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Overall School Rating
39 Ratings

4 out of 5 Stars

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2 Stars
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39 Student Reviews

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“Good school”
December 2018CURRENT STUDENT
Uppers

The low cost to attend the school and the education.

Downers

The lectures and too many people at the school in my opinion.

Comments

There are many events you can attend and there are a lot of buildings around campus.

Would You Recommend

Yes

“Grad”
August 2015FORMER STUDENT
Uppers

Best Professors

Great Classes

Doable Campus

Comfortable Classrooms

Nice Students

Downers

Large Classes

Bad Facilities

Bad Food

Bad Sports

Bad Attitudes

Comments

Great bang for your buck. Great med school and dental school.

Would You Recommend

Yes

2011VERIFIED STUDENT
Academics

Academic advising is great. It is personal and staff is very friendly. General requirements include your career track classes as well as DEC's (Diversified Education Curriculum) classes. Class sizes are 100-600 for lecture classes (25% of classes are lecture classes) and 40 students or less for the rest of the 75% of the classes. Professors are easily accessible via Blackboard, Office Hours, and email. Research opportunities are plentiful and available to even freshmen. Study abroad opportunities are great and affordable. The tuition cost is the same to study abroad. The only extra costs are travel and personal expenses.

Quality of Life

Housing is affordable, convenient, and fun. Rooms are big. The campus is beautiful. The facilities are clean, open long, and easily accessible. The library is beautiful and has many resources. Dining is great, I love the food on campus. The neighborhood is extremely safe and beautiful. The only crimes are crimes of opportunity (a laptop left alone at a dining hall gets stolen). I am EXTREMELY HAPPY with Stony Brook University. It has been the best time of my life.

Admissions

There is no early action or early decision. All students must apply via common application or Stony Brook University application. Financial Aid is available, as well as academic scholarships and other aid.

Level

2

Graduation Year

2014

2011VERIFIED STUDENT
Academics

Intro Science classes might be huge but plenty of resources and helps available for students who want to do well.

Quality of Life

The cost is reasonable. Friendly neighborhood and beautiful campus. It's all upto you how you can take advantage of this campus.

Admissions

Stony Brook doesn't interview students but few might get asked to be interviewed. My essay questions were describe someone who influenced you.

Level

2

Graduation Year

2014

2011VERIFIED STUDENT
Academics

We have a Diversified Education Curriculum which serves as a general education program. There are a multitude of research opportunities in which you can gain hands-on experience.

Quality of Life

The residence halls on campus are constantly being updated. There is always something to do on campus; clubs, organizations, activities, and leadership opportunities.

Admissions

There is a Common Application for all of the SUNY institutions. Included with this application there is an essay

Level

5

Graduation Year

2012

2011VERIFIED STUDENT
Academics

General requirements to be fulfilled. Pre/ co-requisites required for many courses in specific majors. Average class size is approximately 40 and decreases as the level of difficulty o the course increases. Most first year courses are in lecture style setting consisting of 100+ students.

Quality of Life

Decent housing, affordable cost of living. Beautiful, large campus. Lots of resources available. Safe and secured school. Students give off a positive vibe.

Admissions

Same SUNY application process. No early decision/ early action available. Common Application and SUNY Application both apply.

Level

2

Graduation Year

2014

2011VERIFIED STUDENT
Academics

We have to complete the Diversified Education Curriculum as the core requirement. The pre-medical coursework is not a major by itself, but completed along side the major coursework. It is difficult because the class sizes are large and the exams can be tough as well. However, there are online quizzes that can help you learn the material. There are also echo360 recordings for the large lecture science classes which make reviewing for the classes more feasible. There are many research opportunities on and off campus, but you have to look for them. The study abroad programs are amazing.

Quality of Life

Everything is expensive, but campus life is pretty nice. I love meeting new people and being able to stay out late on campus. This allows me to take part in more club and organization activities. I am also about to be a part of the residential hall council as well. I've never felt unsafe on campus, but I know the RSP service is very good - I've walked with them once and they are friendly and keep you awake while walking back to your dorm. The life is great, but you have to be careful not to let the plethora of student clubs and fun activities take all of your time; make sure you study.

