edu, informing them that their graduation term has been set for them, and that they are expected to graduate by that term.

    The expected graduation term can be viewed in the Student Center and Poly Profile.

    Students are not able to register beyond their expected graduation term.

    However, there may be legitimate reasons why some students need to extend their graduation term beyond the one that is automatically set for them.

    Students with such academically or personally justifiable reasons to extend their graduation term can fill out the Change of Degree Completion Term form and see their advisor for possible approval of the request to extend. The form can be found at: https://registrar.calpoly.edu/registrar_forms.

    This form should also be used by students who wish to move their graduation term earlier than the one assigned for them by the university.

    Once notified that their graduation term has been set, students should access their Degree Progress Report each time they register, to ensure that they are fulfilling the requirements for their degree.

    Students are encouraged to submit any and all paperwork (substitutions, transcripts for requirements completed elsewhere, etc.) in a timely fashion in order to expedite conferral of degrees.

    If a student breaks enrollment prior to completion of degree requirements, she or he may be required to re-enroll and may be held to catalog requirements in effect at that time.

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Final Degree Conferral

When undergraduate students reach 72% or more of degree completion, as indicated on their Academic Progress Gauge on Poly Profile, the Office of the Registrar will assign an expected graduation term for them that is a full four years after their initial admit term, or one year away, whichever is greater. Transfer students will be given an expected graduation term that is three years after their initial admit term. Students will receive an email from the Evaluations Office informing them that their expected grad term has been set for. The expected graduation term can be viewed in the Student Center and Poly Profile.

Graduate (Master's) students must submit a Graduate Application for Graduation Form to the Graduate Education Office at least two quarters prior to the anticipated term of degree completion.

The actual date of graduation (degree conferral) is the end of the quarter in which all requirements have been met. This date may differ from the student’s last quarter of enrollment (for example, a student who completes the Graduation Writing Requirement [GWR] or submits Senior Project for final grading after the last term of enrollment).

Graduating students receive one complimentary diploma. Additional diplomas may be ordered through The University Store. The diploma is not ordered until all degree requirements have been completed. The diploma is mailed to the student’s mailing address by the Evaluations Unit in the Office of the Registrar approximately three to four weeks after the degree has been conferred. It is the student’s responsibility to update her/his mailing address on the Cal Poly Portal portal prior to the end of the final quarter of enrollment, to ensure the receipt of their diploma.

Concentrations and minors are not noted on the diploma; they are noted on the transcript. Latin honors are noted on both the diploma and the transcript; the Distinction notation for Master's students is noted on both the diploma and the transcript.

Once a degree has been awarded, subsequent revision or alteration of any transcript entry is permitted only for correction of proven error as certified by the appropriate academic dean and the Registrar. No changes are made to the academic record 60 days following the degree conferral date.

Commencement

For a student to participate in graduation ceremonies, the student must satisfy at least one of the following:

  • shall have completed all degree requirements and not have participated in a graduation ceremony previously;
  • shall currently be enrolled in classes that would complete all of that student's degree requirements;
  • shall be registered for classes for the following term that would allow the student to complete all of her/his degree requirements.

Students completing all degree requirements in the Winter, Spring or Summer terms, are automatically eligible to participate in the Spring (June) Commencement. Students completing all degree requirements in the Fall term are eligible for Fall (December) Commencement. Graduate (Masters) students must submit a Request for Graduation Evaluation Form to the Graduate Education Office at least two quarters prior to the anticipated term of degree completion.

Commencement ceremonies are coordinated by the Commencement Office, in collaboration with the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and University’s Commencement Operations and Policy Committees, and are held twice annually in June and December. See http://www.commencement.calpoly.edu.

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Graduation Writing Requirement (GWR)

The Board of Trustees of the California State University (CSU) has mandated that all students earning undergraduate or graduate degrees in the CSU must be certified as proficient in writing at the upper-division level.

Students earning a degree from Cal Poly must satisfy the Graduation Writing Requirement (GWR) at Cal Poly. Upper-division transfer students who completed the requirement at another CSU campus prior to enrollment at Cal Poly may transfer completion of the requirement. For more information visit http://www.writingcenter.calpoly.edu/content/gwr/index.

Students are eligible to complete the GWR after reaching 90 units and should complete the requirement before the senior year. Students should review their program requirements to determine which of the following options is the appropriate pathway for GWR completion:

  1. Pass the Writing Proficiency Exam (WPE).

  2. Pass an approved upper-division course with a grade of C or better (C- or below does not qualify) AND receive certification of proficiency in writing based on a 500-word in-class essay. The course may be taken on a credit/no credit basis, but the student must earn a minimum grade of C in order to satisfy the GWR component of the class.

Click here for a complete list of approved GWR certification courses.

Further information on currently available ways to meet this graduation requirement may be obtained from the Writing & Rhetoric Center Office, Agriculture Building (10) Room 130 (805-756-2067), or on the Writing & Rhetoric Center webpage, http://www.writingcenter.calpoly.edu/.

