Santa Barbara, CA
Tuition (in-state)
$36,549 ($13,671)
Admission Difficulty
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Reviews 3069 total reviews with an average rating of 3.7

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4 College Junior

Facilities: Great Activities – At UCSB there is always something to do. Doesn't matter if you're outgoing or a loner, there are events for all types of people. The Associated Students Program Board facilitates all school-funded events and ensures there is an enormous variety of events so any and all interests are satisfied.

4 College Junior

Parking: It's Great! I love education and I love having fun and there is no better school than UCSB for that. They rank 7 in the world in science and mathematics while being on the top 10 for party schools as well.
Great thing I love about my school is the close proximity of the beach from the school.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Sophomore

Local Atmosphere: Beach is really the only activity you can get to. The college town has no real activities and unless you havea car, you can't get anywhere. The school holds various activities but they are intended for certain majors and not really social activities of any sort.

2 College Sophomore

Off-Campus Housing: Loud and filled with intoxicated students. Difficult to stay away from it

4 College Sophomore

Academics: Office Hours – Go to office hours! They are so helpful! And the professors here are genuinely invested in their students!

3 College Sophomore

Diversity: Beach School – UCSB is a dominantly "white" campus, however there are definitely a huge diversity that can be found. Although it is dominated by one ethnicity, it does not feel segregated at all. UCSB is a very integrated campus but it also offers minorities a chance to gather together and share interests through clubs or a multi-cultural or ethnic-based fraternity/sorority.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Drug Safety: The small college town of Isla Vista (located right outside of campus) is a big party town. It's filled with students from SBCC and UCSB, and at the average age of about 21, there are a lot of parties going around. Not only is it a college town, but it's where all the Greek houses are.

3 College Sophomore

Computers: Computer Labs – It's great that we get free printing at certain computer labs.

The library has some a large computer area spread throughout the first floor that are easily accessible to people. Monitors are pretty new and look well taken care of.

4 College Sophomore

Campus Housing: First-Year Dormlife – You make great friends in your hall and find that those hallmates are also a good source of help when it comes to school work. It's is an overall great experience.

4 College Sophomore

Nightlife: Parties are never hard to find and are all within walking distance.

5 College Junior

Campus Housing: Amazing Transfer Process – UCSB set up a Facebook page for incoming transfer females so we could find prospective roommates before the quarter started. Once you found people you wished to room with they open the choosing process early and let you and your roommates choose which apartment you want to live in. If for some chance you booked the wrong apartment or want a new roommate, the housing department is so helpful and usually can fix it during the span of your phone call. They were extremely helpful and friendly.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Junior

Health & Safety: Pretty Safe – I usually feel safe on campus, but there are some dimly lit areas that I avoid at night. The reason USCB doesn't get the stellar grade is because of bike theft. My friend has gotten his bike stolen from the rack twice and both never were recovered. Also, there were some break ins into dorm rooms during the summer, so there are some shady areas, just make sure you're always aware of your surroundings.

1 person found this useful Report
2 College Senior

Parking: Its Always a Gamble – As a freshman, if you bring your car your only option is to pay for a parking permit every quarter which could be around $300 a quarter. Even if you do agree to it, the problem is that you can only park in convenient spot (near your dorm) on weekends. During the week, expect to have to bike to that parking lot or take a fun 30 minute walk there. This isn't a problem only for those who choose to dorm at Santa Catalina which is the furthest dorm from campus (its actually the only dorm not on campus but also enjoys the most night life). Once you move out of the dorms and into apartments, your situation improves a lot more. If you're lucky and you get an apartment that already comes with free parking, they only grant your apartment one parking spot. Others charge per quarter and if not, you could always park on the street but finding a spot on a weekend night is never guaranteed.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Senior

Majors: Extremely Happy – I am very content with my program. Every quarter I have the opportunity to take mentally stimulating classes on the topics I love. If I could do it again, I would have also picked up a double major in Global and international studies as it would have complimented the discipline of anthropology. I want to get my PhD in anthropology but my only concern is finding the funding.