Admissions

I followed the Common Application and submitted a supplementary essay.

Level

3

Graduation Year

2013

2011VERIFIED STUDENT
Academics

The school atmosphere is highly competitive, professors are available to students and respond to emails rather quickly. However incoming students must be aware that a syllabus is somewhat of a contract and that by staying enrolled in a class you are agreeing to the grading and attendance policies. Also some professors give their Teaching Assistants the opportunity to grade papers and procotor exams which has its pros and cons.

Quality of Life

The library is a great resource on campus, it has a wide range of texts and papers to use. The dining facilities are okay however they can be greatly improved. The campus has a safe feeling overall, even though "bigger" schools can sometimes be intimidating and have a stigma attached to them that they are "unsafe".

Admissions

The admissions process includes an optional essay and intensive application process

Level

5

Graduation Year

2012

2011VERIFIED STUDENT
Academics

The academics at Stony Brook University can be simply described in one word: challenging. If the school is just a safe school that you figured would be enough to help you land a job, you are partly correct, but mostly wrong. This school boasts the greatest research opportunities of all public schools in the area and the SUNY school system. That means that the professors, themselves, are researchers who currently conduct research methods on several issues. Not only does this university have the necessary research opportunities, but the facilities for research are available, both on campus within the labs of professors, and off-campus at well-renowned research sites like Brookhaven National Laboratory and Coldspring Harbor Laboratory. In addition, the university has its own hospital within the larger part of its campus allowing for interactions with physicians and a chance to improve medical school resumes with research and volunteering.

Besides the research aspects, students can find that the school is varied academically in its interests to cater to every student. From the famous journalism school set up at Stony Brook to the cutting-edge field of biomedical engineering (which I am a part of), the school thrives in various majors although the sciences and engineering seem to the typical stereotype for this university. The general requirements offered at this university help students detach themselves from their major coursework and point of view to help them diversify themselves and learn more about the humanities.

Larger classes have plenty of students (almost 500 at one time!) with one or two professors, each of whom divides the teaching job to half the semester. These professors can be helpful and demand complete focus and attention. Office hours for them are available but a certain note should be taken into account: they have higher expectations for each student than those professors who teach smaller classes, and will not remember your face unless you are constantly seeing them for help. The smaller classes have students that range anywhere from 20 - 70 people. Medium ranged classes can be from 70 - 150+. All the professors I have encountered are brilliant men and women whose database of mental knowledge is unfathomable. However, since most of them do conduct research and constantly have the profession of teaching mixed with this research job, they do not have a lot of time and effort to teach effectively. They also tend to expect students to know a lot of information and will not cater enough to the student due to a lack of time, the number of students in class, etc. Therefore, office hours and contacting teacher assistants (TAs) are essential. Teachers such as Professor Cabot and Professor Collins for BIO 203 can require a lot of work in studying for this biology class on anatomy and physiology. However, their approach requires students to motivate themselves and study; when questions arise, they are available. I have been privileged to take a class with arguably the best teacher at Stony Brook University, Prof. Michael Hadjiargyrou. His level of expertise and enthusiasm when it comes to teaching Genetic Engineering is just incredibly interesting (a biomedical engineering class called BME 304).

Grading, the one idea that everyone is curious about when they search for colleges. This is all that needs to be said about Stony Brook when one decides whether they want to come here or not : An "A" that is earned in Stony Brook is one that was well-deserved. Therefore, managing to acquire an "A" in each course is not really a breeze like it was in high school. You must study consistently to refresh topics in your mind and prepare yourself for exams well ahead of the deadline or test date. However, every course can be taken with acquiring the necessary grade desired; hard work and persistence needs to be present. That is where competitiveness becomes a factor and can be tough in the science and engineering departments. If one is not within a considerable high range of the class in grades, the average curve for grading can work against one's favor.

