California State University Fullerton Review (47)

University: California State University Fullerton

City: The Angels

Country: USA

Continent: North America

Field of study: business Informatics

Study type: semester abroad

California State University Fullerton Review (47)

At first I looked at a lot of universities on the west coast and actually wanted to go to the CSULB first. However, internationals couldn’t take any business courses there, so I decided to go to CSUF. Haven’t regretted it at all. See existingcountries for Universitat Autonoma De Barcelona Review 2.


After I got the acceptance from the university, I booked my flight straight away and registered in the Facebook group to look for an apartment. I found my future landlord through the Facebook group. He is an American teacher who owns a house and always rents his two extra rooms to international students. Luckily I was the only international this semester. In the other room lived his nephew, who pursued a musical career in LA strives for So two Americans in one house, ideal for improving your English. Teacher was very very kind and generous. For example, he picked me up from the airport in LA, provided me with two bicycles and a car!! I was only supposed to pay for the insurance for the car, which is perfectly fine. In addition, I had a furnished room and paid really little for an American single room. He also helped my friends find a place to live, and even my friends’ friends. In the end, they stayed with his friends, which everyone was very happy with.

Start in the US

I booked my flight two weeks before the start of term to make a stopover on the east coast. I traveled with two other German students (whom I met through the MicroEdu site). At first it was a little strange traveling with people you had never seen or heard of before. But things went very well and I kept in touch with both of them until the end of the semester. I recommend staying on the east coast either before or after the semester. First: to split the total flight time and not burn 14 hours in the plane. Second: Because these cities are on the flight route anyway and because domestic flights are quite cheap. From NYC to LA you pay about $150. We then spent 1 week in NYC and did a 2-day bus tour to Philadelphia and Washington DC.


My landlord picked us up in LA and showed us the area in Fullerton. He then took care of the insurance for the car in the first week and we drove to AT&T together to get me a mobile phone contract for six months. That made the start a lot easier for me.

Course choice

The day before uni started, I got an email from the uni saying that I had to sign up for most of the courses, which I have chosen, am not qualified and have insufficient prior knowledge. I have 24 hours to choose courses with lower numbers. I then asked my lecturer in Germany to send me written confirmation that I was qualified for the courses and that I would also take them in Germany. My lecturer then replied to me (within 24 hours!!!) and I forwarded the e-mail to CSUF. I waited 2 weeks for an answer (in vain). So I decided to go to the department and talk to the people in charge. Long story short -> I didn’t get a course. Rationale: I would fail, blame CSUF and not have a good time here. Instead, I should look for other courses to get to the 12 units.Courses chosen that could be fun for me :

  • Tennis
  • Soccer
  • Golf
  • To swim
  • Spanish


Fullerton/Orange County is ideally located for exploring the west coast! Here is a list of places in the vicinity :

  • Beaches and national parks at the beginning, city trips later (weather in the fall of the semester)
  • Canada or Mexico during the semester (reason: visa )
  • There are passes for national parks -> cheaper
  • 10 min Brea (Mall) or Brians (Pub)
  • 10 min to Anaheim (Disneyland)
  • 35min Strand Newport (Whale Watching) oder Huntington
  • 35-45min Laguna Beach
  • 45min Long Beach
  • 50 minutes LA (Manhattan Beach) and Hollywood
  • 1h Zuma Beach
  • Catalina Island (Diving)
  • 1h Venice Beach
  • 1h Santa Monica
  • 1h 30 min San Diego (The Baked Bear -> Ice Cream and 2 Cookies + Sandwich, Oceans Beaches)
  • 1h 30 min Beverly Hills
  • 2h Joshua Tree National Park
  • 2h Palm Springs
  • 2-3 h Santa Barbara
  • 2-3 h Coronado Beach
  • 4h Vegas (stop at Hoover Dam)
  • 4-5 h Valley of Fire State Park
  • 4-5 h Pismo Beach
  • 5h Kings Canyon National Park
  • 5-6 h Death Valley National Park
  • 6-7 h Yosemite National Park
  • 6-7 h Monterey (Big Sur)
  • 6 hrs Stanford (connected to SF)
  • 7 h Sacramento
  • 7 h Valley of the Moon (in Verbindung mit SF)
  • 6-8h SF Coastroute (Alcatraz, Cablecar, Marin Headlands, Golden Gate Park)
  • 6-8h Grand Canyon
  • 8-10h Antelope Canyon


