Thank you for the information
I too am coming from the West coast. I think you should look for studios in the Beacon Hill if you want to be close to school and not pay too much. Make sure you look for an apartment that has been deleaded. Some apartments can be listed really cheap on Craigslist but lead can be a serious issue. I have a friend that lives out there and she recommends Jamaica plain, Somerville, or Brookline. She said most of the students live in Allston/Brighton, but I have children so I am looking for somewhere quiet especially after living in IV near SB for undergrad....
I am from the Boston area and Jamaica Plain/Somerville/Brookline are all good places if you have children. I would describe them as up and coming towns/neighborhoods with young professionals. You might consider Arlington too. These areas are close to the train lines and have lots to do. GL with your search and welcome to Boston. Greatest city around.