uSC: the university of southern California
a quick and easy guide to your success

USC, formally known as the University of Southern California, is one of the most frequently searched universities in the United States, according to a recent internet keyword search of American colleges. 

The college is a leading private research university located in Los Angeles, and well known for its arts programs.

Founded in 1880, the university currently maintains an enrollment of well over 45,000 students each semester, with more than half of them are studying at the post graduate level. 

The average undergraduate acceptance rate is currently 16-17%. The average student faculty ratio is about 9 to 1. 

USC offers numerous undergraduate majors, as well as many graduate degrees, and also a few PhD programs. 

Notable graduates of USC exemplify success. Prominent examples include astronaut Neil Armstrong, actor John Wayne, filmmaker George Lucas, Pulitzer Prize winning architect Frank Gehry, and many others. 

USC is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC)

Shown above: The entrance to the USC campus. 

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Here are the answers to some frequently asked questions about the University of Southern California.

1. Where is USC?

The main campus is located in the University Park section of Los Angeles, at the following address:  

University of Southern California

Los Angeles, California


The Health Science campus is located just 3 miles from downtown Los Angeles, and about 7 miles from the University Park campus. The mailing address of the Health Science campus is:  

University of Southern California

Health Sciences Campus

Los Angeles, California


Above: Students on campus


2. What is the organizational structure of USC?

The university is organized into the following 23 schools: 

  1. Academy for Arts, Technology, and the Business of Innovation 
  2. College of Letters and Sciences 
  3. College of Professional Studies 
  4. School of Accounting 
  5. School of Architecture 
  6. School of Art and Design 
  7. School of Business 
  8. School of Cinematic Arts 
  9. School for Communication and Journalism 
  10. School of Dance 
  11. School of Dentistry 
  12. School of Dramatic Arts 
  13. School of Education 
  14. School of Engineering 
  15. School of Gerontology 
  16. School of Law 
  17. School of Medicine 
  18. School of Music 
  19. School of Occupational Therapy 
  20. School of Pharmacy 
  21. School of Physical Therapy 
  22. School of Public Policy 
  23. School of Social Work 

3. What undergraduate studies are offered at USC?

Undergraduate course offerings here cover a wide range of topics.

Here is an exhaustive list of the many undergraduate majors available

  • Accounting 
  • Acting 
  • Aerospace Engineering 
  • American Pop Culture 
  • American Studies and Ethnicity  
  • Animation 
  • Anthropology 
  • Applied Mathematics 
  • Applied Mechanics 
  • Archeology 
  • Architecture 
  • Art 
  • Art History 
  • Arts, Technology, and the Business of Innovation 
  • Astronautical Engineering 
  • Astronomy 
  • Biochemistry 
  • Biological Sciences 
  • Biomedical Engineering 
  • Biophysics 
  • Business Administration 
  • Central European Studies 
  • Chemical Engineering 
  • Chemistry 
  • Choral Music 
  • Cinema and Media Studies 
  • Cinematic Arts, Film, and TV Production 
  • Civil Engineering 
  • Classics 
  • Cognitive Science 
  • Communication 
  • Comparative Literature 
  • Composition 
  • Computational Linguistics 
  • Computational Neuroscience 
  • Computer Engineering 
  • Computer Science 
  • Dance 
  • Data Science 
  • Dental Hygiene 
  • Design 
  • Earth Sciences 
  • East Asian Studies 
  • Economics 
  • Electrical Engineering 
  • English 
  • Environmental Engineering 
  • Environmental Science and Health 
  • Environmental Studies 
  • Fine Arts 
  • French 
  • Gender Studies 
  • Geodesign
  • Geological Sciences 
  • Global Studies 
  • Health 
  • History 
  • Human Biology 
  • Human Development 
  • Industrial Engineering 
  • Intelligence and Cyber Operations 
  • Interactive Entertainment 
  • International Relations 
  • Italian 
  • Jazz 
  • Jewish Studies 
  • Journalism 
  • Latino Studies 
  • Law, History, and Culture 
  • Lifespan Health 
  • Linguistics 
  • Mathematics 
  • Mechanical Engineering 
  • Media Arts 
  • Middle East Studies 
  • Music 
  • Music Industry 
  • Musical Production
  • Musical Theater 
  • Narrative Studies 
  • Neuroscience 
  • Non Governmental Organizations 
  • Occupational Therapy 
  • Performance Arts 
  • Pharmacology and Drug Development 
  • Philosophy 
  • Physical Sciences 
  • Physics 
  • Political Science 
  • Psychology 
  • Public Policy 
  • Public Realtions 
  • Quantitative Biology 
  • Real Estate Development 
  • Religion 
  • Russian
  • Social Sciences
  • Sociology 
  • Spanish 
  • Theater 
  • Urban Studies 
  • Visual Arts 
  • Writing 

Above: On-campus student housing 


4. What graduate programs are available at USC?

Students attending the graduate college can earn Masters degrees from any of the above-mentioned schools. 

