University of Southern California
About University of Southern California
Located in Los Angeles, California, the University of Southern California is a private, not-for-profit school that offers more than 400 graduate and professional programs in areas such as medicine, law, engineering, and the social sciences. As a research university, it holds the Carnegie classification of “Highest Research Activity” for Doctoral Universities. It offers degrees on campus, online, and in hybrid formats.
During fall 2016, University of Southern California graduate programs utilized 1,931 total graduate assistants—677 in teaching and 1,254 in research-related activities.i For graduate students who want to develop their knowledge and skillset at a world-renowned research university, the USC campus might prove to be a great option.
Why Consider the University of Southern California?
Besides the fact that USC is a topnotch research institute, there are many great reasons to consider attending the University of Southern California campus in Los Angeles. The 15-acre student learning and living complex exists in the heart of Los Angeles, a global center for technology, international business, and the arts. Plus, USC leadership and academic, social, and recreational programming helps provide a culturally rich and dynamic learning environment.
Here are some other great reasons to consider USC:
USC’s Research Projects
As a research institute, USC provides a steady stream of ideas, innovations, and new technologies, art, and knowledge to the global community. It has nearly $700 million in annual research expenditures and has a large graduate program in science, engineering, and health, where many of its projects live. An Office of Research, research centers, labs and research services, clinical trials, and programs for managing grants and contracts all make research at USC a worthwhile endeavor.
The USC Ranking
U.S. News ranked the University of Southern California #21 (tie) in National Universities. The school ranked #5 (tie) in Best Colleges for Veterans and # 15 (tie) in Most Innovative Schools. At the graduate level, University of Southern California majors ranked #1 in Physical Therapy, #3 in Occupational Therapy, #4 in Public Affairs, #9 in Pharmacy, and #12 in Social Work. USC ranked #11 in Best Engineering Schools, #15 in Best Education Schools, #19 in Best Law Schools, and #24 in Best Business Schools. These high rankings are just some of many.
USC Distinguished Faculty
USC’s distinguished faculty consists of 4,000 innovative scholars, teachers, researchers, and mentors, five of whom are Nobel laureates. Dozens of other faculty members have received national honors such as the:
- MacArthur “Genius” Award
- Guggenheim Award
- National Medal of the Arts
- National Humanities Medal
- National Medal of Science
- National Medal of Technology and Innovation
- Pulitzer Prize
And, of USC’s 4,069 full-time faculty members, nearly half conduct research in addition to working as instructors.i
Dual Degrees and Progressive Master’s Degree Programs
Numerous graduate programs partner with other graduate programs to offer dual degrees, or degree programs that enable students to earn two degrees at once. Some students opt to earn two complimentary master’s degrees at once, while others opt to earn a master’s degree and a doctorate degree at once. Dual degree programs enable students to pursue more education in less time and in complimentary subjects. Similarly, progressive master’s degree programs enable undergraduate students to begin pursuing their master’s degree while still earning their bachelor’s degrees.
The University of California Los Angeles campus is located in the heart of the city’s Downtown Arts and Education Corridor. This culturally thriving area gives students access to some of Los Angeles’ most beautiful and historical spots. Even on campus, students have access to classic architecture, museums, cafes, entertainment, and park-like grounds. Plus, the campus hosts a range of activities for the city, such as festivals, plays, sports events, and more.
Mission, Vision and Values
Overall, the University of Southern California devotes itself to the development of human beings and society through the cultivation and enrichment of the human mind and spirit. The school primarily embraces teaching, research, artistic creation, professional practice, and public service to fulfill its mission.
Admissions:The University of Southern California admission requirements differ for each graduate-level program. Therefore, prior to submitting your application to USC graduate school, you should read your program’s requirements carefully. In general, however, you will have to submit the following items to apply:
- An online application
- GRE/GMAT or other test scores
- A resume or curriculum vitae
- Letters of recommendation
- Supplemental materials (such as a statement of purpose or writing sample
- An application fee of anywhere from $90-$175
Enrollment, Attendance, Retention Rates and Graduation
Graduate attendance rate of 22% part-time and 78% full-time
For the years 2018-2019 University of Southern California awarded: 5166 bachelor's degrees, 9216 master's degrees, 1476 post-master's certificates, 73 doctor's degrees, 936 doctor's degrees - professional practice, 850 doctor's degrees - research/scholarship
Accreditation is a process conducted by independent agencies to helps ensure that schools’ programs and curricula meet acceptable levels of quality set by the U.S. Department of Education. USC Los Angeles has institutional accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges, Senior College and University Commission. It also has specialized or programmatic accreditation from:
- The Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education
- The American Bar Association, Council of the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar
- The American Dental Association, Commission on Dental Accreditation
- The American Occupational Therapy Association, Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education
- The Council on Education for Public Health
- The Liaison Committee on Medical Education
- The Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational Programs
These are just some of USC’s programmatic accreditation. Once you’ve found the program of your choice, you can inquire with the program directly to discern whether or not it is accredited.
More than 400 USC graduate programs serve a diverse community of scholars through several schools: The Keck School of Medicine; the Dornsife College of Letters, Arts, and Sciences; the USC Viterbi School of Engineering; and others. Dedicated to research and advancing knowledge in their fields, faculty across disciplines help graduate students pursue master’s degrees, doctorate degrees, and graduate certificates. The USC graduate school offers options for dual degrees and progressive master’s degrees.
University of Southern California Graduate Programs Highlight: the Master of Social Work
During the 2016-2017 school year, 1,472 students at USC earned a master’s degree in social work, making it one of the most popular USC majors at the graduate-level. Offered through the Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work, USC’s Master of Social Work is offered on campus or online. It helps students pursue careers as clinical social workers and to develop their knowledge of policy practice, advocacy, and program administration. The Master of Social Work offers several tracks:
- Adult Mental Health and Wellness
- Children, Youth, and Families
- Social Change and Innovation
- Military Social Work
In addition, MSW students can opt to earn a dual-degree by pursing one of the following degrees in addition to the MSW: a Juris Doctorate (J.D.); a Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.); a Master of Science in Gerontology; a Master of Arts in Jewish Nonprofit Management; a Master of Public Administration; a Master of Public Health; or a Doctor of Philosophy in Social Work.
In their programs, students explore issues, populations, and ideas in areas such as social change, spirituality, juvenile justice, mental health, school social work, leadership, and the military.