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Schools Physics at the University of California

  1. Nov 23, 2009 #1
    Hello all,
    I am about to apply to the UC system for exchange. I will have to choose 3 campuses to apply. Berkeley is out of question, if I will be eligible to apply, it will definitely be my 1st choice. But I am undecided about other 3 (or 2) alternatives.

    Is there anybody here that has any idea about other 9 UC campuses? UCLA seems like an expensive alternative at the moment, so I crossed it out.

    San Diego and Santa Barbara seem alright, but I was told life is way too expensive in Santa Barbara. Is it so? Feel free to write me about ANY other UC campuses (Irvine, Davis, any of them)

    And I also another different question, I will not be very hard for me to supply 16k, but it will definitely cost considerable sacrifice. It seems like to me that this is like a once in a lifetime opportunity. Do you it is really worth it to spend 16k to get a one year education at UC? (It won't to a piece of cake to supply that much for me.)

    I am also curious whether professors at UC would be willing to give an exchange student a research opportunity. Do you know anything about it?

    Any information will be greatly appreciated.
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2009
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 23, 2009 #2
    apply to all of them except riverside and merced.
  4. Nov 23, 2009 #3
    thanks, i have questions for you if you are from one of UC's or know about them.
  5. Nov 23, 2009 #4
    As fare as I know, they all charge the same tuition. Cost of living is pretty high in all the areas with a UC Campus except UC Merced (which is just starting-up). After that, UC Davis probably has the lowest cost-of-living (it is in a suburb out in the boondocks between the Bay Area and Sacramento).

    Southern California is cheaper than the Bay Area, except for San Diego which is almost as pricey. For the Southern California Schools, the farther out in the Suburbs (which the exception of UC Irvine, which is in orange county), the cheaper the cost of living is.

    Berkeley is the best public university in the United States, and UCLA is right behind it. One problem though is that the California budget crises has left our entire higher education system, from the Junior Colleges up to the top-notch campuses like UCSF and UC Berkeley in free-fall. Now might not be the best time to study at a public university in California, and you might want to check out tuition rates for similar programs at private schools like Stanford, CIT, USC, et cetera.
  6. Nov 23, 2009 #5

    Unfortunately I can only apply to the UC system for exchange and others are not an option. I do not know a lot about the geography of California, but it is clear for me that you say Davis is cheaper and Irvine is expensive. What about Santa Barbara? and also, Is UCLA really the most expensive UC to study at? (I do not mean the tuition, I won't be paying it. Life costs are my point. (e.g. eating, etc)) And also, by pricey, what do you exactly mean? Let's say in Irvine how much would it cost me to eat? In dinner halls, etc or would i have to cook by myself? How does a standard student at Davis fulfill his eating need? I know I ask a lot, but I am practically out of sources to learn about these stuff.
  7. Nov 23, 2009 #6
    Care to explain why?

    To original poster, you should do some homework on the classes offered at each university, maybe call or e-mail someone at each of the universities about how well transfer students generally do in the physics deparment- especially if you are international, how well prepared their graduates are for graduate school, the costs etc. In the end this will help you make an informed decision rather than blindly following the advice from someone who thinks he is funny by spelling boner backwards as his username.
  8. Nov 23, 2009 #7
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 24, 2017
  9. Nov 23, 2009 #8
    I am not absolutely certain, but UCLA (which is in the LA suburb of Santa Monica) and UCSD are probably just a tad cheaper than Berkeley. Irvine is in Orange County, so if it is cheaper than UCLA, it is not by much. Santa Cruz is a bit cheaper, but the number of people who live there and commute to Silicon Valley have driven the prices up pretty high. Riverside is probably cheaper than all of them, but still not cheap. My guess is after Merced, Davis is going to be the cheapest.

    Also, if you stay in school-provided residences and eat at their dining halls, it is probably all going to be about the equivalent, but in terms of transportation, rent, food, et cetera outside of the University, it does make a difference. Also, you have to consider things such as, going to Berkeley, you could get around pretty easily on public transit. Southern California public transit is not so good, and if you go to Davis or Merced, good luck getting around off-campus without a car (or a friend with a car).

    So if you can live on campus, you are probably looking at about equal costs, but if you are living off-campus, you should consider things such as housing and transportation.
  10. Nov 23, 2009 #9
    UCLA CHEAP???? ha

    I visited this summer and either on campus or off campus housing is insanely expensive (median home price is around $4 million just to give you an idea)..... its in the middle of Beverly hills

    Room and board for undergrads is $14,000....
  11. Nov 23, 2009 #10
    However, as far as I understood, UC system wants me to have as much as $20k if I want to apply to UCLA. It is around 16k for other campuses. You said you would shy away, but my point is, I will probably be there for only 2 semesters (not even a complete year) and it seems like to me getting that experience (both academic and cultural) in probably in one of these campuses (LA, SD and Berkeley especially) would really contribute to me. I do not live in the U.S. at the moment and the college I study is not even top 200 worldwide although I think it has a strong faculty. So it seems like a great opportunity.

    Thanks for your caring message a lot.. You have no idea how much they are useful.
  12. Nov 23, 2009 #11
    I plan to send emails to them, but what do you mean by homework? If I get accepted, I will be spending my junior year there.
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