Here's a partial list of the PhD programs offered at USC:

  • American Studies and Ethnicity 
  • Anthropology 
  • Applied Mathematics 
  • Architecture 
  • Art History 
  • Astronautical Engineering 
  • Biokinesiology 
  • Biological Sciences 
  • Biology of Aging 
  • Biomedical Engineering 
  • Biostatistics 
  • Business Administration 
  • Cancer Biology  
  • Chemical Engineering 
  • Chemistry 
  • Cinema and Media Studies 
  • Cinematic Arts 
  • Civil Engineering 
  • Classics 
  • Communication 
  • Comparative Literature 
  • Computational Biology 
  • Computer Engineering 
  • Computer Science 
  • Craniofacial Biology 
  • Creative Writing 
  • East Asian Languages 
  • Economics 
  • Electrical Engineering 
  • English and American Literature 
  • Epidemiology 
  • Geological Sciences 
  • Gerontology 
  • History 
  • Industrial Engineering 
  • Law 
  • Linguistics 
  • Marine Biology 
  • Materials Science 
  • Medical Biology 
  • Medicine 
  • Molecular Biology 
  • Molecular Structure 
  • Music 
  • Neuroscience 
  • Occupational Science 
  • Ocean Sciences 
  • Petroleum Engineering 
  • Pharmaceutical Sciences 
  • Philosophy 
  • Physics 
  • Political Science and International Relations 
  • Preventive Medicine 
  • Psychology 
  • Religion 
  • Slavic Languages 
  • Social Work 
  • Sociology 
  • Therapeutics 
  • Urban Education 
  • Urban Planning  

Above: A fancy USC dorm room


4. What programs are available at the USC Gould School of Law?

Here is a partial list of law courses for the upcoming semester at USC's Gould School of Law: 

  • Accounting for Lawyers 
  • Bankruptcy Law 
  • Bioethics 
  • Business Organizations 
  • Business Planning 
  • Clause Drsfting 
  • Community Property 
  • Constitutional Innovation 
  • Contract Drafting
  • Cross Cultural Dispute Resolution 
  • Counterterrorism 
  • Criminal Law 
  • Ethics 
  • Gender Law 
  • Immigration 
  • International Negotiation 
  • Law and Policy 
  • Legal Writing 
  • Mediation and Arbitration 
  • Mental Health Law 
  • Real Estate Law 
  • Taxation Law 
  • Transactional Law 

The Bar Pass rate for graduates of the Gould law school is about 78%. 

Above: The USC School of Law


6. How much does it cost to attend USC?

According to the school website, the estimated current cost of tuition, fees, housing, and other expenses for admission to the college in the upcoming school year is as follows: 

For Undergraduate and Graduate school students: Roughly $29,000 per semester, or $1,928 per unit 

The Law School tuition is approximately $33,000 per semester, or 2,564$ per unit. 

The College of Dentistry costs roughly $33,000 per semester. 

Other fees may also apply, such as application fees, registration fees, parking fees, technology fees, and others. 

Financial aid is available to many incoming and continuing students who fill out the FAFSA form. Aid may come in the form of grants, loans, scholarships, work study programs, or private donations. 

Most undergraduate students at USC do NOT have to pay the full cost of tuition. 

7. What is the USC campus like?

The main campus occupies nearly 300 acres in the urban setting of one of America's best college towns. The nearby Health Sciences campus spans about another 80 acres. 

The campus contains at many historic buildings, including five libraries and quite a few housing complexes. In fact, USC features an entire housing village. 

Campus landmarks and attractions include the Fisher Museum of Art, the Los Angeles Natural History Museum, the California African American Museum, and the Shrine Auditorium, among others. The campus grounds are adorned with sculptures, fountains, and a time-honored blend of architectural styles. 

Surrounding the USC campus is the charming University Park district, featuring many shops, eateries, and conveniences. Public transportation is readily available. 

The school colors are cardinal and gold. The varsity athletes here are called the Trojans. They play for the NCAA Division 1 - Pac-12 Conference. 

Intercollegiate sports for men and women on campus include:  

  • Baseball
  • Basketball
  • Beach Volleyball 
  • Cross Country 
  • Football
  • Golf 
  • Lacrosse
  • Rowing
  • Soccer 
  • Swimming (& Diving)
  • Tennis 
  • Track & Field
  • Volleyball
  • Water Polo

Also available on campus are more than a few club and intramural sports, such as some of the ones listed above, as well as aerobics, badminton, dance, and many more.  

Aside form athletics, the school also features more than a thousand on-campus undergraduate student organizations, spanning a wide variety of interests. Student activity groups include an African Arts club, a Christian fellowship, a campus magazine, a cooking club, a karate club, a theater ensemble, a film society, a radio station, and a school newspaper, to name only a few. 

Above: The Trojans


Above: USC campus map


8. What are the distance learning options at USC?

USC offers a range of distance learning opportunities. Here's a list of some of the upcoming online classes available:  

  • Africa
  • Applied Psychology 
  • Architecture 
  • Asia 
  • Bioinformatics 
  • Biological Sciences 
  • Business Accounting and Economics 
  • Chemistry 
  • Cinematic Arts 
  • Citation 
  • Communication & Journalism 
  • Cultural & Ethnic Studies 
  • Dentistry 
  • Earth Sciences 
  • Education 
  • Engineering 
  • Gender Studies 
  • Geography 
  • Health Sciences 
  • History 
  • Holocaust Studies 
  • Information Science 
  • Language and Literature 
  • Latin America 
  • Los Angeles 
  • Mathematics 
  • Medicine 
  • Middle East 
  • Music 
  • Nursing 
  • Occupational Therapy 
  • Performing Arts 
  • Pharmacy 
  • Physical Therapy 
  • Political Science 
  • Psychology 
  • Public Health 
  • Social Work 
  • Sociology and Anthropology 
  • Special Collections 
  • Statistics 
  • United States and Canada 
  • Visions and Voices 

Click here to learn about More Than 50 Top Ranked Online Colleges.

9. What is the contact information for USC?

To reach the main campus, or for general information, call 213-740-2311

To reach the Health Sciences Campus, call 310-825-4321

For undergraduate admissions, call 213-740-1741 or 213-740-1111. 

Above: Map of University Park, Los Angeles

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