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 Sophomore

Local Atmosphere: Best Decision Yet – Santa Barbara is a great get-away; it's beautiful, scenic, relaxing. I had doubts about studying and living here because of its party rep, but I couldn't have made a better decision. It's amazing. We bike out every weekend to downtown, chill in a picnic on the beach during finals week, catch a free flick at the theatre in Isla Vista. The local vibe is so wonderfully unique.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Junior

Local Atmosphere: It's Happening – UCSB is the place to be. There is no other school surrounded by the ocean. It's a perfect location if you like to surf and also enjoy the sand and the beach. Isla Vista is a small within walking distance to the school and it's a place to relax and party after a hard day of work/school. UCSB has plenty of activities for all sorts of interests. This is also the best school to get around in a bike and skateboard.

5 College Sophomore

Majors: Awesome TA's – The teacher's assistants that I have had so far have all gone past the limit to ensure that we pass the class. They hold extra office hours, study sessions, online assistance, and they are always there for an appointment.

4 College Sophomore

Academics: Teachers Recommend Other Teachers – I'm in the College of Letters and Sciences and I love the staff. Whenever I talk to the professors about my goals they recommend other classes that I should take that would benefit my goal.

5 College Sophomore

Local Atmosphere: Surrounded by Water – Santa Barbara is a beautiful place, people who are friendly, and the beach is right next to you. Twenty minutes away is a beautiful outdoor shopping center that has a store for everyone. Head to Isla vista and eat an amazingly delicious buritto at Freebirds.

5 College Sophomore

Transportation: most people here walk or bike and the bus is free. Having a car is not necessary but its nice if want to go far places. Parking is not that great and permits are expensive

5 College Sophomore

Campus Strictness: Time Management – Students know how to manage their time wisely to have a social life but do good in their grades

4 College Sophomore

Campus Housing: living on campus is very expensive but its a great experience

3 College Sophomore

Greek Life: More School Involvement – The Greek system is great at our school, but they do not do a great job of getting themselves involved in the school. I think that if they get more involved in school and less with parties they would do better.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Sophomore

Guys & Girls: Could Use Work – For the most part we are a very diverse school. You will get to see all kinds of people and everyone gets along, especially because mostly everyone goes and parties.

1 person found this useful Report
2 College Sophomore

Campus Dining: Not the Best Not the Worst – The food is okay for a few weeks but then becomes very repetitive really fast. The weekend brunches and dinners are the worst, but for the most part its ok. Lunch is the best out of all other times.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Sophomore

Facilities: Love the Library – The Library is an awesome place to study. The only thing is that during midterms and finals week it is hard to find spots to study in, but other than that I use it all the time.

3 College Sophomore

Health & Safety: Safety and Security – The campus offers Campus Student Officers that regulate student misbehavior. There is also always patrols in Isla Vista, which is right next to campus, that regulates the partying and any law breakers. I haven't had a problem with insecurity walking alone on campus.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Sophomore

Local Atmosphere: Area Attractions – Isla Vista is an attraction for residents and other people living elsewhere. It is a beautiful town that offers a beach, sunset views, and entertainment, whether it is partying, comedy shows, free movies, etc. It is overall amazing.

5 College Sophomore

Facilities: The Most Amazing People – I don't know whether it's living so close to one another, or the awesome cool vibes given off by the ocean, but the people at UCSB are some of the most amazing people you will ever meet. There are always people willing to lend a helpful hand. I know this from personal experience. One day, while racing to class, my chain fell off my bike. I tried to fix it myself, but was having difficulty. One student saw me and offered his help. He even showed me a trick to help make it easier for me if it ever happened again. Thanks to him I got my bike fixed and was still on time for lecture. It is little things like this that make Santa Barbara so awesome. A day rarely goes by where a stranger doesn't pass by without at least offering a smile.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Sophomore

Overall Experience: Only a Sophomore – As a freshman I absolutely loved everything about my school. It was a completely new experience from what I had in high school. Living in the dorms I was able to meet many new wonderful people. Everything interesting to do was within walking distance or a short bus ride from campus. What most impressed me was the view of the ocean I had from my dorm room. UCSB stands on a cliff right off the ocean. Some of the best running paths line the coast, encouraging students to get out and be active. Many students live right off campus in Isla Vista. This is what makes UCSB so amazing. The whole student population is within one square mile. It makes for a wonderful community. There are signs everywhere with sayings such as "Love Thy Neighbor". It really is a wonderful place and I'm looking forward to living in an apartment there next year with some of my close girlfriends.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Academics: Striving Students – By attending a university that runs on the quarter system, students are pushed to always be on top of their work. The classes consist of 10 weeks of grueling coursework, but this keeps students interested and working hard. I cannot imagine being on a semester system where I'd be bored half way through the class. The professors push their students to stay on top of their studies, and I feel it makes us better students.

1 person found this useful Report
2 College Freshman

Diversity: It has always been said that there is a lot of diversity at universities and its true. But as far as it being an equal amount of every race isn't exactly true. The majority of the students there are all Caucasian and very few asians with even less hispanics.

3 College Freshman

Computers: Outdated Technology – The computers at USCB are always avaliable so that's the best part. But infortunately these computers aren't the best ones or the most up-to-date in technology. So due to this minor flaw, it presents a little difficulty when trying to use any of these computers.

1 person found this useful Report
2 College Senior

Parking: Campus police are very mean, gave me a ticket when I was sitting in my car waiting for my sister.

4 College Senior

Greek Life: All the greek houses in Isla Vista have really loud and crazy parties. It is not unusual to see cops arresting people and making surprise visits.

5 College Senior

Athletics: School Spirit Runs Throughout the School – The basketball team does very well during the year. All my friends dress up in blue and gold with painted faces to represent their school at the games, both home and away games.

3 College Sophomore

Weather: I think most days are around 70 degrees. Usually the sun is out but there is always an ocean breeze. Sometimes it bothers me though because the sun will be out and the day will look nice, but then you go outside and it is really windy and cold.

2 College Sophomore

Off-Campus Housing: Housing Pros and Cons – There are so many close apartments and houses available for rent close to campus, but a lot of them are not affordable for me. I subleased from some friends in the summer and their landlord did not care about their complaints at all (mice, broken sliding doors and windows). The community of Isla Vista is also sort of scary to me because of occasional violence related to parties and all of the noise. There are some options of some nicer apartments owned by the university.

2 people found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Academics: I have still not declared but I am currently working on the prerequisites for the Sociology major. The professors I know and the advisors all seem to really care about students and are some of the more caring on campus.


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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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