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Non-GE writing courses:
Writing: Advanced Composition
Corporate Communication
Technical Editing
GE C4 literature courses:
British Literature in the Age of Belief: to 1485
British Literature in the Age of Discovery: 1485-1660
British Literature in the Age of Enlightenment: 1660-1798
British Literature in the Age of Romanticism: 1798-1832
British Literature in the Age of Industrialism: 1832-1914
British Literature in the Age of Modernism: 1914-Present
Introduction to Shakespeare
The Literary Sources of the American Character: 1600-1865
The Literary Sources of the American Character: 1865-1914
The Literary Sources of the American Character: 1914-1956
Multiple Voices of Contemporary American Literature
Women Writers of the Twentieth Century
Ethnic American Literature
African American Literature
Gender in Twentieth Century Literature
The Modern Novel
Modern Poetry
Modern Drama
The Bible as Literature and in Literature and the Arts
Film Styles and Genres
Film Directors
Literary Themes
Diversity in Twentieth-Century American Literature
LGBT Literature and Media

Senior Project

Definition: The senior project is a capstone experience required for all Cal Poly students receiving a baccalaureate degree. It integrates theory and application from across the student's undergraduate educational experiences.  The senior project consists of one or more of the following:

  1. a design or construction experience,
  2. an experiment,
  3. a self-guided study or research project,
  4. a presentation,
  5. a report based on internship, co-op, or service learning experience,
  6. a public portfolio display or performance.

Where the senior project does not consist primarily of a written document, departments, may, where they deem appropriate, require some written documentation (length to be determined by the department) to accompany the senior project. The precise nature or form of a senior project is to be determined by the department or program of the student's major. The senior project is normally related to the student's field of study, future employment, and/or scholastic goals, and is carried out under direct faculty supervision.

Expected Outcomes

At the discretion of the major department, students are expected to demonstrate some or all of the following abilities:

  • Reduce a topic to specific points of analysis.
  • Organize the points of analysis into a logical sequence.
  • Apply acquired competencies to the successful completion of a project.
  • Obtain, evaluate, synthesize, and apply project-related information.
  • Develop and follow a project plan.
  • Estimate hours of labor and/or cost of materials necessary to complete a project.
  • Organize, illustrate, and write clear and concise project documentation.
  • Accept supervision when needed.

Requirements

  1. The total number of senior project units must be 1 to 6 quarter units.
  2. Normally 30 hours of student work is required for each unit of credit granted.
  3. Projects requiring an excessive amount of time are discouraged.
  4. The number of students participating in a group senior project should not be so large as to unduly limit individual experience or responsibility and initiative.
  5. The student is responsible for identifying costs and potential funding sources for his or her senior project prior to initiation of the project. Costly projects are discouraged.
  6. It is the student's responsibility to become informed about the university's intellectual properties policy and human subject policy (where applicable).

Library Copy

Senior projects created by Cal Poly students are submitted to Kennedy Library and become part of the library's collection.  For more information and details on the process, please see the Library page on depositing senior projects.

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General Education Mission Statement

General Education: Strengthening intellectual, creative and professional lives

The General Education Program is one of the primary sites for realizing Cal Poly's vision of a comprehensive polytechnic education. The program promotes an understanding and appreciation of the foundational disciplines that ground all intellectual inquiry. It enriches the specialized knowledge acquired in a major program with an understanding of its scientific, humanistic, artistic, and technological contexts. The program imparts knowledge and transferable skills, fosters critical thinking and ethical decision making, supports integrative learning, and prepares students for civic engagement and leadership.

California State University (CSU) General Education Breadth Requirements

Consistent with CSU Executive Order 1100, Cal Poly's General Education Program has been designed to complement major courses and electives completed by each baccalaureate candidate. The General Education program seeks to cultivate graduates who make noteworthy progress toward being well-rounded and informed persons.  GE requirements are designed to provide CSU students with the knowledge, skills, experiences, and perspectives that will enable them to expand their capacities to take part in a wide range of human interests and activities; confront personal, cultural, moral, and social problems that are an inevitable part of human life; and develop an enthusiasm for lifelong learning. Faculty are encouraged to assist students in making connections among disciplines to achieve coherence in the undergraduate educational experience.

Courses approved for GE Breadth should be responsive to the need for students to develop knowledge of, or skills related to:

  • quantitative reasoning
  • information and technological literacy
  • intellectual inquiry
  • global awareness and understanding of human diversity
  • civic engagement
  • communication competence
  • ethical decision-making
  • environmental systems
  • lifelong learning
  • self-development
  • physical and emotional health throughout a lifetime

GE Program Learning Outcomes

Adopted Spring 2014 by the General Education Governance Board

After completing Cal Poly's General Education Program, students will be able to:

  1. Construct and critique arguments from a logical perspective.
  2. Use appropriate rhetorical strategies to connect with diverse audiences through oral, written, and visual modes of communication.
  3. Address real world problems by demonstrating broad disciplinary knowledge, skills, and values in arts, humanities, sciences, and technology.
  4. Understand the value of a general education in relation to major course of study.
  5. Collaborate with people of different backgrounds, values, and experience.
  6. Evaluate global and local issues and their impact on society.
  7. Use intention and reflection to develop and improve one's own learning.

GE Course Substitutions

Students are expected to complete the GE courses published for their degree program. Cal Poly GE courses must be selected from the approved GE list. Substitutions are not permitted except in extraordinary circumstances. Students requesting exceptions must follow petition procedures, outlined on the GE web site. This process may take several weeks.

GE Study Abroad

Students are strongly encouraged to submit a GE Study Abroad petition before going abroad in order to determine which courses will be granted GE credit. For assistance with GE Study Abroad petitions, contact the Cal Poly International Center office.

