BA Russian Studies / Course details

Year of entry: 2020

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Course description

Our BA Russian Studies course will give you a grounding in writing, speaking and understanding the Russian language.

Language study offers much more than just language fluency. You'll explore diverse aspects of the culture, society, history, politics and literature of Russia, helping you to develop intercultural awareness and communication skills - both highly valued by employers.

You'll benefit from excellent teaching, student support and cutting-edge study facilities, as well as from the vibrancy and cultural diversity of Manchester itself, Western Europe's most multilingual city.

With placement options available at partner universities and in professional environments in Russia, a compulsory third year abroad gives our undergraduate students unforgettable and invaluable personal and professional experience.

Special features

Residence abroad

You can study and/or work for up to a year in a country or countries relevant to your chosen language(s), improving your communicative language skills in a native-speaker environment.

Palaver Festival

Palaver Festival , a collaboration with the neighbouring Contact Theatre, offers you the opportunity to explore links between language and performance across a range of genres including literature, theatre, dance and more.

Collaborations and partnerships

The University has links with language and cultural institutions across the city, including:

  • Instituto Cervantes - a centre for Spanish culture
  • HOME - international and contemporary art, theatre and film
  • Alliance Française - home of French language and culture.

Societies

Join The University of Manchester Russian Society and enjoy a variety of social events, such as Russian evenings, cookery, pub crawls, quizzes, film nights and more.

The University is home to over 30 international and language-related student societies offering a breadth of cultural activities and experiences.

Study an additional subject

Flexible Honours may allow you to study an additional arts, languages or cultures subject.

Teaching and learning

You'll learn through a mixture of formal lectures, seminars and tutorials, spending approximately 12 hours a week in formal study sessions.

For every hour of university study, you will be expected to complete a further 2-3 hours of independent study. You will also need to study during the holiday periods.

The individual study component could be spent reading, producing written work, revising for examinations or working in the University's Language Centre.

Language learning

During the first year of study, you develop crucial Russian language skills through dedicated grammar classes, oral practice with native-speaker lectors, language laboratory work, and a range of independent learning activities. Separate language pathways are offered for beginners and post A-level students.

During the second year, you continue with your intensive study of Russian language. In your final year, your compulsory studies include an advanced Russian language course, which focuses on oral proficiency, translation from and into Russian and composition in Russian.

Coursework and assessment

You will be assessed in various ways, including:

  • written and oral examinations;
  • presentations;
  • coursework (which may include library research, linguistic fieldwork and data collection, or web-based research);
  • in your final year, a dissertation based on a research topic of your choice.

Assessment methods vary from course unit to course unit - see individual course unit listings in the 'Course details' tab for more information.

Course content for year 1

You will develop crucial Russian language skills through dedicated grammar classes, oral practice with native-speaker lectors, language laboratory work, and a range of independent learning activities. Separate language pathways are offered for beginners and post A-level students.

Our first-year course units provide a solid base for your further studies, helping you to acquire and improve on important study skills, and also giving you a thorough grounding in concepts and debates crucial to an understanding of Russian society and culture.

Topics and themes introduced in first-year units are explored in depth in optional course units in the second and final years. As a result, these units also help you to make informed choices for subsequent years of study based on your own particular interests.

Semester 1 lectures will be delivered online, with a sound and/or video recording available and accessible across time zones (for students who cannot be on campus). Semester 1 face-to-face teaching will go ahead for seminars and language classes if at all possible (the plan is to record and post these classes too wherever possible). However, government advice and the University's ability to accommodate social distancing requirements will need to be factored into the consideration. Thus it is simply too early at present to know whether small classes will be able to go ahead face-to-face in October. A view will be taken about teaching in Semester 2 nearer the time. Check our website for the latest advice .

Course units for year 1

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
100 Years of Revolution: Russia from Lenin to Putin RUSS10242 20 Mandatory
The Making of Modern Russia RUSS10251 20 Mandatory
Russian Language 1 RUSS51011 20 Mandatory
Russian Language 2 RUSS51022 20 Mandatory

Course content for year 2

You will continue your intensive study of Russian language.

