College of Liberal Arts Advising Center Office


Location: Building 47, Room 22B
Phone: (805) 756-6200
Hours: 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 noon; 1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. - Closed for lunch from 12:00 p.m.- 1:00 p.m.

How to Make an Appointment

  • To make an appointment please come in during our regular office hours or call the Advising Center office at (805) 756-6200.
  • Be prepared to state your reasons for the appointment and provide a phone number you can be contacted at (all information is confidential). This is so we can review your file and prepare your paperwork.

Faculty Advisors

The Department of Political Science wants to work with you to ensure a rewarding and stimulating educational experience. This page is your guide to assorted advice and other information that will help you to have the best experience possible at Cal Poly.

Curriculum and Requirements

It is important that you understand the requirements to graduate with a Political Science degree. Please familiarize yourself with these requirements. A good place to start is the curriculum page. In addition, other useful sources of advising information are the Political Science Academic Advisors page, and the College of Liberal Arts Advising homepage.

As a Political Science major, you may want to consider pursuing supplementary academic studies to enhance the Political Science curriculum. Some majors opt to minor in another discipline and/or attain fluency in a second language. Within the department, we encourage you to "learn by doing" by registering for one of our many internships. Another way to complement your educational experience is through club participation. Consider getting involved in a club, such as the Model United Nations, Undergraduate Law Association, Mock Trial Team, Political Science Club, and Pi Sigma Alpha.

New students

As a first year student, we recommend choosing 12 to 16 units in the first term. You are required to take POLS 180 in the Fall quarter of your first year; the course is offered only in the Fall quarter. In addition, plan to take 200 level courses in the Political Science core. Some suggested courses are listed below. All majors should plan to take one to two Political Science courses each quarter. Remedial Math and English courses must be completed in the first year. Be particularly careful NOT to select general education courses for which you have received advanced placement credit.

Suggested Courses (Units)

Courses in the Major

  • POLS 112 American and California Government (4)*
  • POLS 180 Political Inquiry (4)
  • POLS 225 Introduction to International Relations (4)
  • POLS 229 Introduction to Comparative Politics (4)
  • POLS 230 Basic Concepts of Political Thought (4)

​Support Courses/General Education

Take One of the Following Support Courses

  • HIST 110 (4) or HIST 111 (5)
  • ENGL 134 (4)**
  • COMS 101/102 (4)***
  • ANT 201/GEOG 150/HIST 222/HIST 223 (4)*

* Also fulfills GE. Check AP credit prior to enrolling
May be taken Winter or Spring Quarters if you have difficulty in registering for Area A courses
*** If you have Advanced Placement Credit for ENGL 134

Political Science has a suggested sequence of courses for majors. Use the sequence that pertains to you: 2015-17 flowchart (PDF).

Students entering in Fall may find the annual Student Orientation and Advising Resources of benefit. This one-day program takes place in mid-July to assist students in planning a fall schedule.

For more information, see Cal Poly Admissions website, in particular its Transfer Student and Newly Admitted pages.

Tentative Course Schedule

To help you plan which courses to take and when to take them, we provide a list of classes that we tentatively plan to offer in the coming academic year.

Political Science Department Academic Integrity Policy

The Political Science Department has an academic integrity policy that applies in addition to university academic integrity policies. It is the obligation of students to be familiar with and abide by this policy. Details of the Department's policy.

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