Transfer Credit

Transfer credit for GE courses is accepted from California institutions, as approved by the Chancellor’s Office. The GE Area letters and numbers at Cal Poly (e.g., GE A1, D4) may be different at other colleges.  For more information, use the  Need help with ASSIST located on the Office of the Registrar’s website.  Some Cal Poly programs specify particular GE courses for Major or Support; these courses must be met with articulated equivalencies. Refer to www.Assist.org for California Community College both CSU GE lists and specific articulation agreements.

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GE Requirements

  • All Cal Poly students are required to take 72 quarter units of General Education.
  • A minimum of 12 units is required in residence.
  • A minimum of 12 units is required at the upper-division level (8 units upper-division for Engineering Programs).
  • For students admitted in Fall 2016 or later, a grade of C- or better is required in one course in each of the following GE Areas: A1 (Expository Writing), A2 (Oral Communication), A3 (Reasoning, Argumentation, Writing), and B1 (Mathematics/Statistics).
  • Double Counting Lower-Division:  Some majors indicate specific GE courses to fulfill both GE and major & support requirements (These are listed in the major's curriculum display).  Students should consult their academic advisors during freshman year for clarification.
  • Double Counting Upper-Division:  Courses from a student's Major department may not be used to fulfill upper-division Arts & Humanities (C4) or upper-division Society and the Individual (D5).
  • All GE courses are 4 units unless otherwise indicated.
  • X = non-unit requirement

Abbreviations in Table Below

  • CAED = College of Architecture & Environmental Design (except Architectural Engineering majors)
  • CAFES = College of Agriculture, Food, & Environmental Sciences (except BioResource Engineering majors)
  • CLA = College of Liberal Arts
  • CSM = College of Science & Mathematics (except LS majors)
  • ENGR = Majors in: College of Engineering (CENG), BioResource Engineering (BRAE) and Architectural Engineering (ARCE)
  • LS = Liberal Studies Majors
  • LAES = Liberal Arts & Engineering Studies Majors
  • OCOB = Orfalea College of Business

GE FOUNDATIONAL LEARNING (Lower-Division Requirements)

Intellectual and Practical Skills, Knowledge of Human Cultures, and Personal and Social Responsibility

Students are encouraged to complete GE Communication (Area A) classes during their freshman year. The three-course Communication sequence provides instruction and practice in writing, speaking, and critical thinking - foundational knowledge students will build upon in upper-division courses. Completion of this sequence is a prerequisite for many other GE classes.

Students are also encouraged to complete their lower-division foundational GE classes in Science and Mathematics (Area B), Arts and Humanities (Area C), and Society and the Individual (Area D) by the end of their sophomore year to give them the skills and knowledge to succeed in all their upper-division classes.

  CLA LAES LS CAED CAFES CSM OCOB ENGR
COMMUNICATION (AREA A)
Expository Writing (A1-Writing Intensive)1444
Oral Communication (A2)1444
Reasoning, Argumentation, Writing (A3-Writing Intensive)1444
Communication Unit Sub-total121212
1

For students admitted in Fall 2016 or later, a grade of C- or better is required in one course in this GE Area.

  CLA LAES LS CAED CAFES CSM OCOB ENGR
SCIENCE AND MATHEMATICS (AREA B)
Mathematics/Statistics (B1)1888
Life Science (B2)444
Physical Science (B3)444
Lab taken with either Life Science or Physical Science (B4)XXX
Science and Mathematics Elective (B1-B5)4
Upper-Division Science and Mathematics (B6)4
Designated Science and Mathematics Courses8
Science and Mathematics Unit Sub-total201628
1

For students admitted in Fall 2016 or later, a grade of C- or better is required in one course in this GE Area.

  CLA LAES LS CAED CAFES CSM OCOB ENGR
ARTS AND HUMANITIES (AREA C)
Literature (C1-Writing Intensive)444
Philosophy (C2-Writing Intensive)444
Fine and Performing Arts (C3)444
Upper-Division Elective (C4)444
Arts and Humanities Elective (C1-C5)4
Arts and Humanities Unit Sub-total162016
  CLA LAES LS CAED CAFES CSM OCOB ENGR
SOCIETY AND THE INDIVIDUAL (AREA D)
The American Experience (D1-40404)444
Political Economy (D2)444
Comparative Social Institutions (D3)444
Self Development (D4; CSU Area E)444
Upper-Division Elective (D5)44
Society and the Individual Unit Sub-total202016

GE INTEGRATED AND APPLIED LEARNING (Upper-Division Requirements)

Synthesis and advanced inquiry across disciplines

Most majors are required to take an one upper-division Arts and Humanities (C4) course, one upper-division Society and the Individual (D5) course and and one upper-division Technology (F) course.  (Note: ENGR follows a slightly different pattern in upper-division.)  These GE courses are integrative in nature and require students to apply knowledge and understanding acquired in lower-division courses.  Courses in these areas achieve depth in an advanced study of a subject to new but related areas of inquiry.

