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B.A. in Community Studies University of California, Santa Cruz


Course info



Founded in 1969, community studies was a national pioneer in the field of experiential education, and its community-focused learning model has been copied widely by other colleges and universities. Community studies was also a pioneer in addressing principles of social justice, specifically inequities arising from race, class, and gender dynamics in society.

The major offers students the opportunity to combine on- and off-campus learning. On campus, students complete topical courses and a core curriculum enabling them to identify, analyze, and help construct sites for social justice movements, nonprofit sector advocacy, public policy making, and social enterprise. Off campus, students spend six months participating in and analyzing the work of a social justice organization. This intensive immersion is a distinguishing feature of the community studies major.

With the guidance of faculty and staff advisers, community studies students pursue field studies related to the program’s focus on health justice and economic justice. Past placements have included community health clinics, food justice organizations, immigrant rights centers, homeless resource and support groups, queer and transgender organizations, civil rights advocates, legal clinics, labor unions, HIV/AIDS organizations, and housing rights advocates: all pursuing a social justice mission.

Careers: Community development; Affordable housing; Community organizing; Economics; Education; Journalism; Labor organizing; Law; Medicine; Mental health; Non-profit advocacy; Nursing; Public administration; Public health; Social entrepreneurship; Social work; Sociology; Urban planning.

Course options

Here are the different ways in which you can study B.A. in Community Studies.

Full Time (4 years)

Tuition fees

$11,442.00 (8,38,692) per year


03 Jan, 30 Mar


Division of Social Sciences

UC Santa Cruz,

1156 High Street,



95064, United States

Entry requirement for international students

Freshman applicants are students who have: Completed their secondary education and have earned a certificate of completion which enables them to be admitted to a university in their home country; Never been enrolled as a university student.

UC has slightly different admission requirements for applicants who are international students. If you're applying as a freshman, you must:

Complete 15 year-long academic courses with a 3.4 GPA: 2 years of history (in place of U.S. History, history of your country); 4 years of composition and literature in language in which you are instructed; 3 years (four years recommended) of college-preparatory mathematics that include the topics covered in elementary and advanced algebra and two- and three-dimensional geometry.* (Approved integrated math courses may be used to fulfill part or all of this requirement); 2 years of laboratory science (biology, chemistry, and/or physics) OR 2 years of integrated science; 2 years of a second language; 1 yearlong course (or 2 semesters) of visual and performing arts; 1 additional course from any subject areas above.

English-language Proficiency

Score 6.5 or higher on the International English Language Testing System (IELTS)

Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) examination:

Internet-based test (iBT): Minimum score of 80 or better

Paper-based test (completed prior to Oct. 2017): Minimum score of 550 or better

o Revised paper-delivered test (completed Oct. 2017 or later): Minimum score of 60 or better

* Please check with your chosen school for the exact entry requirements for your programme.

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