Santa Barbara, CA
Tuition (in-state)
$36,549 ($13,671)
Admission Difficulty
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Reviews 3060 total reviews with an average rating of 3.7

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5 College Junior

Nightlife: Insane, Awesome, Fun – The nightlife is amazing. Isla Vista is the small college town next to UCSB and it is one square mile full of 20,000 UCSB students. That is asking for a good time. Every weekend there are parties everywhere and you can pretty much get into any house you want to get into. If you are not a fan of drinking, though, there are alternative options such as movies, game nights, the beach, concerts, night hikes and tons of people who just chill and have small kick backs with their friends. There are once again a ton of options no matter what you like to do there are people to hang out with who have the same interests. Whether you want to rage or just hang out, you can do both!

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Junior

Diversity: Acceptance Is Alive – UCSB is extremely diverse in several different ways. Racially it is not as diverse as other campuses, however it is extremely diverse in terms of religion, socioeconomic status, beliefs, opinions, interests, ethnic identity and political views. There are over 400 clubs on campus and numerous ones focus on issues surrounding diversity and support for our various campus communities. The campus is very supportive of one another, social, accepting, and liberal and everyone can find a place for them. There are moments of rude comments and even times acts of hate but the campus comes together to stand up against it. For example there will be walks or posters or an event that counters the act of hate against certain communities. The campus is extremely accepting and everyone can find someone they can relate to.

5 College Student

Health & Safety: Very Safe – I have never felt unsafe at UCSB. It;s a large, beautiful, safe and friendly campus with a welcoming environment. There's theirs and thugs everywhere but UCSB does an amazing job keeping everything safe.

3 College Junior

Majors: Communication Major – It's sort of annoying that I've completed a year and a half of transferable college level Communication work and still have to take another year of Pre-major work before I can officially be declared.

4 College Junior

Weather: The SB weather, while currently unpredictable is breathtaking.

4 College Junior

Facilities: Recreation Center – The Rec Cen has everything you could possibly want! They have swimming pools, rock climbing walls, and a roller hockey rink on top of your typical gym equipment. The staff there is also incredibly friendly.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Drug Safety: Drinking and Smoking Rule the Night – Guaranteed underage drinking at parties. The main habit that individuals love is absolutely drinking and smoking (mainly marijuana).

5 College Sophomore

Nightlife: If you are looking for a place to party, hang out, catch a local band, dance the night away... what better place than this schools social night life. Guaranteed to have the time of your life.

1 person found this useful Report
2 College Sophomore

Athletics: Sports Are Completely One-Sided – The only main excitement out of the althetic teams hear are with Soccer. Soccer is the foundation to UCSB athletics, and every other sport/team falls far behind.

2 people found this useful Report
Recent Alumnus

Scholarships: Since, I have not had the honor to be privileged to earn any scholarships from the University of California - Santa Barbara, I cannot provide much of a description of how thankful the scholarship receiptants felt in receiving such amazing educational aid. I cannot state my thoughts about earning any scholarships from the University of California - Santa Barbara, since I have not had the experience for the opportunity. I learn from my experiences, but also I learn from the experiences of others. I do know many smart individuals who received many scholarships in exchange of credit for their excellent performance as students in highly competitive and well-respected schools. They were always so grateful to have earned financial assistance, because which super-broke college student would not benefit from any sort of financial assistance?

5 Recent Alumnus

Campus Strictness: The University of California - Santa Barbara campus strictly enforces rules for all students to abide and expects each student as a young adult to be responsible and learn to commit to follow the campus oath. Yes, the University of California - Santa Barbara enforces strict rules, but also if a student breaks any rule, but when confronted is truthful about their actions, then the courage to grow and be truthful is respected by the authorized individual who is disciplining this student for such actions. Respect is given, only when it is truly earned. I feel the strictness of University of California - Santa Barbara is fair, in order to maintain a healthy and safe work environment.

3 College Freshman

Computers: Since the internet inside dorms is quite slow at times, students generally go to the libraries to work on school stuff. Since printers can be found there, students have the access to print there, making it not necessary for them to take their own printer.

4 College Senior

Transportation: Biking Is the Norm – The entire campus, as well as markets and restaurants, can be reached through the popular mode of transportation, biking. Not only is biking cost efficient and eco-friendly, but also appropriate for an active lifestyle. While biking works for going to school and a job nearby, having a friend who has a car has many advantages too when it's hot and hiking to a waterfall sounds like a great plan.

2 people found this useful Report
4 College Senior

Diversity: Friends of Many – The campus community is very diverse and for that reason, there are countless groups and organizations representing the differences as well as the similarities that unite the students.

4 College Senior

Local Atmosphere: Festivities Indoors and Outdoors – While the neighboring city to campus is a community of mainly college students, the location provides for more than just local parties and school functions. The downtown area of Santa Barbara offers many enriching and lively environments such as wineries, bars, lounges, restaurants, clubs and a shopping center. In addition, the mountains near Santa Barbara have exciting hiking trails, waterfalls and even a hidden tavern that hosts live bands in an intimate and vibrant setting. There are a lot of exciting and interesting activities and places to be found near the university.

1 person found this useful Report
1 College Sophomore

Athletics: This school has very little school spirit. While it's united, it's not through school sports or campus activities. The lack of football team is NOT replaced by the soccer team.

2 people found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Guys & Girls: Typical Southern California – The guys and girls here are what you would expect in a beachy town in Southern California. Hot, into partying, and pretty stuck-up. Not everyone is like this, but a majority of people are. Everyone is super laid back and chill too.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Sophomore

Academics: UC System Getting Worse – Classes are hard to get due to budget cuts. Class sizes are huge as well. But if you make an effort you can get to know your professors. Most seem to want to meet their students and all give out office hours for students who need help.

3 College Sophomore

Transportation: Having a Car Helps – If you're fine with taking the bus, then you can get around places without a problem. In your tuition you pay for quarterly bus passes so everyone can ride the bus. Having a car does make things easier, but if you venture out you can find other ways to get around. Bikes are what most people use to get to campus for class and into IV where most people live.

2 people found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Drug Safety: If You Want It, You Can Find It – Isla Vista is as crazy as people think. If you are looking for crazy parties or people to smoke with, then look no further than Del Playa. It is easy to get a hold of drugs, alcohol, and people who will drink and get high with you.

3 College Sophomore

Local Atmosphere: Sleepy City, Crazy Town – Santa Barbara is a beautiful place, but lacks affordable options for college students. There are hundreds of shops and attractions, but the cost of everything is much higher than the average college student can afford. The best thing to do is to go to the beach because it's usually sunny and free! Isla Vista is the main source of entertainment for students. As long as your not paying for the drinks at the parties, it's free entertainment.

2 people found this useful Report
4 College Junior

Local Atmosphere: Friendly Neighborhood – Isla Vista is beautiful, located on the beach, very small so easy to get around and you get to know more people, and you are very close to campus no matter where you are. The houses are average in quality but you are paying for the beach front property so it is hard to complain. There are always tons of activities and people playing ball on the streets. Great atmosphere.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Sophomore

Nightlife: Students here at Santa Barbara have a great time. There's house parties every weekend but when there's midterms parties seem to settle down but you always have a great time in Santa Barbara. Also you don't need transportation because everything is walking distance.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Athletics: The School Spirit Is Awesome! Our is school has alot of fan support and the school spirit is great. The soccer games are great and the soccer team is one of the best in their league.

4 College Sophomore

Computers: Labs Are Very Accessible – The computer labs at Santa Barbara are great. Also you have access to computers in the library and the internet is fast. You could also print at the the library and at the computer labs so is very convenient.


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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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