Admission to Master's Degree & Graduate Certificate Programs

The California State University System has changed application systems. Applications for Cal Poly are received through Cal State Apply. The application cycle for Winter 2018 at Cal Poly is open. Be sure to visit the
Cal Poly Admissions Website for important information about applying to Graduate Programs at Cal Poly.

If you have questions about the program to which you would like to apply (program admissions requirements, pre-requisites, curriculum) contact the Faculty Graduate Coordinator for your program.


Important Application Info

The second question of the application states: Have you previously attended a CSU campus and are returning to complete that earlier program of study?
NEW APPLICANTS TO A MASTER’S PROGRAM will answer NO to this question. If you answer YES incorrectly, you may miss your program deadline.
General Information on Quadrants 1-3 and 4
  • Quadrants 1-3 (Personal Information, Academic History, Supporting Information) are the SAME for all 23 California State University Campuses and are for both undergraduate and graduate applicants.
  • Quadrant 4 (Program Materials) is specific to Graduate Education at Cal Poly. Answer all sections, there is duplication in some University Campuses and are for both undergraduate and graduate applicants.
Quadrant 2 (Academic History)
Graduate applicants will only enter classes manually that are in progress, or classes that are planned. You will NOT need to enter coursework manually if you have already completed your undergraduate degree and have a complete unofficial transcript to upload in Quadrant 4 (Program Materials).
Quadrant 3 (Supporting Information)
  • Applicants may, or may not, have Experiences, Achievements or the specific Documents to upload. This area is NOT specific to Graduate Education. Graduate Applicants will upload solicited documents to Quadrant 4 (Program Materials).
  • You can be specific about your program of interest in your Statement of Purpose, even though the application recommends to keep it general. Keep in mind that this area serves all 23 California State University Campuses, graduate and undergraduate applicants. You can, and should, upload your Statement of Purpose in Quadrant 4 (Program Materials) that is specific to
Quadrant 4 (Program Materials)
  • SPECIFIC TO GRADUATE PROGRAMS AT CAL POLY: Be sure to upload all items solicited. You can click on the link provided to see if your program of interest has a test requirement. Applicants **MUST** provide UNOFFICIAL TRANSCRIPTS in their application. Unofficial transcripts can be uploaded and it can be a screen shot.
  • It is important to check the website of your program of interest. If your program of interest solicits additional information to that which is listed in the application in Quadrant 4 (Program Materials), you can upload these items in Quadrant 4 (Program Materials) in the extra fields provided that are named: “Additional Unofficial Transcript” or “Test Score Report”. Your program will see this uploaded information as provided even though the name of the field seems misleading.
Official Transcripts
OFFICIAL TRANSCRIPTS must be sent to the Admissions Office by the application deadline. If you are a Cal Poly undergraduate student you do not need to request that official transcripts be sent to Cal Poly. However, the Cal Poly Admissions Office must have official transcripts from any institution where work was attempted.
Once Submitted
  • Once your application is submitted Cal Poly will begin to review it. If your application is not complete when it is submitted it will not be reviewed and your application will be denied. Do not submit your application and plan to return to it later to amend it or to later upload documents
  • You will receive confirmation from the Cal Poly Admissions Office once your application has been received from Cal State Apply.
  • Be sure to set up your Cal Poly Portal when you receive access from the Cal Poly Admissions Office by email.
  • Be sure to review your “To Do List” on your Cal Poly Portal, and check it periodically as this is how the Admissions Office will communicate with you and also let you know if anything is pending (Official Transcripts, for example) for your application.
  • You will be notified of the decision on your application by email from the Cal Poly Admission Office. Though you may be recommended for admission by your program, only the Cal Poly Admissions Office can make an offer of
Intent-to-Enroll Deposit
In order to secure your enrollment Cal Poly needs to receive notification of your intent-to-enroll and a $250 deposit within 30-days of being accepted into your graduate program. This deposit will be applied towards your first quarter tuition and fees. There are no partial payments and financial aid will not cover the deposit. It is a non-refundable deposit and will not be returned if the applicant does not register for classes in the quarter they are accepted.