Should I attend UC Berkeley, UCLA, or UCSD? (details inside)

<p>I am a sociology major. I'm a little torn. Actually, I'm very torn.</p>

<p>Academically, Berkeley would be the smart choice for me considering its prestige, well-known faculty, and number 1 sociology department in the nation. Thing is, I will be paying a lot more and I will be very far from home. </p>

<p>UCLA is not as highly ranked in sociology but still pretty high up there. It's also closer to home, and in my opinion it's just as prestigious in many people's eyes. I also like the environment but I will be paying a little more here than Berkeley. I'm not sure if it's worth it.</p>

<p>Finally, there is UCSD. I was offered a full ride here with a bunch of perks here and there. It's also super close to home (which is nice, I live in San Diego btw). But the only downside is that its sociology program is not as highly ranked.</p>

<p>I'm planning on going to law school after college so I don't know if the rankings matter as much as the GPA. But I'm trying to factor in the Letters of Rec from the professors and if some would hold more value because they're written by well-known professors (even if it's for law school and not grad school for soc). Finances are a big factor for me too so that's why I'm swayed by UCSD.</p>

<p>What do you all think?</p>

<p>Well if you're going to Law School it's all about GPA+LSAT so don't worry too much about prestige. I wouldn't go to SD if I were you because college is when you're supposed to move away and become more independent.</p>

<p>Thank you. I'm actually moving onto The Village Transfer Apartments if I go to UCSD. :)</p>

<p>Any other input is appreciated.</p>

<p>Since you're not commuting to UCSD I'd say just go to UCSD. You already have a full ride plus said perks that you mentioned. It's ultimately up to you though! have you visited all the campuses?</p>

<p>I agree with the other poster that your scores and gpa will be far more important the any prestige, plus aren't all UC's prestigious in the eyes of the world =]</p>

<p>Go where you're going to be happy. Based on what you wrote, it sounds like UCB is out of the question, it's UCLA or UCSD. Advice I give to everyone that especially applies to you since you live so close, VISIT THE SCHOOLS! Spend a day on each campus and meet some people and professors in your department. You'll most likely feel which one is the right choice.</p>

<p>Thank you to you both. </p>

<p>I have visited UCSD and UCLA. I have not visited Berkeley. I've only visited surrounding areas like San Francisco. I didn't really like it when I visited. It's also too far from home so I most likely won't be attending there. </p>

<p>I absolutely love UCSD and UCLA but for completely different reasons. UCLA for its fun atmosphere and school spirit. UCSD is home-y and relaxing. I will probably pick UCSD for its slight edge over UCLA with the full ride. :) Whew!</p>

<p>i would go to UCB.</p>

<p>Congrats on getting accepted to the "big three."</p>

<p>If finances are a big concern for you, choosing UCSD would be the smartest option. But UCLA and Berkeley are higher ranked than UCSD overall. However with law school as others have said it's about GPA+LSAT scores. Wherever you go, get the best grades possible and study for the lsat a lot. ;)</p>

<p>tolacis- I agree with you. </p>

<p>UCLA, UCSD and Cal have its strengths in certain areas. </p>

<p>For most pure science majors like bio, physics, math, engineering,psychology as a social science, political science, majors that do well on the LSAT, Pre-law, business- Cal is stronger. </p>

<p>For pre-med/health, any discipline in the health sciences, psychology as a medical discipline (psychobiology), neuropsychology, - UCLA and UCSD is stronger</p>

<p>Our family friend told me this. In fact, he works at UC Berkeley.</p>

<p>Berkeley is slightly more prestigious but you can not go wrong with these two great schools.</p>

<p>Where do you plan on going to Law School?</p>

<p>Thanks chailatte :)</p>

<p>@darksaber
I don't have any specific plans yet for law school. I just want to get into the best law school that I can possibly get into.</p>