  CLA LAES LS CAED CAFES CSM OCOB ENGR
UPPER-DIVISION
Arts and Humanities (C4-Writing Intensive)444
Society and the Individual (D5-Writing Intensive)44
Technology (Area F)44
Upper-division courses unit sub-total12124
GE TOTAL72 units72 units72 units

General Education Courses

COMMUNICATION (AREA A)

  CLA LAES LS CAED CAFES CSM OCOB ENGR
COMMUNICATION (AREA A)121212
Expository Writing (A1)444
Writing & Rhetoric for English as a Second Language Students
Writing and Rhetoric
  CLA LAES LS CAED CAFES CSM OCOB ENGR
Oral Communication (A2)444
Public Speaking
Principles of Oral Communication
Public Speaking
Principles of Oral Communication
  CLA LAES LS CAED CAFES CSM OCOB ENGR
Reasoning, Argumentation, and Writing (A3)444
Argument and Advocacy
Reasoning, Argumentation, and Writing
Reasoning, Argumentation, and Writing
Reasoning, Argumentation and Professional Writing
Technical Writing for Engineers
Reasoning, Argumentation, and Writing
Reasoning, Argumentation and Professional Writing
Technical Writing for Engineers
Logic and Argumentative Writing

SCIENCE AND MATHEMATICS (AREA B)

  CLA LAES LS CAED CAFES CSM OCOB ENGR
SCIENCE & MATHEMATICS (AREA B)201628
Mathematics / Statistics (B1)888
Calculus I
Calculus II
Calculus III
Nature of Modern Math
Precalculus Algebra I
Precalculus Algebra II
Precalculus Algebra
Precalculus Trigonometry
Calculus I
Calculus II
Calculus III
Calculus for the Life Sciences I
Calculus for the Life Sciences II
Calculus for Architecture and Construction Management
Calculus for Business and Economics
Mathematics for Elementary Teaching I
Statistical Reasoning
Introduction to Statistical Concepts and Methods
Applied Statistics for the Life Sciences
Statistical Inference for Management I
Statistical Inference for Management II (5)
Applied Experimental Design and Regression Models
  CLA LAES LS CAED CAFES CSM OCOB ENGR
Life Science (B2) (B2&4=lab course) 444
People, Pests and Plagues (B2 & B4)
Biological Anthropology
Principles of Animal Science
General Biology (B2 & B4)
Plant Diversity and Ecology (B2 & B4)
Biology of Sex
Introduction to Cell and Molecular Biology (B2 & B4)
Wildlife Conservation Biology
General Botany (B2 & B4)
Microbiology (B2 & B4)
General Microbiology I (B2 & B4) (5)
For Engineering students only; concurrent enrollment required:
Life Science for Engineers
Bioengineering Fundamentals
  CLA LAES LS CAED CAFES CSM OCOB ENGR
Physical Science (B3) (B3&4=lab course)444
Introduction to the Solar System
Introduction to Stars and Galaxies
World of Chemistry (B3 & B4)
Survey of Chemistry (B3 & B4)
General Chemistry for Physical Science and Engineering I (B3 & B4)
General Chemistry for Physical Science and Engineering II (B3 & B4)
General Chemistry for Agriculture and Life Science I (B3 & B4)
Introduction to Geology
Earthquakes
General Physics I (B3 & B4)
General Physics II (B3 & B4)
General Physics IA
Introductory Physics
Introduction to Meteorology
Contemporary Physics for Nonscientists
College Physics I
College Physics II (B3 & B4)
General Physics I (B3 & B4)
General Physics II (B3 & B4)
General Physics III (B3 & B4)
General Physics IA
Matter and Energy (B3 & B4)
  CLA LAES LS CAED CAFES CSM OCOB ENGR
One lab B4 taken with B2 or B3 courses (B4)XXX
  CLA LAES LS CAED CAFES CSM OCOB ENGR
CLA, LS : LAES students select 1 course from B1-B4 or B5400
Area B5
CLA and LS students: Select one course from B1-B5.
Environmental Biology and Conservation
Human Genetics
Biology of Cancer
Plants, People and Civilization
Nutrition
Fossils and the History of Life
Landscape Ecology: Concepts, Issues and Interrelationships
Physical Oceanography
Biopsychology
Behavioral Genetics
Introductory Soil Science
  CLA LAES LS CAED CAFES CSM OCOB ENGR
Science and Mathematics Upper-Division Elective for ENGR only (B6)004
Fundamentals of Seismology
Vector Analysis
Linear Analysis II
Complex Analysis I
Solid State Physics
and Solid State Physics Laboratory
Nonlinear Dynamical Systems
Statistical Methods for Engineers
Probability and Statistics for Engineers and Scientists
Probability and Random Processes for Engineers
  CLA LAES LS CAED CAFES CSM OCOB ENGR
Additional Science and Mathematics for ENGR only008

ARTS AND HUMANITIES (AREA C)