You will also choose from optional course units in a range of areas, such as Russian culture and thought, literature, translation studies, Central European and Balkan history and culture, and Polish language.

In addition, you begin to prepare for the compulsory year abroad, through meetings and consultations with our Residence Abroad Tutor and with final-year students who have recently returned from the year abroad.

Course units for year 2

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Russian Literature and Society from Pushkin to Putin RUSS20700 20 Mandatory
Russian Language 3 RUSS51030 20 Mandatory
Russian Language 4 RUSS51040 20 Mandatory
100 Years of Revolution: Russia from Lenin to Putin RUSS20242 20 Optional
The Making of Modern Russia RUSS20251 20 Optional
The 1989 Revolutions and their Aftermaths RUSS20472 20 Optional
Russian Studies Long Essay RUSS20501 20 Optional
Beginners' Polish ULPL10070 20 Optional
Intermediate Polish ULPL20070 20 Optional

Course content for year 3

Your third year of study is spent abroad under approved conditions.

Course units for year 3

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Russian Language 5 RUSS51050 20 Mandatory
Russian Politics POLI30071 20 Optional
Dissertation in Russian Studies RUSS30000 40 Optional
Russian Translation: Theory and practice RUSS30442 20 Optional
Culture, Media and Politics in the Soviet Union and post-Soviet Russia RUSS30601 20 Optional
Advanced Polish 1 ULPL20030 20 Optional
Intermediate Polish ULPL20070 20 Optional

Course content for year 4

Your compulsory studies comprise an advanced Russian language course unit - which focuses on oral proficiency, translation from and into Russian and composition in Russian - and a dissertation, which is supervised by an appropriate member of staff within Russian and East European Studies.

In researching and writing your dissertation, you explore in depth a subject of particular interest to you. The topic of your dissertation may be related to one of the final-year optional course units, but this is not obligatory.

Optional course units in subjects including Business Russian, Soviet and post-Soviet cinema, Russian popular culture, Russian and Soviet politics and history and memory in post-socialist Eastern Europe round out your studies.

Course units for year 4

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Russian Language 5 RUSS51050 20 Mandatory
Russian Politics POLI30071 20 Optional
Dissertation in Russian Studies RUSS30000 40 Optional
Russian Translation: Theory and practice RUSS30442 20 Optional
Culture, Media and Politics in the Soviet Union and post-Soviet Russia RUSS30601 20 Optional
Advanced Polish 1 ULPL20030 20 Optional
Intermediate Polish ULPL20070 20 Optional

Scholarships and bursaries

Residence Abroad Support We offer dedicated financial support packages of up to £2,000 for residence abroad students, based on household income. You will be automatically assessed for this, based on your Student Finance finance assessment - you just need to make sure you apply for a financial assessment in the academic year in which your residence abroad will take place.

RWS Brode Scholarship You may be eligible for this scholarship if you fulfil the following conditions:

  • Your qualifications were achieved at a state-funded school in the UK
  • your total household income does not exceed £60K (as verified by the Student Loan Company)
  • You achieve high marks in your A-levels (or equivalent qualifications), usually AAB or above
  • You apply to (and remain on) either a single honours Language programme, or a dual-language programme

Awards will be made according to a sliding scale, benefitting those who have the achieved the highest marks, whilst being from the most disadvantaged backgrounds.  Again, you will be automatically assessed for this, after you have registered on your degree programme. You simply need to make sure you allow the University access to your records when applying for your Student Loan (we cannot otherwise assess your eligibility).

Facilities

The University Language Centre is home to language resources, including a new interpreting suite, purpose-built recording rooms and resources for over 70 languages.

The Centre also offers multilingual word processing, language learning software, off-air recording and AV duplication, multilingual terrestrial and satellite TV, and extensive support and advice for learners.

Learn more on the Facilities page.

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service. Email: dass@manchester.ac.uk