Spring Semester classes - planning for extra "points" , will they count?

We attended the CalPoly SLO in person tour and admissions presentation. For the first year selection criteria they presented a table of CSU Semesters (minimum) and Cal Poly Semesters (maximum). I have 2 kids applying and now trying to plan for final changes to their spring semester class load. They each have 3 semesters of a visual / performing art classes but the Cal Poly max is 4 semesters.

If given the choice, would it benefit them to take an art class next semester to get closer to the max of 4 semesters? Are 2nd semester 12th grade courses counted towards this? High school counselor said no but it seems like a no brainer to get an additional class towards the max.

Daughter is applying to public health, son is applying to architecture…


Senior courses are considered for the rigor points in the MCA calculation but if they are still using these points in their application review, it is not known. The difference between 3 semesters of VPA vs. 4 semesters is 25 points in the overall MCA calculation. If your students are interested in taking another VPA, then it is worth their time. It could help and definitely not hurt.

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Thank you for that feedback and detail. At the in person admissions meeting and tour, this was the slide they honed in on.
Not sure why our counselor said it won’t really matter much to take an additional art class but it makes sense to do so even for just a few points as opposed to a study hall… she’s maxed at language, social science, lab, and elective and doesn’t want to take double math or a second english class.

If they are using the MCA point calculations then the extra semesters of Math, Science, Foreign Language and VPA adds more points to the MCA total. SLO has always recommended additional coursework over the CSU minimums and with going test optional, the majority of CSU’s are also placing higher importance on exceeding the a-g course minimums.

Thank you for sharing that slide. My son had been scheduled for an in person tour right before COVID hit. It was cancelled due to the lock down. We haven’t been able to find a time to come up in person since. It’s good to see they’re still talking about the stuff listed in the MCA calculations.

Their YouTube channel has the presentation that they did in person (and lots of resources). We got a lot from visiting in person. This slide was the first slide they showed and the AO spent a decent amount of time talking about it. Good luck.

Yes, I’ve been really impressed by how much they have posted on the Admissions YouTube channel. I’ve watched a few and shared them with my son, but haven’t seen nearly all the ones I want to.