University of California - Los Angeles Reviews
Student & Graduate Reviews (83)
UCLA is a city unto itself, with a very diverse student body. The school is in the heart of the entertainment field, so there are many opportunities to network and gain knowledge from people in the field. Academics are challenging, and social life is active. And living in Southern California is great.
University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) Overview: UCLA is a large public, research school set in Westwood, California. The campus is a hybrid of traditional old-time, brick buildings and modern, state of the art facilities. Rolling hills and stairs are the architectural theme. “Always happening” captures the tempo of UCLA; from the newest movie premiere to innovative discoveries, there is always a jam-packed agenda here. Also, we’re fun: Myth tour instead of the regular campus tour, anyone? And, do not forget our West Coast weather: perpetual comfortable weather! Academics: In my personal opinion, I do not think the classes taught at UCLA are better than other academic institutions. Of course, UCLA does have very exceptional lecturers. But for a bad class, it is possible to have a very smart professor who is not very experienced with explaining complex principles in simple terms to a large audience. The lectures at UCLA can be composed anywhere from 8 to 200 students. The more specialized the class, the less students there are. Along with lectures, most courses have discussion sections comprised of less than 30 students that are led by the teaching assistant. The professors and teaching assistants at UCLA are very accessible to students. In terms of signing up for classes, UCLA does have a fair system: Two-pass system. This system works in which students are given two scheduled times to sign up for classes based on their standing and extra-curricular activities. The first pass limits students to signing up for a maximum of 10 units, which allows everyone to lock into their first priority course for the quarter. Although it should be noted that the specific instructor that you might want may already be taken by your time – it really all depends on your luck of the draw. (Pro tip: Check out Bruinwalk.com to get UCLA student’s ratings of professors and courses before signing up! Beware biased opinions.) You can definitely graduate in four years if you plan your courses out and have a clear major choice by 2nd year. UCLA students are spoiled when it comes to study spots. There are ten libraries at UCLA and numerous study lounges scattered across the geography of UCLA. When studying becomes boring, it definitely helps to spice things up by sitting in a fun study pod at Young Research Library or swivel in your chair in Spanish-esque Hershey Hall’s computer lab. Each dorm floor boasts of a study lounge and halls such as Rieber can rent out 24/7 study rooms to students who book in advance. (Pro tip: At the ends of the Terasaki buildings, there are study chairs with a modern flair that are usually unoccupied.) When classes get tough, fellow Bruins are here to help out. Free tutoring services are offered by organizations such as Advanced Academic Placement and Tau Beta Pi. No big deal, but UCLA has a legal, school-run test bank. Yes, you read that correctly. When you turn in an old exam, you have a short amount of time to print out another old exam. Even better, your first quarter as a freshman, you have a free pass to the test bank and do not have to turn in an exam! Livability: UCLA is extremely beautiful and well kept. Wealthy Bel Air is just up north, and walking south is Westwood filled with all your necessities and entertainment. Westwood restaurants make up a diverse range of tastes to suite every palette. On Campus Housing Most underclassmen live on campus in the dorms on the west-side of UCLA. The dorms are well maintained and UCLA has been finishing newer dorms (Ex. Holly, Sproul Cove) the five years. The “classic” dorms would be a small room that can fit two bunk bed frames, two desks, and two in the wall closets for two or three students to share. One of the bunk beds will have a bed on top and desk below. (For reference: https://housing.ucla.edu/student-housing/freshman-students/living-on-campus/classic-residence-halls) The dorms do have TV cable service, wifi, and a laundry station. Bathrooms can be floor or room-based, depending on dorm type. Most students who live on campus also buy meal plans (Ex. 11 meals per week or 19 meals per week) which they can spend on at any of the four dining halls or food services. (In the morning, students can even opt to grab a healthy, packed lunch before heading off the campus for the entire day.) The food at UCLA is amazing! The menu is always rotating, and each dining hall has its own specialty menu (Ex. Asian or healthy), which is published days in advance with nutritional values. The portion sizes are also smaller than average, which helped me eat healthier. (Of course, you can get back in line to get more since it is buffet style at the dining halls!) Off Campus Housing Upperclassmen typically rent property in the surrounding area, which are about 20-30 commute away either by walking or shuttle bus. The rent is expensive (Ex. Single bed room apartment for $2,100 per month) compared to other areas. Although it can be hit or miss with the non-university owned apartments, I have seen one university-owned off campus apartment before and it was gorgeous. Two bedroom, two bath, small living room, and