  CLA LAES LS CAED CAFES CSM OCOB ENGR
ARTS AND HUMANITIES (AREA C)162016
Literature (C1)444
Masterworks of British Literature through the Eighteenth Century
Masterworks of British Literature from the Late 18th Century to the Present
American Literature: Beginnings to 1865
American Literature: 1830 to the Present
Great Books I: Introduction to Classical Literature
Great Books II: Medieval to Enlightenment Literature
Great Books III: Romanticism to Modernism Literature
Critical Reading in French Literature
Critical Reading in German Literature
Masterworks of British Literature from the Late 18th Century to the Present
Great Books I: Introduction to Classical Literature
Introduction to Hispanic Readings
  CLA LAES LS CAED CAFES CSM OCOB ENGR
Philosophy (C2)444
Philosophical Classics: Knowledge and Reality
Philosophical Classics: Ethics and Political Philosophy
Philosophical Classics: Knowledge and Reality
Philosophical Classics: Ethics and Political Philosophy
  CLA LAES LS CAED CAFES CSM OCOB ENGR
Fine and Performing Arts (C3)444
History of Structures
History of World Architecture: Prehistory - Middle Ages
History of World Architecture: Middle Ages - 18th Century
History of World Architecture: 18th Century - Present
The Fundamentals of Drawing
Introduction to Art
Survey of Western Art
Basic Digital Photography
Beginning Sculpture
Performance of Literature
Dance Appreciation
History of Landscape Architecture: Ancient Civilizations through Colonial America
History of Modern and Contemporary Landscape Architecture
Introduction to Music Theory
Music Appreciation
Jazz Styles (USCP)
Popular Music of the USA (USCP)
Music of the 60's: War and Peace (USCP)
Introduction to Theatre
Theatre History I
Theatre History II
  CLA LAES LS CAED CAFES CSM OCOB ENGR
Arts and Humanities Upper-Division Elective (C4)444
Courses from student's Major Dept do not receive C4 credit
Topics in Architectural History
Native American Architecture and Place (USCP)
Art History - Nineteenth Century Art
History of Photography
Asian Art Topics: National, Religious, and Intellectual Movements
Michelangelo
Topics in Renaissance Art
Group Performance of Literature
Cultural Influence on Dance in America (USCP)
British Literature in the Age of Belief: to 1485
British Literature in the Age of Discovery: 1485-1660
British Literature in the Age of Enlightenment: 1660-1798
British Literature in the Age of Romanticism: 1798-1832
British Literature in the Age of Industrialism: 1832-1914
British Literature in the Age of Modernism: 1914-Present
Introduction to Shakespeare
The Literary Sources of the American Character: 1600-1865
The Literary Sources of the American Character: 1865-1914
The Literary Sources of the American Character: 1914-1956
Multiple Voices of Contemporary American Literature
Women Writers of the Twentieth Century (USCP)
Ethnic American Literature (USCP)
African American Literature (USCP)
Gender in Twentieth Century Literature (USCP)
The Modern Novel
Modern Poetry
Modern Drama
The Bible as Literature and in Literature and the Arts
World Cinema
Film Styles and Genres
Film Directors
Literary Themes
Diversity in Twentieth-Century American Literature (USCP)
LGBT Literature and Media (USCP)
Creative Nonfiction
Fiction Writing
Poetry Writing
Chicano/a Non-Fiction Literature (USCP)
Native American Architecture and Place (USCP)
Cultural Production and Ethnicity
Ethnicity and the Land (USCP)
Significant Works in French
French Literature in English Translation
Significant Works in German
German Literature in English Translation
Values and Technology
Topics and Issues in Values, Media and Culture
British Literature in the Age of Enlightenment: 1660-1798
British Literature in the Age of Romanticism: 1798-1832
Social Ethics (USCP)
The Literary Sources of the American Character: 1865-1914
The Literary Sources of the American Character: 1914-1956
Multiple Voices of Contemporary American Literature
Women Writers of the Twentieth Century (USCP)
African American Literature (USCP)
Modern Drama
Literary Themes
Values and Technology
Topics and Issues in Values, Media and Culture
Music and Society (USCP)
Women in Music
Ethnicity and the Land (USCP)
Early Greek Philosophy through Plato
Aristotle and Hellenistic Philosophy
Medieval Philosophy
Early Modern Rationalism
Early Modern Empiricism
Kant and 19th Century European Philosophy
History of Analytic Philosophy
Phenomenology
Existentialism
Asian Philosophy
Philosophy of Science
Philosophy of Technology
Ethics, Science and Technology
Robot Ethics
Technologies and Ethics of Warfare
Ethics
History of Ethics
Political Philosophy
Philosophy of Law
Social Ethics (USCP)
Feminist Ethics, Gender, Sexuality and Society (USCP)
Business Ethics
Biomedical Ethics
Environmental Ethics
Professional Ethics
Philosophy of Religion
Continental Political Philosophy
Aesthetics
Philosophy of Literature
Postmodernism
Religions of Asia
Abrahamic Religions: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam
Judaism
Hinduism
Buddhism
Christianity
Islam
Religion, Gender, and Society (USCP)
Spiritual Extremism: Asceticism, Mysticism, and Madness
Religion and Violence
Religion and Contemporary Values
Significant Works in Spanish
Spanish and Latin American Film
Chicano/a Authors (USCP)
Hispanic Literature in English Translation
Chicano/Latino Writers in the United States (USCP)
Topics in Diversity on the American Stage
Theatre in the United States
Global Theatre and Performance
Feminist Ethics, Gender, Sexuality and Society (USCP)
Religion, Gender, and Society (USCP)
Humanities in World Cultures
Humanities in Chicano/a Culture (USCP)

CAED, CAFES, CSM and OCOB students:  Select any course from C1 - C5

  CLA LAES LS CAED CAFES CSM OCOB ENGR
Arts and Humanities Elective (C5)040
Area C5 Courses
Intermediate Mandarin Chinese I
Intermediate Mandarin Chinese II
Intermediate Mandarin Chinese III
Intermediate French I
Intermediate French II
Intermediate French III
Intermediate German I
Intermediate German II
Intermediate German III
Intermediate Italian I
Intermediate Japanese I
Intermediate Spanish I
Intermediate Spanish II
Intermediate Spanish III

