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University of California, Berkeley (UC BERKELEY) reviews

169 reviews
4.06 / 5 based on 169 reviews
Useful  |  1
alexsalinas
ICADE, Madrid, Spain
International Relations, Undergraduate, Independent
University of California, Berkeley
5.0/5
Languages
Language of instruction: English
Was learning English a key decision factor?
Yes, I wanted to improve my English
How much did you improve your English?
My level before: At ease in most situations
My level after: No problems in any areas (including slang)
Language difficulties
Social
Educational
Administrative / Institutional
Overall
Personal comments
When you register for these courses, a proficiency level in English is required, so when I got there I was able to communicate and understand the professors easily. However, my English definetely improved in Oral skills and Listening Comprehension. I was able to use slang and phrasal verbs myself and not so many proper "Oxford-english" words. Besides, and due to my choice of attending a long course, my writting also got more agile, to the point that even back in the evening in my apartment, I jotted down the shopping list in English instead of in my mother tongue!! How about that? ha ha
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Useful  |  1
alexsalinas
ICADE, Madrid, Spain
International Relations, Undergraduate, Independent
University of California, Berkeley
2.5/5
Expenses
Main source of funding:
Personal savings
Other sources of funding:
Family
Work opportunities:
It was not legal for me to work
Personal spending habits
In general, I perceived everything was more expensive but gas and certain american brands that I buy import in Spain. Nightlife and going to the movies is ridiculous, far too expensive for european standards. My appartment was expensive too, but that's what it takes to be so close to campus. I think that if I had had a car to move around in an easier way, I would have eventually saved a bit more.
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Housing, Food, Nightlife, Overall:
was more expensive than at home.
Travel:
was the same price as at home.
Telephone:
was less expensive than at home.
Accessibility of student needs
Second-hand text books
Second-hand household items
Computers / Internet
Administrative
Money from home
Personal comments
It was a nice surprise to see that the student card they gave allowed me to step in the public transport for free. They should do the same with the BART system.
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Useful  |  0
alexsalinas
ICADE, Madrid, Spain
International Relations, Undergraduate, Independent
University of California, Berkeley
5.0/5
Academic
Course recommendations
People should not be afraid of making a bad choice. The university lets you change, drop, etc very easily in what I understand it's a great asset from an international student's point of view!
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My academic experiences
Quality of courses
Variety of courses
Access to resources
Interaction with teachers
Interaction with international students
Interaction with local students
Personal comments
I was at first a bit surprised about the distance one has to stroll to get to professors' offices no matter they're from the same department.
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My opinion of the university assessment
Exams at end of course
Exams throughout the course
Essays and/or projects at the end of course
Essays and/or projects throughout the course
Overall
Useful  |  0
alexsalinas
ICADE, Madrid, Spain
International Relations, Undergraduate, Independent
University of California, Berkeley
4.3/5
Overall
I wish I had known...
Each american university should try to explain, even subjectively, which is their add-value compared to other colleges more clearly. Berkeley, besides its impressive historical record and its comittment with peace and liberties, has some other assets more in the day-by-day level, like having a comprehensive campus where anything is foot-distance from any other facility. That's rare in the States. They should put more stress on it.
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In my opinion:
Most people loved it.
Important factors in my choice
(1) Unimportant – (4) Very important
Academic reasons
4
Culture
4
Costs
1
Activities
3
Campus life
4
Party / people
3
Weather / location
2
Personal recommendation
Unique nightlife, american-college atmosphere and challenging courses in a cocktail not-to-be-missed. Probably what europeans are looking for when imagining a summer session program.
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During my experience abroad, I ...
(1) Never – (4) A lot
Became familiar with another culture
3
Traveled
3
Improved language skills
4
Met people from other countries
3
Became more independent
4
Partied a lot
4
Experienced a change in life
3
Advanced my studies & career
4
Final comments
I encourage you to go to the States when you're over 21, otherwise you won't go into clubs and you won't be able to buy a beer.
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Useful  |  0
alexsalinas
ICADE, Madrid, Spain
International Relations, Undergraduate, Independent
University of California, Berkeley
5.0/5
Student life
Describe host city:
Student life dominates the city
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Nightlife: Takes place mostly outside the university/student environment
Activities, Travel: Takes place both within and outside of the university/student environment
Personal social experience
Activities
Nightlife
Travel
Overall
Personal comments
Quiet Cafe Strada and Mel's, a 100% typical american diner would rank among my favourites. To have a drink I personally preferred to jump the bay to SF.
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Useful  |  0
alexsalinas
ICADE, Madrid, Spain
International Relations, Undergraduate, Independent
University of California, Berkeley
3.8/5
Housing
Type of housing: Apartment/House
Arranged by: Independently - My choice
If returning, I would choose: On campus
Why?
Closer interaction with other students. Anyway I was happy about being independent, having my own schedule and a quiet space to study. Besides, my apartement was virtually on campus.
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Personal assessment
Cost
Facilities
Location
Cleanliness
Space
Personal comments
It is nicely managed by a department of the University, and through the web page they have an international student like me can easily get in touch with subletters, etc. This one facility they have, the International House, I think it's great for a summer stay.
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