a full kitchen for four individuals. The place was clearly recently renovated and very well-kept. In terms of food, it depends on your cooking skills. A Ralphs is just south of UCLA in Westwood, which is still accessible to students who do not own cars. Crime UCLA has its own police station south of the campus. For late night walks, there are additional bus shifts during exam weeks and student-security escorts to keep you company on the trek home. The campus is almost always occupied, so you do not feel alone. The walk back to all on-campus buildings and dorms is very well-light and safe. If you live off campus, you may want more company if you are not used to walking back by yourself. To be clear, it is uncommon to hear of crimes at UCLA; although the university is not free of petty theft crimes. Fun stuff to do UCLA is a very social campus, and most organizations plan their own get-togethers. Even if you’re not part of a club there is still a lot to do. Being in L.A., movies are big; it is even bigger in Westwood when certain streets are blocked off for hours in anticipation of celebrities coming to movie openings. Students hear so much about celebrities coming a hop, skip, and a jump away from UCLA that they do not even bat an eye. Here is a short list of fun things to do: quarterly Undie Run, Santa Monica beach, LA food adventures, free movies and sneak peaks with CAPs, and Spring Sing. Extra-Curricular: There are so many interest groups at UCLA, you might even hear some groups that you never knew existed before. (Ex. Taiko Drums, Magic groups) UCLA truly supports their student-run organizations because it recognizes that students are building their ideas into reality with their own hands. UCLA has tremendous funding for its students’ missions. UCLA gym is a two-story building decked out with the essentials along with rock-climbing walls, racquetball rooms, and gymnastic room. The quarterly pass for classes are extremely cheap ($25 per quarter to unlimited number of classes) compared to commercial gyms. For premeds: UCLA does not have a premed committee to help your journey. That being said there are resources out there if you are proactive about acquiring them to help your gain admissions to medical school. Some clubs hold socials between the UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine medical students and UCLA undergraduates; it’s a great way to hear advice on how to approach applying to medical school and what it is like on the other side. Ronald Reagan Medical Center is a block south of campus. It is a leader in healthcare on the West coast. Many premeds volunteer their as a greeter or part of transportation team. Students who are part of Student Stroke Team or Emergency Medicine Research Assistants have an exclusive privilege to volunteer and work alongside the medical team in the Emergency Room. If you are interested in medicine, these two groups are definitely a great way to gain exposure! Every physiological science major goes through PhySci 107A, where students are given a chance to study generously donated cadavers. Talk about getting a jump start on medical school. Miscellaneous: In terms of student diversity, UCLA is somewhat diverse. We have students from various ethnic groups, but slightly less than half of the population is Asian. Within the Asian population, most students are Asian American, but we do have a significantly number of international students. Being a state-school, many students are California-grown. UCLA leadership of the schools is extremely organized. Class catalogues, academic calendars and financial packages are posted in a timely manner. Mistake postings or cancelled events by the UCLA faculty are unheard of. For students who plan to start their careers immediately after their undergraduate studies, the career center is welcoming and informative. It should be noted that some services such as the JumpStart Program do require additional fees. End note: UCLA is a school of growth and learning. The best part of UCLA is that no two students have the same experience because your UCLA experience is one that you craft all on your own.
UCLA has a top-ranked graduate school of education, with a focus on social justice and equity in education. The program has high expectations of graduates in terms of writing, presenting at conferences, and publishing which is extremely helpful; however, funding can be hard to come by.
It's not a college. It's a university. I got my doctorate there. That being said, UCLA is a good place to do your doctoral work in Psychology. But if you're thinking about doing a PhD in psych, you should probably already know that.
School infrastructure needs some work, but professors are doing research in interesting areas and classes are great.
Loved it. Would highly recommend the school, campus and city
Competitive. Not all counselors are helpful. A lot of school spirit. Classes are difficult but there are many professors willing to help.
Great experience, no complaints. Study hard, professors won't let you slide through these classes.
UCLA was the best choice I ever made. The classes, facilities, experiences here were exceptional and the location of UCLA is perfection.
UCLA was a great place for someone who wanted a diverse array of experiences. I didn't know what I wanted to get out of college going in, but with so many majors, programs, people, groups and classes I felt like I found my place - which was vastly different than my friends, but that just made it all the better.