The opportunities for students to reach outside this campus are numerous. Students have traveled to Europe, South America, Asia, etc. Many have visited for a purpose to seek a new learning experience outside of this country. Others find the solace of a home like Stony Brook somewhere else where culture and academics mingle softly enough for a thorough understanding of the lifestyles presented by that location. Whatever the cause or reason may be, study abroad opportunities are just as available as anything else on campus.

Academic advising at this school can be disorganized at times. However, there are professionals who are ready to help you continue your courses and stay on track to graduate in time. The choice is yours to contact them when troubles arise or uncertainty in taking/dropping a class is present. If a student is registered to a major, he or she will also have an academic adviser from their major who will assist them in finding classes, research opportunities, etc. The Career Center in Stony Brook helps students find internships and jobs for all students who require the need for advising and help.

Quality of Life

The quality of life at Stony Brook is about what you are paying to attend this university. In essence, total tuition costs around 16-17K in dollars. For a public institution that boasts a world-class education, decent housing, wide choice of foods to eat, recreational facilities, and several more, the cost of attendance is well worth your money. Housing alone cost around $11,000. Incoming freshman are required to stick to the meal plan offered by the university through a tier system, that cost $1000+ for a whole semester; points are accumulated on your student ID card and used when food items are bought from dining areas. Each quad or living area on campus has some type of dining hall that offers different types of food i.e. Kelly Quad offers foods of Mexican, Italian, and American cuisine along with a Fish Market station and an eco-friendly (vegetarian) section to appeal to particular customers; Roth Quad has Wendy's; Tabler Quad has Dunkin Donuts; the Union has Starbucks. A special center on campus called the Wang Center specializes in almost authentic Asian food (Indian, Korean, Chinese, Japanese, etc). Dining on campus may become boring after a while. Therefore, the town of Stony Brook offers several name brand stores within less than 1-mile radius of the school, everything from Taco Bell to Friendly's. A local mall (the Smithhaven Mall) is quite impressive to shop for goods and clothing while an AMC theater stands next to the shopping center for a source of entertainment.

Studying for school can also be done at the library. The library has loads of information waiting to be explored. It provides an area that some find their home until the closing hours of the building. Several computers line the SINC sites where paper documents can be printed out for classes, printing jobs are done with a certain quota of papers allowed to be printed and allotted to each student attending SBU, and where surfing the Internet for research, entertainment, social networking, etc are available. The library has one SINC site, two reading rooms with computers and several study tables, quiet rooms as well as booths for group work/tasks, a separate music library, a bookstore on the bottom floor, and a commuter lounge to accommodate commuters. It can be overcrowded from Mondays-Wednesdays but Thursdays until the end of the weekends are usually lonely.

The community around which SBU has been placed allows students to travel from one side of campus to the other in about 15 minutes. The town itself is very calm, clean, and homely. Very little crime, if not anything at all, occurs at Stony Brook. The safety of students are considered at great length that new measures at taken to help prevent crime. The one aspect students will find interesting is the RSP system. It consists of Stony Brook students who work at night to provide guardian-like services. If you are alone at night and want to walk from one quad to the next but feel afraid to walk outside in the dark alone, RSP can be called and two dispatchers will come along to escort you to your desired location. In this respect, SBU does look out for the safety of its respective students.

Admissions

Stony Brook is a selective school. Even for a SUNY school, Stony Brook University boasts the best among the other SUNY schools as it is ranked in the top 100 schools across the nation. Stony Brook's application can be done through the Common Application, which requires the usual details about one's academic career as well as a few personal essays. These essays were a part of the supplemental application that accompanied the Common Application. it required some essays in addition to a few more lengthier essays if one considered applying for a special Honors program or other deserving academic titles. Since I had pursued the college through the Early Action decision, I was able to know about my admission sooner rather than later. The regular decision seems to be quite tough as only about 40% are accepted with rolling admission. Scholarships are also plenty when they are applied for on a early basis as well as for need-based/merit scholarships.

Overall, the application process would be rated by myself as medium. It is not a easy school to be accepted into as an incoming freshman but at the same time, does not reject its students outright. The diverse elements to the application process is just a testament to how balanced the student body is here at Stony Brook University.