<p>If you're looking to go to the absolute best Law Schools (top 10), then where you go to undergrad will matter. I can't say it is the prestige (although law is an absolutely prestige-soaked profession), but something about UCB makes it so they send way more people to top 10 law schools than UCLA, and something about UCB and UCLA makes it so they send waaaayyyy more to top 10s than UCSD. I doubt it is the quality of students since UCLA and UCB generally attract the same caliber of students.</p>

<p><a href="http://talk.collegeconfidential.com/duke-university/326689-law-school-harvard-yale-uva-undergrad-representation.html%5B/url%5D"&gt;http://talk.collegeconfidential.com/duke-university/326689-law-school-harvard-yale-uva-undergrad-representation.html&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p>

<p>Yale</a> Law School undergraduate representation</p>

<p>These are top feeder schools to the top ranked Law Schools. You'll always hear that people from Chico got into Yale or that people from Irvine got into Harvard. These are misleading since there might be one underrepresented minority (URM, which makes a big difference in admissions) that goes from Irvine to Harvard Law, but at the same time 30 people will go from UCB to Harvard Law.</p>

<p>In summation, if you want to go to the absolute best Law Schools (top 10), then you'd probably be best off if you already have 3.8+ GPA and go to UCB. The lower ranked law school you go, the less undergraduate institution matters and the more focused on LSAT+GPA it gets. Unfortunately, once you get out of the T14, you really have to consider whether law school is worth it.</p>

<p>@darksaber
Thank you. This is really making my decision very difficult. I guess I have a lot of thinking to do. :-/</p>

<p>for pre-law, Berkeley is the best.</p>

<p>honestly, it sounds to me like you may be a little torn about leaving San Diego which is well understandable. however, I do believe you should not pass up an opportunity to attend Berkeley, especially for sociology. Unless money becomes a major, major factor, which I don't see possible because they are both UC's and you are a cali resident, I think you should DEFINITELY attend Berk. I will be heading to UC San Diego this fall myself so take my advice unbiased. </p>

<p>You worked really hard to get into Berk you should reward yourself by going there. For the rest of your life having Berkeley on your resume will really do a lot for you, albeit UCSD is not to shabby at all. </p>

<p>All in all, I think you should absolutely go to Berk and give it a try it will only be a couple years and it is a very short flight from home. If you really, really insist on being driving distance from home UCLA is amazing as is UCSD</p>

<p>... wrt UCLA and Cal. </p>

<p>The main thing is people keep referring to these five=year-old posts (+) and keep going back to the well and drawing on them as if they were relevant to now, or relevant to current-day posters/inquirers. </p>

<p>Your initial link only shows three law schools: HLS, YLS, UVa-Law. Both Cal and UCLA undoubtedly flood their own law schools, and I"m sure no. 2 on the list for each would be a switch of UCLA and Cal.</p>

<p>The WSJ survey that shows up maybe as a side link not necessarily a highlight of yours was done only once and, what, 7-10 years ago? Yet people keep referring to this survey. WSJ didn't continue it because it had numerous flaws. </p>

<p>One flaw wrt UCLA and Cal, was, it undershot the undergrads receiving diplomas from Cal. Both Cal and UCLA have > 7,000 undergrad diplomas/year, at least now they do, but yet it listed ~ 6,100 for Cal. Since the 6.1K would be used as a denominator in the %'s, this would artifically overstate the %'s for Cal.</p>

<p>There have been times where UCLA had more representation at HLS than Cal. It'd probably be ~ 50% of the time. HLS stopped producing this list, btw.</p>

<p>UCLA has ~ 20k bar-certified attys in CA; Cal has ~ 17K+. I'm sure both have excellent reprentations outside of CA, maybe Cal a bit more in some place like DC. </p>

<p>So, wrt future JD's, I don't think you can say for sure that Cal > UCLA. I would at least classify it as a deadheat, and maybe a shade towards UCLA because of Calbar representation.</p>