SOCIETY & THE INDIVIDUAL (AREA D/E)

  CLA LAES LS CAED CAFES CSM OCOB ENGR
SOCIETY AND THE INDIVIDUAL202016
The American Experience (40404) (D1)444
Race, Culture and Politics in the United States (USCP)
United States History to 1865 (USCP)
United States History Since 1865 (USCP)
American Cultures (USCP)
Freedom and Equality in American History (USCP)
Race, Culture and Politics in the United States (USCP)
Freedom and Equality in American History (USCP)
American and California Government
Introduction to Women's and Gender Studies in the United States (USCP)
  CLA LAES LS CAED CAFES CSM OCOB ENGR
Political Economy (D2)444
Survey of Economics
Macroeconomics
Modern Political Economy
Political Economy of Latin America and the Middle East
Survey of Economics
Modern Political Economy
International Political Economy
  CLA LAES LS CAED CAFES CSM OCOB ENGR
Comparative Social Institutions (D3)444
Cultural Anthropology
World Prehistory
Global Origins of United States Cultures (USCP)
Survey of Indigenous Studies (USCP)
Survey of Africana Studies (USCP)
Survey of Latino/a Studies (USCP)
Survey of Asian American Studies (USCP)
Human Geography
World History I
Comparative Social Movements
World History, Beginnings to 1000
World History, 1000 - 1800
World History, 1800 - Present
The World at War
Creating Sustainable Communities I
Creating Sustainable Communities II
Global Origins of United States Cultures (USCP)
Comparative Social Movements
World History, 1800 - Present
Religion, Dialogue, and Society
Sociocultural Dimensions of Work and Leisure
Comparative Societies
  CLA LAES LS CAED CAFES CSM OCOB ENGR
Self Development (D4, CSU Area E) 444
Media, Self and Society
Active Wellness
Principles of Environmental Design
Food and Nutrition: Customs and Culture (USCP)
Media, Self and Society
Healthy Living
Personal Health: A Multicultural Approach (USCP)
Women's Health Issues (USCP)
General Psychology
General Psychology
  CLA LAES LS CAED CAFES CSM OCOB ENGR
Society and the Individual Upper-Division Elective (D5)440
Courses from student's major do not receive D5 credit.
Pre-Columbian Mesoamerica
Indigenous South Americans
Sex, Death, and Human Nature
Human Behavioral Ecology
Human Cultural Adaptations
Managing Technology in the International Legal Environment
Intercultural Communication (USCP)
Communication, Media, and Politics
Intergroup Dialogues
Reflections on Biking, Walking and the City
Cities in a Global World
Economics of Poverty, Discrimination and Immigration (USCP)
Comparative Economic Systems
Fire and Society
Hip-Hop, Poetics and Politics (USCP)
African American Cultural Images (USCP)
Native American Cultural Images (USCP)
Asian American Cultural Images (USCP)
Mexican American Cultural Images (USCP)
The Chinese American Experience (USCP)
The Filipina/o American Experience (USCP)
Queer Ethnic Studies (USCP)
Gender, Race, Class, Nation in Global Engineering, Technology & International Development
Critical Race Theory (USCP)
The Social Construction of Whiteness (USCP)
Geography of United States
Geography of Resource Utilization
Global Geography
Geography of Latin America
Geography of the Caribbean
The Witch-Hunts in Europe, 1400-1800
European Thought 1800-2000
The Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade
Cultures of West Africa and the African Diaspora
East Asian Culture and Civilization
Modern East Asia
The Lure of the Sea
The City in the Modern World
Modern South and Southeast Asia
Colonial and Revolutionary America
Civil War America
Modern America
The Historical Novel in the United States, 1960s to the Present
United States Foreign Relations since 1898
Modern Europe, 1789-1914
Modern Europe, 1914-Present
Britain at War: The British, the Americans and the Struggle for Freedom, 1939-1945
Colonial Latin America
Modern Latin America
The Scientific Revolution, c. 1500-1800
Economics of Poverty, Discrimination and Immigration (USCP)
East Asian Culture and Civilization
The Lure of the Sea
Modern America
The Historical Novel in the United States, 1960s to the Present
Modern Europe, 1789-1914
Modern Europe, 1914-Present
Sexuality Studies
Appropriate Technology for the World's People: Development
Critical Issues in Latin American Studies
London: From Roman Colony to World Capital
Sport and Gender (USCP)
Sports, Media and American Popular Culture (USCP)
Fire and Society
Human Dimensions in Natural Resources Management
Social Dimensions of Sustainable Food and Fiber Systems
Global Political Issues
U.S. and China in the Contemporary World
Critical Issues in American Politics
Authoritarian and Democratic Rule
Early American Political Thought
Contemporary American Political Thought
Appropriate Technology for the World's People: Development
Intergroup Dialogues
Environmental Psychology
Psychology of Aging
Conflict Resolution: Violent and Nonviolent
Approaches to Religion and Spirituality
Global Race and Ethnic Relations
Sociology of the Life Cycle
Social Change (USCP)
Sociology of Religion
Appropriate Technology for the World's People: Development
Contemporary Issues in Women's and Gender Studies (USCP)
Contemporary Issues in Queer Studies (USCP)
Women, Gender and Sexuality in Global Perspective
Sexuality Studies
Queer Ethnic Studies (USCP)
Gender, Race, Class, Nation in Global Engineering, Technology & International Development
Language, Technology and Society