4 College Senior

Majors: Engaging Professors – I feel that the strengths of the school is that they provide so many classes on Anthropology and what immediately attracted me to UCSB for my particular major was that it was one of the only schools that asked me to list what TYPE of anthropology I wanted to study. I was able to list, "Cultural Emphasis" which is my passion and the classes and professors definitely deliver when it comes to educating on those interests.

4 College Senior

Majors: Very Easy – It was extremely easy. Although high school counselors typically advise students on applying to schools as Undeclared, I got admitted to UCSB even having enrolled under Anthropology.

4 College Senior

Majors: A Look Inside – I worked in the anthropology lab sorting through excavated materials. I did this as an internship therefore it was not paid however I did receive units. They worked around my class schedule and I needed to complete six hours a week. I sorted through the materials gathered at excavation sites (the Channel Islands) and compiled the same materials into different bags, labeled them and then catalogued them, listing their strata, site, weight, count etc. I believe this experience has provided me with the experience that will qualify me for jobs in my major like working at museums.

4 College Senior

Computers: Technically Challenged – You need a laptop. It is more convenient especially during finals week. Printing is also a hassle during this time. The labs and library are typically reliable and speedy, but I strongly suggest getting your own device.

4 College Senior

Weather: Always Carry a Sweater – It is deceptively nice here. Prepare for clouds in the Fall, Wind in the Winter, Rain and Fog in the Spring and pretty warm sunny days in June.

5 College Senior

Local Atmosphere: Do Everything – Movies, shopping, relaxing on the beach, driving to nearby tourist locations such as Solvang. Lots of athletic and leisure activities also. Literally everything is right here.

4 College Senior

Guys & Girls: The Best – A great mix of masculine, feminine and the in between. Social, smart, friendly.

4 College Senior

Scholarships: Getting You Through – These Scholarships really helped out the first two years because the Cal Grant and Pell Grants were still so low.

4 College Student

Computers: Printing on Campus – There are many labs on campus, most charge 11cents a page, but if you're a transfer student with certain majors (like in College of Letters and Sciences) you get 100 free prints every quarter in specific labs!

4 College Student

Guys & Girls: I Don't Have Much Experience. I just started attending UCSB a few weeks ago so I am still trying to put myself out there. UCSB is just like any other school, I imagine, you have your stuck-up people and then you have those really outgoing friendly people. I have met both already, but YOU have to be comfortable talking to people or it's going to be difficult making friends. I am struggling with that right now. So far, the ones I have made friends are attractive, supportive, fun, and outgoing.

4 College Student

Transportation: The bus systems at UCSB are very helpful, they are of no cost to students if they get a bus sticker on their ID card, and they go from the school to downtown Santa Barbara. Some of them go by stops every half hour and the rest go by every hour so it's very convenient to do shopping or just having fun around town with no cost to you as a student!


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Kohn Hall
Kohn Hall
Kohn Hall Kohn Hall Houses the Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics

Overall ExperienceWhat's This?

Louie Tamayo
Long Beach
Sociology, Education and Applied Psychology
Grad Year
View all previous student authors

Ask practically any UCSB student, and he or she can give you a long list of things they love about the University, along with a few things they wish they could change. For the most part, UCSB is a college student’s haven with great academics, world-renowned professors, not to mention the great weather and laid-back atmosphere, and lastly who can forget the social scene? Some students describe Santa Barbara as paradise, but for those who quickly get over it and need a getaway, LA is a short one-hour drive south, while San Francisco is only four hours north. There are hidden treasures in Santa Barbara that you can explore and take advantage of while living there.

Do not let the weather and social scene cloud your judgment and decisions—take a deeper look at the school and ask the students. Chances are, the parties are not at the top of their list. Most students fall in love with their internships, clubs and organizations, and research work that prepare them for the real world. The most successful students are those who find a balance between academics and social life. The temptation to blow off school is present wherever you go, so the students pay extra attention to the work they produce. Overall, UCSB is the type of school that produces people that employers are seeking. You will find your fellow peers to be sociable and well-rounded in and out of the workplace. So although you may not get to experience game days like you would at a football school, there is nothing better than being able to catch a quick "surf sesh" before and after your class.

Admitted Students' GPA/Test Scores More on admissions . . .

Applicant Status At University of California - Santa Barbara

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