<p>Both have excellent pre-law communities.</p>

<p>"There have been times where UCLA had more representation at HLS than Cal. It'd probably be ~ 50% of the time. HLS stopped producing this list, btw"
-Do you have any proof of this? It might be archived online somewhere. That's how I found my info. I don't say this facetiously, i'm open to being convinced.</p>

<p>"UCLA has ~ 20k bar-certified attys in CA; Cal has ~ 17K+. I'm sure both have excellent reprentations outside of CA, maybe Cal a bit more in some place like DC."
-Are you talking about people from their undergrad or their law school?</p>

<p>I didn't include UCLA because it's not top-10; I qualified my earlier statements in saying that it mostly applies to top-10s. I didn't include Berkeley law because I couldn't find any info on it.</p>

<p>Just curious @drax12, but what undergrad did/do you attend and what law school did/do you attend?</p>

<p>A full ride should be a big deal when picking your school.
Law School will be very expensive and if you can save alot of money now it would be a great choice . Berkeley is half cool, half overrated .</p>

<p>You seriously need to visit Berkeley first if your thinking of going there, from the short amount of time I spend there I noticed this . UCB is one of the best schools in the world with tons of high achieving students from around the entire world . But if you walk, say 10 minutes off campus you will find your self in a strange intellectual ghetto full of homeless people and bits of Oakland that tend to flow into the college town . When I went there I found myself in a strange hood after just trying to walk around Berkeley a bit , without warning, one moment your in Berkeley the college town, the next moment your in Berkeley the low income neighborhood full of strange ghettoness . If this is your first time away from home it will be a very big adjustment . </p>

<p>It all depends on what you want to do, If I were you id go to UCSD since its cheaper and its close to home . UCLA's cool too and is further from the ghetto- LA has a hood, don't get me wrong, but you wont accidentally wander into it if your a UCLA student . Just because UCB sounds so amazing and is such a top school doesn't mean you'll like it there, invest a bit of money into visiting the school . It'll be well worth it since it will let you know if its right for you.</p>

<p>
[quote]
"There have been times where UCLA had more representation at HLS than Cal. It'd probably be ~ 50% of the time. HLS stopped producing this list, btw"</p>

<p>-Do you have any proof of this? It might be archived online somewhere. That's how I found my info. I don't say this facetiously, i'm open to being convinced.

[/quote]
</p>

<p>Overall, both would probably be about even throughout time. You could probably dredge up some links of those taking snapshots of UCLA and Cal's represntation which shows UCLA having more in a particular year; if I happen to run across some, I'll link. But it's always better to link to a legitimate site, say, the HLS site, rather than taking someone's word in creating the list... but HLS doesn't produce the list anymore, probably because people were using it against other schools. </p>

<p>And it isn't like Cal in the link you provided showing snapshot of 2006 or so has a lot more. Now, if you're talking the other Ivies, then sure they would have a good amount more reprentation than either Cal or UCLA, and you could say they have a good amt enrolled continually. </p>

<p>
[quote]
"UCLA has ~ 20k bar-certified attys in CA; Cal has ~ 17K+. I'm sure both have excellent reprentations outside of CA, maybe Cal a bit more in some place like DC."
-Are you talking about people from their undergrad or their law school?

[/quote]
</p>

<p>Undergrad...</p>

<p>I hate to post things more than once because I hate to repeat things more than a couple of times, but here's the link to Calbar membership.</p>

<p>
[quote]
I didn't include UCLA because it's not top-10; I qualified my earlier statements in saying that it mostly applies to top-10s. I didn't include Berkeley law because I couldn't find any info on it.

[/quote]
</p>

<p>I'm not sure to what you're referring. The listing of the three law schools? Not relevant or important, don't address this...</p>

<p>
[quote]
Just curious @drax12, but what undergrad did/do you attend and what law school did/do you attend?

[/quote]
</p>

<p>I'm just an independent observer, or at least I'm trying to be moreso. In other words, what I do for a living is not relevant to the conversation here; one of the tenants of these boards is never to ask another of his or her qualifications which could be nil. ;)</p>