  • (Downtown LA)
  • $6.50 Metrolink or $12 Amtrak
  • the very best sushi (Octopus Japanese Restaurant),
  • die besten Donuts (California Donuts)
  • and the most beautiful neighborhoods (Art District, Chinatown, Koreatown, Little Tokyo).
  • Sausage kitchen in the Art District DTLA (German Bratwurst)
  • Vegas Seafood (All u can eat, near Madame Tussaud) $20 (Mongolian Grill, Sushi, Crab Legs, Steaks, Fries to Salad Bar, Fruit Bar and Frozen Yogurt)
  • Griffith Obervatory at night
  • Mullholand Drive
  • Rodeo Drive
  • Museum LACMA, Broad Museum
  • Concerts at the Staples Center
  • The Grove
  • Football at Rosebowl Stadium (Pasadena)
  • TV show tapings and film premieres

TV Series, Sitcoms,,,,

  • Big Bang Theory, Jimmy Kimmel

Before I flew, I read a number of reports and summarized the most important information. Here’s the most important thing:

California ID at DMV (authority) -> so you don’t have to carry your passport with you (it took me almost 3 months….)


  • Pocket knife with tool
  • distribution socket
  • Power Bank (Travel)
  • Calculator (course dependent)
  • Wintersachen (Fall Semester)
  • headphones
  • earplugs for sleeping

Credit cards (preferably two)

  • Visa card (DKB) -> withdraw free of charge from foreign ATMs. Even if the machine charges a fee, this will be refunded to the DKB after the receipt has been sent.

I also had a Visa card from the Consors Bank to pay without a foreign transaction fee, but they also introduced the said fee in December. I can recommend the Eurowings from Barclaycard, as they have no foreign transaction fee and you can withdraw money free of charge. And it only costs €60 from the first year. But until then you can cancel it again. Rental car insurance and health insurance are also included. You can really save a lot of money here.


  • 15.000€

CSUF tuition is currently $5622. Add to that health insurance for around $600. The Hanse Merkur insurance cost around 300 euros, but ADAC has a cheaper version (but with fewer benefits). You should calculate around 1000 euros for the flight and around $300 for the visa. Expect to pay $1500-$2000 a month for living expenses (if you’re making a good living but still planning a bigger trip each month).

  • Application process: 100
  • View: 300
  • Flight: 800
  • Hotel for the first night: 60
  • Rent: 4,500
  • Flights (voyages): 985
  • Upkeep (food, etc.): 1,000
  • Tuition: 4,500
  • Medical insurance: 150
  • Free time: 3,000

Total: 15,395

  • Tuition: 5,000
  • Housing: 5,000
  • Travel, round trips: 4,000
  • Go out, eat: 3,000
  • Rent a car: 700

Total: €18,000

Shuttle from LAX to Fullerton

  • 44$ p.P.
  • each additional person $9
  • Or Uber…


  • UV (above campus )
  • Apartments not furnished (Facebook (CSUF Roommates needed) and Craigslist) -> watch out, some ads are dubious from the start
  • UH Furnished: Pool, Gym, Lounge Area, Computer Room, TV, Pool Table, Events (Taco Tuesday, Free Donuts or Angels Game Tickets)

Apartments (significantly cheaper than UV or UH -> 2 to 3 times)

  • Streams Apartment (10 min bike)
  • The Golden
  • Lake
  • Monteclaire
  • Moonraker
  • Greenhouse
  • La Villita