Level

3

Graduation Year

2013

2011VERIFIED STUDENT
Academics

I have little experience with general requirements, called DECs (Diversified Education Curriculum), as I am exempt from nearly all of them as an Honors College student. My impressions from other non Honors students is that they sometimes encourage students to broaden their horizons and give them an opportunity to learn about something interesting outside of their major, but more often than not, they are just tedious and a bit annoying, as the list of requirements is quite long. Some DECs can be replaced by AP credits, but many cannot.

Academic advising is, in my experience, very poor. Some resources are available but they are not well advertised and make very little effort to reach out to students--if you want help, you have to search for it. My experience with the advisors within my major has been quite good--they are generally responsive, concerned and quite helpful--but I'm not sure whether this is true across the board.

Class sizes, class quality, and the accessibility of professors all vary greatly across the board, depending on the course, its popularity, and the professor. In large lectures, which may have upwards of 500 students, a respectable effort is made to provide more personalized attention in recitation sections, which are held weekly and conducted by graduate students. In smaller classes, professors tend to be much more approachable and most make an effort to connect with students. There are a wealth of opportunities for students to get involved with research, and contacting professors is the best way to do so.

Grading also varies from one class to another, but I have found that most teachers will curve the class at the end of a semester. I have never felt a grade was unfair, but many of my classes have been challenging, and these are the ones I find most fulfilling. The workload is usually very doable, but easily adjusted based on a student's credit load for the semester.

Finally, study abroad opportunities are abundant and encouraged, and the International Academic Programs office staff are quite friendly and helpful. For many programs, financial aid can be applied toward international study and tuition is paid to SBU, so it is an opportunity accessible to many students.

Quality of Life

Housing facilities are generally quite nice and are well maintained--those that are not are usually the older dorm buildings. The recent construction of a large new housing complex has eased the space constraints and significantly lowered the number of students who are tripled in double rooms. The campus is expansive and somewhat divided according to quad--in my opinion, each residential quad seems to have a characteristic demographic that remains fairly constant. Recreational facilities are limited--the residential fitness centers are very small and have limited hours.

The food provided by campus dining usually ranges from satisfactory to excellent, with some of the highlights being fresh sushi and a Starbucks on campus. The prices are high, but having a meal plan exempts students from paying tax on food. All of the dining halls are food court style, and food is purchased a la carte--there are no all-you-can-eat locations. Limited hours in some locations can be frustrating, as can the distance between the various parts of campus, particularly in the winter. However, overall, I think that the dining program rates better at Stony Brook than a majority of other schools.

Campus life tends to dwindle on the weekends--many students commute or go home from Friday to Sunday, so things can be kind of dead. However, those who remain tend to form a network within their residential quads for socializing. There is very little crime on campus, and I have never felt unsafe. There are many programs in place to protect students, including the blue-light phones, ride program, and Resident Safety Patrol, and there is a fairly strong police presence on campus. Police never harass students--they generally only interfere to prevent vandalism. There is also a strong drug and alcohol presence on campus, but while accessibility is very high, peer pressure is generally low. Substances are readily available to those who seek them, but it is not necessarily and expectation or a requirement.

The overall happiness of students is generally low, which contrasts with my own personal feelings. I like my university very much, but I admit that there is a strong sense of student apathy about student government, recreational programs, and the college experience in general. Many people seem to be unsatisfied with what the university offers them, but unmotivated to promote any changes.

Admissions

The regular application process utilizes the Common Application and requires one personal statement and two letters of recommendation. The application for the Honors College is the same, but with one additional essay. There is currently no early action/early decision program in place, and, to my knowledge, no interviews are conducted.

Financial aid is determined according to the FAFSA, which all students must complete, and all accepted students are automatically considered for a panel of university scholarships. There is a small selection of additional scholarship opportunities with specific qualification criteria--information and applications for these are available on the financial aid website.

Level

3

Graduation Year

2013

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Uppers Downers Comments Would You Recommend

Academics Quality of Life Admissions Level Graduation Year