As non-commercial, educational FM station broadcasting for the public interest, KCSB enters into no commercial contracts which allow access to the airwaves and it strives to provide programming substantially different from that carried by commercial broadcast media. It is also designed to be educational for both programmers and listeners. UCSB students and other programmers are provided an opportunity to learn the fundamentals of radio broadcasting, both technically and in terms of broadcast content, and to explore more advanced aspects of broadcasting and the audio medium.
KCSB insures that these opportunities are offered to a diverse community, especially people who are traditionally underrepresented in broadcasting.
KCSB provides programming that is stimulating and informative. News and public affairs programming place an emphasis on providing a forum for unpopular, controversial and/or neglected perspectives on important local, national and international issues. Cultural arts and music programming covers a wide spectrum of expression from traditional to experimental which reflects the diverse community which KCSB serves.