  • Bedding at Wallmart
  • Furniture at the Church Furniture Give-Away (saves money)


  • twice as expensive as in Germany
  • healthy food very expensive


  • Target
  • Albertson
  • Ralphs
  • Smart&Finals
  • Mexican Northgate Markets (cheapest fruit and veg there)
  • 99ct Store (pay attention to durability)

CSUF start

  • one week before the start, internationals are divided into groups to enroll (orientation week)
  • Campus Tour
  • Launch Day, everything is said about CSUF
  • During the application process, you had to send a list of the courses you wanted to take to the university. After the introductory day, you could then see in the system whether you were admitted to the courses or not. If it didn’t work out with the desired courses, you should still show up for them and talk to the professor. They usually let you in!
  • Join clubs for “College” experience (introduced 2 weeks before semester starts)
  • Campus Insurance $700 (mandatory)
  • You can pick up a free bus ticket from CSUF.

Way to university

  • bike, bus or on foot
  • not by car -> few parking spaces and parking fee

Uni Campus

  • Pollack Library (In the heart of campus) -> 4 floors with computers, printers, study areas and separate rooms for group meetings or similar.
  • Titan Bookstore has textbook rental, stationery, electronics, as well as a small supermarket and college merchandise, computer repair
  • Starbucks
  • Student Health Center
  • Student Recreation Center (gym with rock climbing wall, running track, basketball courts, and outdoor pool for a $20 fee)
  • Modern two-storey gym with basketball hall, volleyball and badminton field, racquetball hall, courses, climbing wall, fitness equipment over two floors, swimming pool, etc. (called Recreation Center, $120 per semester)
  • Intramurals (leisure tournaments where you put your own teams together, I played football there, you get to know a lot of Americans here)
  • Titan Soccer, Titan Basketball, Titan Ice Hockey, Titan Lacrosse, Titan Baseball…etc. (Titans are the names of the CSUF teams, I kicked for the Soccer Club Team)
  • Foodcourts
  • Billiard, PlayStation, Xbox, etc.
  • Very well stocked library
  • Lots of leisure activities through various clubs and organizations that you can join locally

University offers

  • free weekly film days (in our own cinema)
  • concerts
  • Give-Aways
  • Clubs (e.g. German American Club, which offers trips to theme parks, beach bonfires and hikes, among other things)
  • Events Arts Department Theatrical performances A Christmas Carol

Car (essential)

A must-have, without a doubt! I think here it’s a question of money and willingness to take risks, but here’s this: Do you rent a car: Congratulations, you’re probably doing quite well financially : D But you have the security on your side for that. If you buy a car: be careful. Don’t be fooled by swanky cars, don’t buy an A6 just because it’s cheap – there’s often a reason for that! Look around for Toyota and Co. and if it is possible, do a check at a workshop beforehand or take someone with you who actually has an idea!

  • either buy or rent
  • book better on German sites (Check24, Sixt) -> better insurance, cheaper price
  • Uber (better than taxi)
  • Rent: firefly-car rental” in Newport Beach although that’s a little farther away. However, the cars are really cheap there, we went to Vegas for a weekend, so pick up on Friday and bring back on Monday, paid $85 with insurance and everything.
  • Buy: Standard Auto Center, owned by Chicho Tarcicio, 812 Williamson Avenue, Fullerton 92832 (Sold fair price of $3000. Added to this was $350 liability insurance cost.)


  • 20-50 people
  • Overall it was easier to get into the later classes as most try to get into the daytime classes.
  • -> to what extent the textbook is necessary. These are in fact relatively expensive. If it is necessary, try to buy used books in various Facebook groups. Some courses still require online access. You can also buy this code separately from the book, for example, to save costs.
  • possible choice: twice a week 75 minutes or once a week 150 minutes
  • little homework
  • short announced quizzes
  • two midterms
  • a final exam
  • rarely open questions, mostly 50 multiple choice questions
  • Questions as they are in the script -> learn by heart
  • presentations and group work

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