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A Transfer Students' Guide To Register For Your First Quarter At Cal Poly

Important Dates and Deadlines for Fall 2023 registration

All prospective and conditionally admitted transfer students (those who are admitted but have not received their transfer credit evaluations) should direct questions to

map of what to do, dates and content listed below the image

  • On going: Check TO-DO List and take care of any registration holds within Student Center. Read bi-weekly Admissions Newsletter.
  • May - June: Submit Official Transcripts. Submit any AP scores. Secure Housing: On campus housing app closes 5/1 and Off campus housing fill sup fast - look early.
  • July-August 10: Review registration information by fully reading this whole website and the links to your college page(s). Connect with Disability Resource Center to set up course accommodations.
  • Early August : You will receive an email from when your Degree Progress Report (DPR) and Degree Planner is available. This will show you how your classes transferred to Cal Poly. Schedule Builder becomes available to you in your My Cal Poly Portal, under Student Center. You can see what classes and times are available and create tentative schedules (up to 18 units) for Fall 2022.
  • August 9 and 10: Attend Virtual SLO Days (assigned by major) and connect with your college advisor(s).
  • August 11: Advising centers available by zoom and email for questions pertaining to registration.
  • OCOB Advising Drop-ins 9am - 3pm, 
  • CLA Advising Drop-ins 9am – 4pm, 
  • CAED Advising Drop-ins 10am – Noon & 1 - 3pm,  
  • BCSM Advising Drop-ins 10:00 – Noon,  
  • CAFES Advising Drop ins 10:00 am – 3:00 pm, 
  • CENG  Advising Drop-Ins 9 – 11am & Noon-4pm, 
  • August 14: REGISTER FOR CLASSES. See your Student Center for your registration time. 
  • August 16 - 18: Transfer students can still make changes to their schedule. Student Center closes at 8pm every Wednesday for maintenance.
  • August 18 - 21: Cal Poly registration system is closed these three dates. No students will be able to make any changes to their schedules.
  • August 21: Second round of registration (option to enroll in up to 22 units). Please see Student Center for your specific registration appointment.
  • August 26 - September 20: Open Enrollment. Continue to make necessary changes to your schedule and some reserved seats will open to all students.
  • September 21: First day of classes!
  • October 2: Add/drop deadline (learn what this entails here). Last day to change credit/no credit grading option (consult with an advisor).

How to Register for Classes

The registration process is different your first fall quarter than the rest of your future registration terms. The reason for this is that continuing students registered back in May and departments saved spots for transfer students. Transfer seats have been held for incoming transfers by departments. 

Though the overall process is the same, each college processes course substitutions and a few other smaller pieces differently so your college advising center has created specific transfer registration steps. Please click on your colleges name to learn about how to register as an incoming transfer:

For those in the College of Architecture and Environmental Design please read the following steps and you will be directed in step 5 to college specific information. 

Step 1: Understand how your units transferred to Cal Poly

Transfer credit will continue to be evaluated and processed by Cal Poly until registration on Aug 14th. When your transfer evaluation is complete, you will receive an email from the Office of the Registrar - Evaluations Unit. At that time, you will be able to view your transfer credit transcripts in PolyProfile, and how those classes apply towards your degree in your Degree Progress Report.

How to find your transfer credit:

  1. Access PolyProfile through your Cal Poly Portal under your Academics Tab.
  2. Click on the Higher Ed Credits Detail link located on the right side of the page.
  3. Under Additional Higher Education Credits Detail, you will find the transcripts we received from you. Please let us know if we are missing any.
  4. Below this column, you will find your transcripts and how your classes transferred over.

sample of how a Cuesta College economic class transferred to a course at Cal Poly

On the right side, you will find the courses you took and on the left side, you will see how they transferred over to Cal Poly.

After reviewing your courses, you can access your Degree Progress Report to view your overall degree requirements. You can then see what you have completed and what you still need to graduate.

Step 2: Understand Your Student Center and Degree Progress Report

The Student Center will:

  • Access your Degree Progress Report (DPR)
  • View registration holds
  • View financial aid information
  • View dates for registration
  • Verify your student schedule (enrolled classes)

Access Student Center by logging into your portal and clicking on it under "my apps".

If you have a hold on your account, you will not be able to register until it is taken care of. Holds are listed on the right hand side of the Student Center.

Degree Progress Report (DPR):

The Degree Progress Report (DPR) is a vital tool that should be ran at least once per quarter to track your progress to degree. The Evaluations Unit uses the Degree Progress Report to post your degree so it is important to make sure the courses you have and will be taking are fulfilling the requirements you expected in your DPR.

Explore the Degree Progress Guide to learn how to read your DPR


Step 3: Gather Your Curriculum Sheet and Flowchart

Curriculum Sheet

Displays all of your degree course requirements in a one page snapshot. Should always be used in conjunction with review of your Degree Progress Report (DPR).

add a note if you will be sending them a curriculum sheet before SLO days or want them to do something with their curriculum sheet before SLO Days


sample curriculum sheet showing where major courses, support courses, and GE courses are on the sheet

How to find a copy of your curriculum sheet:

Go to > Degree Flowcharts and Curriculum Sheets

You will learn which catalog you are on once you get an email that your transfer evaluation has been completed.


These flowcharts display one example of a path towards graduation in 4 years. All transfer students enter Cal Poly at different places in their curriculum. The 4 year flowchart can help transfer students clarify what is typically completed in the first two years and prioritize any of those unmet courses in their first year at Cal Poly. Junior transfers who check their Degree Progress and work with advisors regularly can graduate in two years.

A course that is stretched across 2 or more quarters just means that you can take that course during any one of those quarters. Just prepare to complete all necessary prerequisites.

