The Student Room Group

LSE vs UCLA as an international

Got into UCLA for Econ and LSE for Philosophy and Economics, need help deciding where to go. Don't have much time, because UCLA's deposit deadline is May 1st and I got my LSE offer today -_-

So far, I've come up with the pros and cons:

UCLA:
Pros: better campus and weather, best food according to US News, more flexibility on changing majors (can double major, minor), more extracurricular fun stuff/more of a community feel I think + being in LA, guaranteed four years housing
Cons: don't know anyone in California, probably less reputable than LSE, four years instead of three, probably as expensive as London, not sure about immigration in USA vs UK

LSE:
Pros: Well reputed for Econ-related courses, three years, UK immigration now lets you spend two years after graduating finding a job, being in London is good for networking, have friends in London and close family a train ride away
Cons: lack of flexibility/can't change/double major, very expensive living costs, a lack of "community feel" I'm told, worse weather, heard dorms are not very good

What do you guys think?
(edited 1 year ago)
Original post by Avgstudent123
Got into UCLA for Econ and LSE for Philosophy and Economics, need help deciding where to go. Don't have much time, because UCLA's deposit deadline is May 1st and I got my LSE offer today -_-

So far, I've come up with the pros and cons:

UCLA:
Pros: better campus and weather, best food according to US News, more flexibility on changing majors (can double major, minor), more extracurricular fun stuff/more of a community feel I think + being in LA, guaranteed four years housing
Cons: don't know anyone in California, probably less reputable than LSE, four years instead of three, probably as expensive as London, not sure about immigration in USA vs UK

LSE:
Pros: Well reputed for Econ-related courses, three years, UK immigration now lets you spend two years after graduating finding a job, being in London is good for networking, have friends in London and close family a train ride away
Cons: lack of flexibility/can't change/double major, very expensive living costs, a lack of "community feel" I'm told, worse weather, heard dorms are not very good

What do you guys think?

Firstly, congrats on the two outstanding offers. I went to LSE and am doing my master's there so I have bias, but may be able to answer some questions on it as a result. I think the main question is where do you want to work and live after graduation? US means go to UCLA, UK means go to LSE, as simple as that. If you don't know where you want to live/work after uni then it becomes a bit more difficult
Original post by BenRyan99
Firstly, congrats on the two outstanding offers. I went to LSE and am doing my master's there so I have bias, but may be able to answer some questions on it as a result. I think the main question is where do you want to work and live after graduation? US means go to UCLA, UK means go to LSE, as simple as that. If you don't know where you want to live/work after uni then it becomes a bit more difficult


Thanks. Yes, I am a bit unsure about US vs UK, because as an international, immigration and finding a job is a big factor. The UK gives you two years after graduating to find a job now, but US salaries are much higher. + If I do go to LSE and still want to go to the US, I could do a master's in America and then get a job there; has anyone you know in LSE done this?

I'm also worried about the atmosphere at LSE: I'm told there is pretty much no "community" feeling and students are generally overworked: is this true?
(edited 1 year ago)
Original post by Avgstudent123
Thanks. Yes, I am a bit unsure about US vs UK, because as an international, immigration and finding a job is a big factor. The UK gives you two years after graduating to find a job now, but US salaries are much higher. + If I do go to LSE and still want to go to the US, I could do a master's in America and then get a job there; has anyone you know in LSE done this?

I'm also worried about the atmosphere at LSE: I'm told there is pretty much no "community" feeling and students are generally overworked: is this true?

Does being a US grad not have any visa implications like it does in the UK? Would've assumed there's some sort of visa for US uni grads. People have definitely gone from LSE to US unis for a master's. But I doubt an undergrad in that LSE course would be seen as more attractive than Econ from UCLA. I still think it holds that if even a part of you wants to do a master's or to work in the US, then it's definitely better to do your undergrad there.

LSE does have a somewhat competitive atmosphere as people seem to unfortunately base a proportion of their self-worth on the status of their investment bank summer internship applications, even more so than their actual course grades 😅. Issue with LSE is that it's a city uni so doesn't really have a campus and accommodation blocks aren't all together which stifles the community spirit. I mean I had a good time there so it's definitely possible but the quality of life is definitely worse than many other UK unis imo.
Reply 4
Getting into LSE is much harder, and for economics subjects, LSE is one of the best in the world. Dont think twice, choose LSE.

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