University of Southern California Reviews

  • 465 Reviews
  • Los Angeles (CA)
  • Annual Tuition: $58,195
87% of 465 students said this degree improved their career prospects
94% of 465 students said they would recommend this school to others
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Student & Graduate Reviews

In Debt
  • Reviewed: 1/18/2021
"If you are white, you'll have a decent experience with this school. You'll be able to meet with advisors and professors in a timely fashion, get relevant feedback, connections and help. You'll essentially get what you pay for: instruction, objective feedback etc. If you're not white, hold on to your hat. You'll be ignored, probably told to leave, you'll have to hold meetings and formal inquiries to get basic needs met. It's even more difficult online because I sometimes have to rely on my white peers to email faculty on my behalf to ask my questions or find out what is going on with the scheduling and the future of the program. Many school-wide and department-wide announcement emails don't make it to all the students and they have yet to do anything about that. Registration has been a mess every time--they make lots of changes to schedules and professors after registration is over, which would be one thing, but then they don't even tell students. Some have complained, and they are told that schedule changes are due to the pandemic. International students have no option to defer their enrollment even though their classes are at odd hours of the night sometimes. Also, USC has almost no opportunities for work study at all, about two job postings a semester--financial aid staff however, are very good at staying connected and answering all your questions. Unless you need the clout, just go to a small school where your needs will be met."
Morgan Pavey
  • Reviewed: 6/30/2019
  • Degree: Performing Arts
"If you are planning to attend USC to study theater, my biggest piece of advice would be to take advantage of your resources outside of the department. Los Angeles is not an easy place to get started as an actor, and school will incubate you from trials and tribulations of beginning a career. It's a great idea to get your feet wet while you're still studying. Go see productions at local theaters, and start cultivating relationships with working professionals as your mentors. Take a class over the summer at a professional studio (if you can afford to, or see if they have a work-study program that works for you), or participate in the LACCA internships. Start meeting people and building your professional skillset NOW, because it will serve you as a safety net once you graduate. Within the theater department, get involved in student productions. Classes and official SDA productions will give you exciting, near-professional experiences. But student productions will link you with your peers who are creating work from the ground up. They were consistently my most fulfilling experiences, and my connections from those independent productions are the same ones that have gone on to produce work (and hire me) after school. I also cannot emphasize enough how you should take advantage of studying abroad. Even if it is not with BADA (which I loved), go for a semester to just branch out and try something new. The best artists are often those who can incorporate a wide variety of perspectives and experiences in their work, and it's important to go out and live a full life. Going to another country will never be as easy and well-supported as it is within your school program, so find out early on what it might take to get to the place you want to go (for example, language classes, literature classes, or a long time-line on the application process), and find a way to make it work. If you're on scholarship, make sure you remember to apply your scholarship along with your general abroad application -- I didn't know I needed to do that with mine, and ended up incurring a larger cost than I needed to. For the star ratings on the questions below, please note that we had a different dean running the school when I was there (2010-2014), and I believe elements of the program have since changed. I'd look at someone's rating who graduated more recently than I did for a more accurate assessment. IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS AT ALL, please feel free to get in touch with me, or other SDA alumni. We're a good group, and will be happy to help you in your choice."
Sandy Flores
  • Reviewed: 6/4/2019
  • Degree: Political Science
"Going to USC was a very unique experience. I am a first generation Latina, so I definitely went through a culture shock when I first started. The good thing though is that there are a lot of programs that help facilitate the transition. There is an organization called First Generation Student Union that is meant to bring together first-generation students and has monthly meetings that touch on important topics in college. So, what I overall love about USC is that there are so many organizations that it doesn't matter what your background, interests, or goals are you can definitely find your niche here!"
Catherine Humenuk
  • Reviewed: 4/15/2019
  • Degree: Social Work
"The online MSW program at USC allows students from anywhere to access excellent professors and a fantastic alumni network. The program offers concentrations in a variety of areas, from macro practice to mental health to military social work. Professors are knowledgeable and passionate. The alumni network - Trojan Nation - is amazing and allows you to find job opportunities anywhere you go in the US."