How to find a copy of your flowchart:

Step 4: Review your Major’s Fall Course Recommendations

Your major has provided a list of courses they recommend for your fall registration. Seats have been saved for incoming transfers and will open up on registration day.

First, find your college:

Once you have your major’s list of course recommendations, go to Schedule Builder and get familiar with how to search for classes and build possible schedules. Don’t forget to check for prerequisites within the course descriptions.

Step 6: Start To Make A Schedule

Schedule Builder is the online scheduling tool that allows students to plan their schedules and enroll for the upcoming quarter. Student Center displays all courses available for the upcoming term, course descriptions, and prerequisites. It allows you to input your availability, and create and save potential schedules.

When searching for available courses in Schedule Builder, all students need to pay attention to PREREQUISITES and SECTION NOTES.

Important Note: Schedule Builder will pull in class options from Degree Planner. You are NOT already registered for these classes. You will register yourself in classes that may or may not be the same as what is in Degree Planner.

Three schedule builder tips we have learned:

  1. Filters don't actually filter until you try to build a schedule.
  2. Class Status filter: If you get this message red X error, one or more class were eliminated due to class status when you try to build a schedule, it probably means you are filtering for "open" classes green check mark next to open and that class is currently full. You can just remove that class and build a schedule without it. If you still want to look at the class and maybe get on the waitlist, then you need to uncheck "open".
  3. If you filter for both Area C GEs and Graduation Writing Requirement (GWR) classes it gives you BOTH C GEs and GWR course, NOT classes that fulfill both. Be careful. Read course descriptions to confirm GE credit or GWR credit.

Review Schedule Builder steps and screenshots to plan and enroll in classes.

Step 7: Register for Classes

Registration appointments:

  • 1st Round: allows students to enroll up to 16 units
  • 2nd Round: allow students to register above 16 units and up to 22 units (if they desire)
  • Open Enrollment occurs after the 2nd round concludes. All specific dates for each respective quarter can be found at the Registrar's website.

View Registration Demos

Although we hope that registration runs smoothly without any glitches, there is always the possibility that technology issues arise.

You should be prepared for potential issues with the system becoming overwhelmed with transfer registration and slowing down. If this happens, please know you are not alone and this is most likely occurring across the system. Here are some tips, should this occur:

  • Do not continuously refresh your screen right after you have selected enroll. Every time you click refresh, you may be placing yourself further down the wait list.
  • Only refresh your screen if the loading icon disappears or continuously runs after a full minute

circle loading icon- The Loading Icon will appear in the top right hand corner in PeopleSoft

So you ended up on a Waitlist...that's okay! We will review your next steps.

First, it is important to mention again that registration for new transfer students is very unusual. The process is different because you are registering after other continuing students. Although departments do their best to reserve seats for transfer students, sometimes you end up on a wait list. The two reasons you may have ended up on a waitlist are:

  1. There are no more open seats available in the course
  2. Another transfer student tried to enroll in the course, but since they have enrolled past 18 units or did not meet the course pre-requisites, the wait list system has been "turned on" and every student after them has been placed on the waitlist

If you are still on the waitlist after 1pm....

  • Remember those backup courses: We encouraged you to identify all courses you meet the pre-requisites for and write them down as back-up courses. Now use those options to continue to register or waitlist in any classes that you need. Remember you can waitlist for up to 16 units!
  • Check out other sections: You may be waitlisted in a section of a course, however a different section has available seats. Take a look at other sections and register for or waitlist those as well.
  • Review your suggested course list: Some courses require a permission number to enroll. If a permission number is needed, we have indicated this on your major's fall suggested course list.


For all future registration terms, you will be given a date/time for registration, which is listed on the right side of the Student Center. This date and time is based on your actual academic progress level (how many degree applicable units you have completed), which is found on your academic progress gauge in PolyProfile during week 4 of first fall quarter.

Incoming Transfer Registration FAQ

What do I have transfer credit in?

In early August (up until you attend SLO Days), you will receive an email from when your Degree Progress Report (DPR) and Degree Planner is available. This will show you how your classes transferred to Cal Poly. 

Please do not email evaluations about the status of your DPR. They are working hard and have promised to have them done before you register. 

When can I meet with an advisor?

The afternoon of SLO Days is dedicated to time with your college advising center. Additionally, the Friday after SLO Days before you register your advising center will be available via zoom drop-ins and email to get your questions answered.

Until you receive an email from (in early August up until you attend SLO Days) when your Degree Progress Report (DPR) and Degree Planner is available, your advisor is not able to meet with you. An accurate DPR is necessary in order to properly advise you. We know this can be hard to wait for but we promise there will be time to help get your questions answered before you register.

What should I take?

Your major has provided a list of courses they recommend for your fall registration. Seats have been saved for incoming transfers and will open up on registration day.

How many units should I enroll in for my first quarter at Cal Poly?

Your fall suggested course list will include a recommendation of how many units you should register for in fall quarter.

To be a fulltime student at Cal Poly you must be enrolled in 12 or more units.

To find your fall suggested course list click on the link for your college:

If I have transfer credit that did not count for a Cal Poly course what can I do?

You may petition for it to count toward your degree.

Please note: Advisors are also submitting petitions on your behalf if we have noticed that your credit did not fully articulate. You may receive a notice that a form was completed for you.

Check out the Transfer Center's FAQ website for answers to other commonly asked questions by incoming and current transfers. 

After You Register

Check out the Planning Calendars

It can be hard to keep track of all the dates! There are calendars for future enrollment and deadlines that are good to be aware of.

Learn about Cal Poly policies

It is important to know that academic policies you were familiar with at your previous campus will likely be different at Cal Poly.

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