TECHNOLOGY UPPER-DIVISION ELECTIVE (AREA F)

  CLA LAES LS CAED CAFES CSM OCOB ENGR
TECHNOLOGY UPPER-DIVISION ELECTIVE (F)440
Organic Crop Production
Plants, Food, and Biotechnology
Air and Space
Organic Crop Production
Cal Poly Land: Nature, Technology, and Society
The Global Environment
Holistic Management
Holistic Management
Longitude, Navigation, and Timekeeping
Genetic Engineering Technology
Plants, Food, and Biotechnology
Irrigation Water Management
Energy for a Sustainable Society
Genetic Engineering Technology
Chemical and Biological Warfare
Sustainability and the Built Environment
Digital Cities
Disaster-Resistant Sustainable Communities
Computers and Society
Computers for Poets
Computational Art
Practical Computer Security for Everyone
The Global Environment
Microcontrollers for Everyone
Transportation and Manufacturing in the Twenty-First Century
The Global Environment
Engineering for the Environment
Introduction to Air Pollution
Soil, Water, and Civilization
Gender, Race, Culture, Science and Technology (USCP)
Food Technology for the Consumer
The Global Environment
Web and Print Publishing
History of Network Technology
Living in a Material World
Air and Space
Computers for Poets
Appropriate Technology for the World's People: Design
Human Factors and Technology
Topics in Public Engagements with STEM
Cal Poly Land: Nature, Technology, and Society
The Global Environment
Packaging Fundamentals
Packaging Polymers and Processing
The World of Spatial Data and Geographic Information Technology
Living in a Material World
Consumer Energy Guide
Everything is Designed: The Invention and Evolution of Products
World Aquaculture: Applications, Methodologies and Trends
Technologies for Ocean Discovery
Technology of Wildland Fire Management
The World of Spatial Data and Geographic Information Technology
Water Systems Technology, Issues and Impacts
World Food Systems
Nuclear Weapons in the Post-9/11 World
Energy, Society and the Environment
Appropriate Technology for the World's People: Design
Religion, Science and Technology
Technology in London
Nuclear Science and Society
The Global Environment
Selected Environmental Issues of California's Central Coast
Cal Poly Land: Nature, Technology, and Society
World Food Systems
The Global Environment
Appropriate Technology for the World's People: Design
Gender, Race, Culture, Science and Technology (USCP)

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United States Cultural Pluralism (USCP)

United States Cultural Pluralism (USCP) courses must focus on all of the following:

  1. One or more diverse groups, as defined in the Cal Poly Statement on Diversity, whose contributions to contemporary American society have been impeded by conflict or restricted opportunities
  2. Contemporary social issues resulting from conflict or restricted opportunities, including, but not limited to, problems associated with discrimination based on age, ethnicity, gender, nationality, abilities, religion,  sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, or race
  3. Critical thinking skills used by students to approach these contemporary social issues, examine their own attitudes, and consider the diverse perspectives of others
  4. The contributions of people from diverse groups to contemporary American society
In addition to satisfying these criteria, USCP courses must also address the Diversity Learning Objectives.
 
Students are required to complete one USCP course. This course also fulfills a requirement for Major, Support, General Education, or Free Elective category.
 

The following courses fulfill the United States Cultural Pluralism requirement.