Kelly Lee
  • Reviewed: 3/31/2019
  • Degree: School Counseling
"At first I was hesitant because the program is only offered for online-distance learning students. But I find that this really benefits students who are not living near USC and want to become school counselors, and still want to keep their day jobs. I recommend to anyone wanting to enroll in this program to be good at self-discipline and have high self-efficacy skills. I love this program and wouldn't change anything about the way that I have received my learning, and I have gotten to know my professors and classmates very well (even those virtually!) I love the trauma informed focus that they teach, and how diverse the student and faculty body is."
  • Reviewed: 9/20/2018
  • Degree: Journalism
"Things will always fall through the cracks anytime you try to do something on a mass scale. The same is true for USC Annenberg's Graduate Journalism programs. Basically, this program is just the BA Journalism curriculum but for students who didn't major in the subject in college. If you're a slab of clay who doesn't know what a newspaper is, USC will mold you. But the more experience you have in journalism entering this program, the more frustrated you will be. The tricky thing about a Journalism MA is figuring out if you really need it. You need a law degree to become a lawyer, but don't need a BA or an MA journalism degree to become a journalist. But then again, if you're writing for a small town paper and want to make the leap to the New York Times, or if you're at a small market TV station and want to get to NBC News, USC might have the internships and a couple of resources to get you there. There's no clear answer to "who" the MA is really for, and who it is for not. But do not think for a second that the staff or faculty USC will help you answer that question. They will accept anyone who applies and is willing to pay the tuition. If you're already skilled in say radio, you will not have the opportunity to test out of an intro radio class or seminar. The professors are honestly very insecure about that and will take it personally if you suggest you don't need their help. Many of them are in their 60s and 70s and have been in a position of power for so long that nobody can question their intelligence or authority. Often times instructors teach outdated materials to students since they've been out of the field for so long but there's nothing students can do about it. Then there's the opposite problem. Some of the younger professors covering topics like digital media or social video haven't spent enough time in the field mastering those subjects before becoming teachers, with it being very evident that they have no idea what they're talking about. And don't you dare think about dropping out, because you'll be missing out on USC's incredible professional network who will make all your dreams come true. "Then why are so many former students still unemployed or not practicing journalism after they graduate?" "Because they didn't love Annenberg enough." "But they got really good grades, and it looks like they were involved with student activities and built relationships with professors and professionals, and..." "NO THEY DIDN'T LOVE ANNENBERG ENOUGH THAT'S WHY THEY FAILED!!!!!" What's most ironic is that the school emphasizes the need to question instutions and authority, except of course for Annenberg, which students must always have blind faith in. If you have no prior professional or student experience in journalism, USC is a great fit. If you know what a byline is and have had one or two before, stick to Northwestern, Mizzou, Syracuse, or anywhere else. It is not worth it."
  • Reviewed: 4/17/2018
  • Degree: Human Resources
"After getting a bachelors degree and law degree in person, I was looking for a prestigious online program that would allow me to work and attend classes. USC has been phenomenal in every dimension. The professors are HR leaders that have worked for very large corporations. My classmates have also been friendly, helpful, and easy to work with. While the degree is expensive, getting a great education from a top-tier school is worth the costs. Fight On!!!"
  • Reviewed: 3/13/2018
  • Degree: Health Sciences
"This program is excellent for students looking to go into healthcare and related fields. Good majority of the students from the program has gone on to medical or dental schools. Quite a few students also is now in healthcare-related work, whether it is non-profit, law, or business aspect of medicine. The classes could be challenging, especially if you take the clinical track, since you'll be taking first-year medical school classes with medical students. It is a good way to prepare for medical school. If you get into this program, you should definitely take advantage of all the overseas trips taken over breaks because it will be very hands-on experience that you may not experience outside this program. Be aware that it can be pricey, but overall, this has been a good program."
Jessica K.
  • Reviewed: 1/11/2018
  • Degree: Social Work
"This program offers great teachers, staff and resources. The social work program is really innovative and doesn't follow traditional boundaries, this program is really influenced by the latest research and social systemic problems that have been brushed under the rug. I feel like educationally, the school works very hard to stay at the top of their game and empowers their students to achieve greatness in their lives. Financially, however, my institution has not supported me. Even though I am a minority and have been discriminated against at different parts of my life, since I am Caucasian I do not qualify for most of the minority scholarships."
