University: UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA SANTA BARBARA
City: Santa Barbara
Country: United States
Continent: North America
Field of study: economics
Study type: Summer Sessions
In August and September 2008, I took part in the 6-week Summer Session B at UCSB, where I took the Econ 185 course in Accounting Information Systems. See mcat-test-centers for University of Technology, Sydney.
As a student at the University of the German Armed Forces in Munich, the requirements for taking a course were different from those of “civilian” students. That’s why I was only able to take one course, which was a “real summer session course” and therefore not an “extension course”.
My friend and I were the only two foreigners in this normal summer session course, while all other foreigners we met (including 4 Germans) took part in the extension program. The advantage of the normal courses is that the level is completely different than with extension courses. The Germans we spoke to were very disappointed with the Extension program because the courses there are more comparable to adult education courses than to university courses.
I can only recommend our course. We had a very good teacher who made the lessons interesting and relaxed. Overall, the course was probably an easier one, but still quite work-intensive due to the lots of homework and the 2 exams.
In the 6 weeks we had to read 2 books completely and occupied ourselves with homework twice a week for about 2-3 hours. We studied about half a day extra for each of the two exams and thus also got an A each.
It was interesting that the homework was collected and graded each time. 50% of these grades are then included in the final grade. So diligently doing our homework was half the battle.
We lived in a Residence Hall, a classic student residence.
Strangely, we were both not only the only foreigners in our course, but also the only ones in the dorm. Accordingly, we only dealt with Americans from the start, which I found to be a huge advantage.
The Germans we met told us that they had very little contact with Americans overall, since they all lived in the International Houses and were only foreigners in their extension courses. Accordingly, they also had difficulties in making contact with Ammis and therefore hardly any access to the interesting private parties.
We, on the other hand, were very well received by our neighbors in the hallway and made many real friends in the 6 weeks.
I have to say that we didn’t really go there to study, but rather to get to know the country and its people and to party with Americans.
And you can say: Santa Barbara is by far the best thing that has ever happened to me for partying!
Not only are the clubs in Santa Barbara great fun… if you know enough local people, Isla Vista’s private parties are even better!
Isla Vista has to be imagined as a large district in which only students live in shared apartments in terraced houses, semi-detached houses or apartments.
Except for 2 days a week, all hell breaks loose. On a Saturday you can easily find 20 different large private parties, to which anyone who feels like it is invited.
Regarding maintenance costs:
During the week we ate in one of the 3 canteens. We booked the meal plan with our room. We opted for the smallest meal plan and were later glad that we didn’t have a larger one.
You rarely manage to take part in all meals, whether it’s because you’re going on a trip or just don’t feel like coming back from the beach so early.
Overall, the food there was relatively expensive, we paid $7 per meal. At first we thought it was great because the canteens are far better than at German universities. The selection seems huge at first & there is all you can eat for the money.
However, you quickly notice that almost everything except the salad is fast food & and there is the same thing every 3rd day.
After 3 weeks, the hamburgers made me regularly sick.
Otherwise we were very lucky with the dollar exchange rate and therefore bought a lot cheaply.
If you’re worried about customs, let me tell you: you’ll be annoyed later that you didn’t take more with you;)
In general, I can say that these 6 weeks were the best time of my entire studies and I would do it again at any time…. If I could afford it.
We spent a good 8000€ in 6 weeks, so it was damn expensive fun!
If you have any further questions, just send me an email!