ANT 415Native American Cultures4
ARCH 326Native American Architecture and Place (C4) 14
COMS 316Intercultural Communication (D5) 14
CRP 215Planning for and with Multiple Publics4
DANC 321Cultural Influence on Dance in America (C4) 14
ECON 303Economics of Poverty, Discrimination and Immigration (D5) 14
ENGL 345Women Writers of the Twentieth Century (C4) 14
ENGL 346Ethnic American Literature (C4) 14
ENGL 347African American Literature (C4) 14
ENGL 349Gender in Twentieth Century Literature (C4) 14
ENGL 381Diversity in Twentieth-Century American Literature (C4) 14
ENGL 382LGBT Literature and Media (C4) 14
ES 112Race, Culture and Politics in the United States (D1) 14
ES 114Introduction to Ethnic Studies: Race in the United States4
ES 212Global Origins of United States Cultures (D3) 14
ES 215Planning for and with Multiple Publics4
ES 241Survey of Indigenous Studies (D3) 14
ES 242Survey of Africana Studies (D3) 14
ES 243Survey of Latino/a Studies (D3) 14
ES 244Survey of Asian American Studies (D3) 14
ES 300Chicano/a Non-Fiction Literature (C4) 14
ES 310Hip-Hop, Poetics and Politics (D5) 14
ES 320African American Cultural Images (D5) 14
ES 321Native American Cultural Images (D5) 14
ES 322Asian American Cultural Images (D5) 14
ES 323Mexican American Cultural Images (D5) 14
ES 325Sexuality and Gender in African American Communities4
ES 326Native American Architecture and Place (C4) 14
ES 330The Chinese American Experience (D5) 14
ES 335The Filipina/o American Experience (D5) 14
ES 345Queer Ethnic Studies (D5) 14
ES 350Gender, Race, Culture, Science and Technology (Area F) 14
ES 360Ethnicity and the Land (C4) 14
ES 380Critical Race Theory (D5)4
ES 381The Social Construction of Whiteness (D5) 14
FSN 250Food and Nutrition: Customs and Culture (D4) 14
HIST 201United States History to 1865 (D1) 14
HIST 202United States History Since 1865 (D1) 14
HIST 206American Cultures (D1) 14
HIST 207Freedom and Equality in American History (D1) 14
HIST 208Survey of California History4
HIST 406African-American History from 18654
HIST 435American Women's History from 18704
HNRS 112Race, Culture and Politics in the United States (D1) 14
HNRS 207Freedom and Equality in American History (D1) 14
HNRS 212Global Origins of United States Cultures (D3) 14
HNRS 303Economics of Poverty, Discrimination and Immigration (D3) 14
HNRS 336Social Ethics (C4) 14
HNRS 345Women Writers of the Twentieth Century4
HNRS 347African American Literature (C4) 14
JOUR 219Multicultural Society and the Mass Media4
KINE 255Personal Health: A Multicultural Approach (D4) 14
KINE 260Women's Health Issues (D4) 14
KINE 323Sport and Gender (D5) 14
KINE 324Sports, Media and American Popular Culture (D5) 14
MU 221Jazz Styles (C3) 14
MU 227Popular Music of the USA (C3) 14
MU 229Music of the 60's: War and Peace (C3) 14
MU 325America's Music4
MU 328Women in Music (C4) 14
NR 360Ethnicity and the Land (C4) 14
PHIL 335Social Ethics (C4) 14
PHIL 336Feminist Ethics, Gender, Sexuality and Society (C4) 14
POLS 310The Politics of Race, Class, Gender and Sexuality4
POLS 343Civil Rights in America4
POLS 445Voting Rights and Representation4
PSY 260African American Psychology4
PSY 372Multicultural Psychology4
PSY 475The Social Psychology of Prejudice4
RELS 370Religion, Gender, and Society (C4) 14
SOC 316American Ethnic Minorities4
SOC 327Social Change (D5) 14
SPAN 111Elementary Hispanic Language and Culture4
SPAN 206Spanish for Heritage Speakers4
SPAN 340Chicano/a Authors (C4) 14
SPAN 351Chicano/Latino Writers in the United States (C4) 14
TH 305Topics in Diversity on the American Stage4
WGS 201Introduction to Women's and Gender Studies in the United States (D1) 14
WGS 301Contemporary Issues in Women's and Gender Studies (D5) 14
WGS 302Contemporary Issues in Queer Studies (D5) 14
WGS 336Feminist Ethics, Gender, Sexuality and Society (C4) 14
WGS 345Queer Ethnic Studies (D5) 14
WGS 350Gender, Race, Culture, Science and Technology (Area F) 14
WGS 370Religion, Gender, and Society (C4) 14
WGS 435American Women's History from 18704
WGS 450Feminist Theory4
WLC 312Humanities in Chicano/a Culture (C4) 14
1

Course also satisfies GE requirement

Choice of Catalog / Catalog Rights

Cal Poly issues a new catalog every two years, and the requirements for degree programs may change from one catalog to the next. Students have the right to choose the catalog they will use, as described in Section 40401 of Title 5 of the California Code of Regulations.

An undergraduate student remaining in attendance in regular sessions at any California State University campus, at any California Community College, or any combination of California community colleges and campuses of the California State University may, for purposes of meeting graduation requirements, elect to meet the catalog requirements in effect at the campus from which the student will graduate either:

  1. at the term the student began such attendance, or
  2. at the term of entrance to the campus granting the degree, or
  3. at the term of graduation, or
  4. as allowed by campus policy: Cal Poly also allows students to elect the requirements of any catalog in effect during their regular attendance.

Campus authorities may authorize or require substitutions for discontinued courses. A campus may require a student changing his or her major or any minor field of study to complete the major or minor requirements in effect at the time of the change.

For purposes of this section, “attendance” means attendance in at least one semester or two quarters each university year. Absence due to an approved leave of absence or for attendance at another accredited institution of higher learning shall not be considered an interruption in attendance, if the absence does not exceed two years.

Choice of Catalog Older than 10 years for Returning Students

Returning students may request to complete their degrees on a catalog older than 10 years only if all remaining degree requirements at the time they left Cal Poly do not exceed 16 units. The decision to approve or disapprove a student's request is based on: (1) her/his willingness to complete the remaining degree requirements within a specified timeframe, and (2) her/his ability to demonstrate, with written documentation, reasonable currency of knowledge and skills in her/his degree field to the satisfaction of the faculty in the applicable major, as certified by the department chair. Both the college dean and the Senior Vice Provost for Academic Programs must give approval.

Currency in the degree field may be demonstrated by additional coursework, in addition to the remaining degree requirements on the student's original catalog, and/or by relevant work experience, to be determined by the department chair. Because Cal Poly degrees are always granted for the term in which requirements are completed, additional requirements may vary, depending on the amount of time elapsed and on the major field, in order to reconcile the curriculum of an older catalog with current trends in the academic discipline.

The expiration of a catalog is determined by adding 10 years to the last term in which that catalog was in effect (e.g., the 2015-17 catalog will be “older than 10 years” after Spring Quarter 2027).

Students are not allowed to complete a degree that is no longer offered by the University.

Note: In addition to the remaining degree requirements on the student’s catalog, s/he may also be required to complete the GWR. Check with the Evaluations Unit in the Office of the Registrar.