Ashley P
  • Reviewed: 12/22/2017
  • Degree: Business
"The University of Southern California is a university known for it's research and academic contributions as well as outstanding sports program. Community engagement, inclusiveness, and social responsibility are just a few of the initiatives that are overarching themes within all of their programs. However, USC is best known for having an AMAZING and POWERFUL network of people, including students, alumni, and staff, AKA The Trojan Family, who support each other and collaborate to create an impressive future around themselves. There are so many resources available to students, but the real value is in the people with whom you are forever associated with and it truly is the age old adage. "It's not (just) what you know, but who you know". USC has given me a gift and opportunity to interact and engage with so many impressive individuals and armed with these tools, I know that wherever my path takes me, I will always have a lifetime connection to this family."
  • Reviewed: 12/9/2017
  • Degree: Educational Leadership
"USC is an awesome university. The faculty and staff are well prepared to educate and support adult learners in various fields of study. I appreciate the quality disciplines specific dissertation support services and professional resources available to students. As a result of the time I have spent at this university, I have elevated my skills at teaching, writing proposals, and making professional decisions based on quality research."
David K Wilson
  • Reviewed: 10/26/2017
  • Degree: Film Production
"USC film school is famous for churning out top notch film professionals. This is a reputation that is well earned. When I graduated from USC I leapt from PA jobs to line producer jobs right away. I'm seven years out of school and I'm about to complete my third feature as a full Producer. My time at USC was one of the most fun and exciting times of my life. I was fully engaged in the art of filmmaking and I was making friendships with wonderful and talented people. If you have the dream to become a filmmaker and you can get into this program you will not be disappointed."
  • Reviewed: 10/20/2017
  • Degree: Teaching
"Phenomenal experience. I was accepted into USC after teaching at a public institution for a year; I really wanted to take it a step further by getting my masters and pursuing a physics credential. The professors were top notch and really helped me gain a deeper understanding of pedagogical techniques and differentiation geared toward diversity. If all teachers were trained through a program similar to USC Rossier, I believe we would have a much higher number of competent teachers. Being able to "Attend" class from home was very convenient and cut out any travel time that would result from attending an on-campus program. Honestly, I felt so much more focused in class compared to a traditional classroom, likely because I was just a "head and face" so others would know if I were to be zoning out. Class discussions themselves were rich in collaboration and small group work which was very helpful for learning how to apply theoretical knowledge gleaned in the course readings and educational material. Also, when you are a teacher, the name of the school you get your degree from CAN matter; having a degree from USC definitely puts you ahead in the game. The program is expensive, but the program is genius; I do not think there are many other institutions that could have prepared me better as a teacher."
Troy Boy
  • Reviewed: 9/1/2017
  • Degree: Engineering
"This is a great school with a great atmosphere. There is something about being part of the Trojan family that gives you a sense of pride. The people are friendly and helpful. The facilities are among the best in the nation. The one negative thing I would say, however, is that there are a lot of professors that are more focused on their own research and career rather than teaching."
  • Reviewed: 9/1/2017
  • Degree: Social Work
"College is a great time for self-growth. You get to learn more about yourself in a space where your identity is celebrated--it's not just about the classes you take, but the connections you make through friendships and activities outside of school. College is a bigger, brighter place of discovery with lots of fun to be had."
  • Reviewed: 9/1/2017
  • Degree: Engineering
"USC is a great university with a rigorous curriculum. There were many opportunities to network and advance my career. I'm glad to a part of the Trojan family."
  • Reviewed: 9/1/2017
  • Degree: Social Work
"I had a great experience however that was based more on my internship placements than the academics. Very expensive and you need to really build connections to ensure you will be successful and the degree is worth the value."
  • Reviewed: 9/1/2017
  • Degree: Computer Science
"It has a great environment and a variety of different studies you can take."
  • Reviewed: 9/1/2017
  • Degree: Social Work
"The USC School of Social Work is entirely in it for the money. The program does not have enough staff or internships to support the number of students that are admitted to the program. Please think very carefully before selecting this program - you will get the same education with significantly better support and networking from a Cal State school at a fraction of the cost."
  • Reviewed: 9/1/2017
  • Degree: Public Health
"Expensive but excellent classes and networking."