January in Los Angeles, California at UCLA

  • Santa Monica Pier California
  • January in Los Angeles CA
  • Los Angeles skyline cityscape
Spend six weeks this summer studying at UCLA Extension – in vibrant Los Angeles (LA), California. Enjoy a beautiful, global campus with state-of-the- art amenities, including multiple gyms, pools, libraries, cafes and restaurants – all surrounded by LA’s most iconic neighbourhoods.

As a CISaustralia student you will be attending UCLA Extension on a program exclusive to CISaustralia and designed in coordination with UCLA Extension for Australian students. Students can choose from a set of pre-defined courses relating to Marketing, Sociology, Entertainment, Entrepreneurship, Design and Leadership. Courses are normally scheduled to take place Monday through Friday, though students should be aware that classes are subject to the professor’s availability. As such, there may be some classes held on a Saturday. Students should also obtain pre-approval from the Australian University for at least three – ideally four – courses prior to departure. 

In 2013–2014, UCLA ranked 12th in academics and 8th for reputation in the Times Higher Education World University Rankings. In 2013, Business Insider ranked UCLA as having the most driven students in the world, boosting the school's prestige with respect to recruiting and hiring. 

The university is one of America’s oldest, largest and most comprehensive continuing higher education providers. It boasts of Emmy-, Grammy-, and Oscar-nominated alumni, including Iris Yamashita, who was nominated for a Best Original Screenplay Academy Award for Letters from Iwo Jima. Other notable alumni include James Franco, Marilyn Monroe, Gavin Hood (Academy Award winner for Best Foreign Film – Tsotsi) and Randi Mayem Singer, who wrote the screenplay for Mrs. Doubtfire

As this program has been designed exclusively for CISaustralia, it is likely that most students in the classes will be Australian; however, UCLA Extension will open class enrolment to US and international students, pending class numbers. CISaustralia and UCLA Extension will organise a formal orientation for the first week of classes and an informal social event to ensure that CISaustralia students will have the chance to meet their class colleagues. There will also be a guest lecture and networking event with other UCLA Extension students. 

UCLA Extension and CISaustralia strongly recommend that students bring their own laptops, as students will not have access to computer labs.

Academic requirement
To qualify students must be in good academic standing with a GPA of 4.5 (out of 7) or equivalent. If your current GPA falls below the requirement please contact us to discuss your situation. We will do what we can to find the right program for you.

How to choose your courses
Now this is the fun part. As part of your application you will complete a CISaustralia Course Selection Worksheet. The instructions provided will assist you through the steps involved in selecting your courses.

Course load 
As a visa requirement, students must undertake two full-time courses (8 US credits) while attending this program – no more, no less. CISaustralia requires students to get 3 or 4 courses approved for academic credit with their Australian university – two as their top preferences, two as backups in the rare case a class might not run due to low enrolment numbers or professor availability.

Course approval
It is best to get 3 or 4 courses approved by your Australian university before you depart for your overseas program. This way you will have plenty of classes to choose from and some flexibility in setting up your schedule.

UCLA will supply all required handouts and textbooks. Optional materials and textbooks can to be purchased in advance or on arrival by students (at the student's expense). Most textbooks will be available at the UCLA Store in Ackerman Union. 

Course descriptions
The courses scheduled for the January program at UCLA Extension are the following (click on each course title to view the detailed course syllabus):

Strategic Communications for Nonprofit Organizations
4US credits / 36+ classroom contact hours
This course addresses a broad spectrum of communications skills vital to the success of a nonprofit organization. It explores external communications, including marketing and branding, message development, and conveying the message. It presents a way to communicate across a variety of platforms, adapting a nonprofit organisation's story in a variety of mediums, including social and digital media, public events, and one-on-one networking.

Digital Marketing
4US credits / 36+ classroom contact hours
The Internet, the digital revolution, and the move toward an information-based economy are dramatically changing business and the way products are marketed and sold. To be more successful in this new marketing world, business people need to understand what is changing and how to use the new tools to their optimal advantage. This course is for both veteran marketers who want to understand the new tools available through the Internet, and those who are comfortable with Internet applications and the digital world but want to learn the marketing fundamentals as they apply to the Internet.

The Business of the Film Industry
4US credits / 36+ classroom contact hours
Learn various aspects of how film projects are selected, the business analysis of possible return on investment, the sequence of development, production, distribution, and marketing of a film.  Screen films and learn how a story is told visually. All of the professionals that contribute to the story telling, with dialogue and without words: writer, director, cinematographer, composer, set designer, casting agent, costume designer, location manager, actors, researchers.

Entrepreneurship and New Venture Formation
4US credits / 36+ classroom contact hours
This course reviews the essential factors for turning a great idea into a successful business and explores various benefits and costs of sole proprietorships, partnerships, corporations, and franchises. Topics include market surveys; site analysis; permits and licenses; patents and protection of ideas; risk management; legal requirements and regulations; capital requirements and financing sources; determining the costs and prices of goods and services; advertising and marketing; record keeping; and lines of credit and cash flow requirements.

Design Thinking
4US credits / 36+ classroom contact hours
Design thinking is one of the most effective ways to strengthen your insights, thinking skills, and ability to innovate as a designer. Informed by Stanford’s d.school, this multi-disciplinary process strengthens familiar skills that are often undervalued. You learn to launch successful and innovative design solutions across the spectrum of media, including web, print and packaging. Class topics include prototyping and testing; rapid iteration; radical collaboration; empathetic observation; interviewing for empathy; persona mapping; assuming a beginner’s mindset; introduction of complex problems; and testing and observation. Weekly assignments encourage you to learn by doing, and take you through a series of hands-on exercises. The goal of design thinking is not simply to innovate, but also to create innovators. By the end of the class, you will see solutions that would otherwise be invisible, which become what we call “innovation”.

Leadership Communication Strategies
4US credits / 36+ classroom contact hours
This course is designed to improve interpersonal behaviours and communication skills for those in leadership roles with the goal of improving relationships, productivity, and the quality of work. Topics include a review of basic communication skills: listening, self-disclosure, and methods of expression; more advanced skills: nonverbal communication, influencing behaviours, addressing hidden agendas, and male/female communication in the workplace; conflict management skills; assertiveness; and responding to criticism.