Fire Protection Engineering

Graduate certificate programs in Fire Protection Engineering Science and Fire Protection Engineering Applications provide students with the knowledge, skills and tools needed to solve FPE problems and develop fire safety design solutions in a variety of professional settings.

The FPE Science certificate highlights the science and engineering principles of fire protection engineering, including thermal sciences and flammability characteristics of different materials. Alternatively, the FPE Applications certificate emphasizes the fire service aspect of the industry, including courses that identify fire safety codes and regulations, understanding evacuation models, and information about fire detection and alarm systems.

As only the third set of graduate programs in FPE in the United States and the first one to be located on the West Coast, one goal of this program is to help fill the increasing demand for fire protection engineers, particularly in California and other western states, where the lack of educational programs in FPE has resulted in a shortag.

For admission as a classified graduate student, an applicant should hold a bachelor's degree in engineering, fire science, fire protection and safety, or a closely related field from a regionally accredited institution, college, or university. An undergraduate grade point average of 3.0 is required. On occasion, where other credentials are exceptionally strong, a GPA in the 2.5-3.0 range may be accepted.

What is a Graduate Certificate?

An academic graduate certificate declares that a student has satisfactorily completed a sequence of advanced academic courses that provide instruction in a stand-alone, coherent body of specialized knowledge. It is designed to meet requirements for professional competence, expand access to specialized knowledge, or meet occupational needs for advanced interdisciplinary work.

It consists of 12-24 quarter units (3-6 courses) and may be provided via Special Sessions (self-support) through Extended Education (see Executive Order 1099); it has a formal application process and a distinct matriculation.

AS Resolution AS-726-11 March 8, 2011

Graduate Certificate Specific Requirements

Admission to a graduate certificate program requires a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution with a major in a relevant field of study.
The applicant must provide an official transcript that verifies they achieved a GPA of 2.5 or greater from their bachelor's degree granting institution. A student may not be conditionally admitted to a graduate certificate program. Even if the graduate certificate courses are online, international students must still satisfy Cal Poly's English language requirements.
California State University Executive Order 1099 limits the number of units that can be taken while not matriculated in a certificate program to no more than 30%. Therefore, students should not take more than 4 units of a graduate certificate program while not matriculated.
A maximum of 4 units may be transferred from another university and applied towards a graduate certificate. These units may not be applied towards the student's bachelor degree.
A minimum GPA of 3.0 is required for successful completion of a graduate certificate program. Students may not elect to take courses required for the certificate as credit/no credit. A graduate certificate program must be completed within three years.
Students who are enrolled only in a graduate certificate program are exempt from the continuous enrollment requirement for graduate students.
There is no GWR requirement for a certificate program.