Study in University of California Santa Barbara 9

My name is Lukas and I studied a quarter at UCSB.
To anticipate: I can only recommend everyone to study a quarter / semester at UCSB.
With my experience report, I will go into a few points that might help you.

Before departure:

The best thing to do is to organize your semester abroad as early as possible. UCSB is extremely popular and the number of free places is limited.
The MicroEDU team is available to answer any questions you may have and will answer them very quickly. At this point I have to express my praise again:-)

If you have been accepted for the UCSB, I would recommend that you arrive 2 weeks before the start of the semester. This gives you enough time to look for an apartment and, if everything goes well, even to travel before the start of the semester. Read more student reviews on Liuxers.

At least for the first week I would rent a car. So you can quickly get to the potential apartments, do the necessary errands for the facility, etc.
I would book the rental car in Germany, as this is usually a bit cheaper in advance. In addition, you can get into the car immediately at your arrival airport and save the money for taxi / bus. Especially when you arrive in LA, it’s worth it.

As accommodation for the first few days, I recommend Motel 6 in Goleta. It’s cheap, well-equipped, and most importantly, near Isla Vista (the student area next to / on campus).
Downtown Santa Barbara is 15-20 minutes away from Isla Vista / campus. This saves you the annoying driving.
This can also be booked from Germany. (Did this for the first 4 days)

  • Get an American cell phone as soon as possible. (available in the AT&T shop)
  • Start looking for an apartment immediately.
    • The easiest way to do this is via the “craigslist”. Various offers can be found there. Just call and drive by. It’s best to take a look around this page before you arrive in the USA.
    • Find an apartment in IslaVista. Preferably an apartment / house with Americans. This is how you experience real college life. (Downtown is MUCH too far away from the action in my opinion.)


  • UCSB has an indescribably beautiful campus. Make full use of the extensive offers:-) Take the time to explore the campus right at the beginning! Otherwise you might get annoyed that you saw beautiful corners too late.
  • If you are into sports, register at the Recreation Center. This costs $ 60 for a quarter. If you look at the offer, it’s free:-) There are 2 fitness halls (with all the equipment you need.), A basketball and badminton hall, a climbing wall, tennis and squash fields, 2 swimming pools and 1 jacuzzi.

There is also an artificial turf pitch that can be used without membership.

  • In the library there is a “study room” with an “ocean view” on the top floor. It is a wonderful panorama picture. We recommend!


  • There is a wide range of courses. At the information events, one is a little afraid that it will be quite difficult to get into courses as the permanently enrolled students have priority. In my experience, however, you can actually get into the courses without any problems if you talk to the professors.
  • For business students, I can recommend the Corporate Finance course with Mr. Robert C. Lowes. It was the best course I have ever attended in my “university life”. He was formerly CFO / CEO at various companies and orientates his lessons exclusively on practice. A lot is asked, but it is worth it.
  • In general, it can be said that the courses are smaller than in Germany and there is much more interaction between professor and student. You could compare it to seminars with us. There is also homework and intermediate exams. So there is actually always something to do, but this is limited. You still have enough free time;)

In addition, this eliminates the great stress of exams that we always have with us.


  • As already mentioned, the Recreation Center offers the opportunity to do a lot of sport. You get to know a lot of people, especially at the beginning. (eg in football) Since the Americans are generally very open and sociable, invitations for the various house parties that take place in IV arise immediately.
  • On Thursdays Bill’s bus goes downtown. There you can party in the various bars / clubs and you will also be brought back to Isla Vista.
  • There are many Germans at UCSB. Even if it is easier to team up with the same in the beginning, I would recommend establishing contact with the Americans as much as possible. This is the only way to really get to know the country and the culture.
  • A wine tasting in Santa Ynez is a little insider tip.
  • A hike in the mountains followed by a sunset is also highly recommended.


This is the only “negative” point. A quarter at UCSB is very expensive. In addition to the tuition fees, a rent of around $ 700 must be expected. IslaVista rental prices are extremely expensive. A single room is usually priceless.
In addition, money should be planned for trips and trips. The many national parks in California, Utah, etc. are worth exploring.

Eating & drinking is not much more expensive than with us, provided you are willing to cook yourself. Fruit / vegetables are more expensive, while drinks and meat are cheaper.


The time at UCSB was an unforgettable experience. I would love to go back immediately:-)

Study in University of California Santa Barbara 9