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Submitted by darmstro on Sat, 12/03/2016 - 1:00pm


Russian scholars ask questions such as: How did the Slavic languages develop? Why did the Soviet Union fall? Is Russia the eastern flank of Europe or the heartland of another civilization?

Students interested in Russian can choose to graduate with either a Bachelor of Arts or a Bachelor of Arts Honours degree (co-operative education option also available), a double or joint major (Russian and another subject), or a minor.

Why study Russian?

Russia is the largest country on Earth, and a powerful force on the international stage, despite its political and economic challenges. It is also Canada’s neighbour in the Arctic and a country with which Canada has many similarities and mutual interests in the exploration of natural resources and environmental protection. Faced with Russia’s formidable presence, the Canadian government and Canadian businesses will need to rely on domestic graduates with degrees in Russian to help facilitate strategic encounters with their Russian partners.

Study Russian culture  and the development of Russian intellectual thought, and you will come to understand Russia’s present-day actions and attitudes in the areas of security, terrorism, elections, international relations, and economic interests.

A unique place to study

Learn a major world language and its culture at the University of Calgary — one of only seven universities in Canada, and the only one in Alberta, that offer a full-fledged Russian BA program. Acquire and improve your Russian language skills while you learn how contemporary Russian society and national identity have been shaped by Russia’s tumultuous history. Gain an appreciation of Russia’s many contributions to world culture.

You will focus on cultural and inter-cultural studies, Russian and Slavic linguistics, and a broad spectrum of Russian literature and other arts, especially of the 19th and 20th centuries. Learn about the way Russia adapts its culture to the global realities of the 21st century as it renegotiates its role and place in the world.

Our faculty members are here to help you on your journey towards mastering the Russian language and better understanding Russian culture and society. During your first year you can also benefit from additional help outside the classroom through the School of Languages, Linguistics, Literatures and Cultures’ Supplemental Instruction for Beginners’ Language Classes.

Enhance your degree

In your first two years, you will focus on building proficiency in the Russian language. After the first two years, we strongly recommend that you spend a summer or an entire term in a Russian immersion program abroad to further your language skills.

In your third and fourth years of study you will perfect your multifaceted knowledge of the Russian language and obtain a broad overview of Russian culture and society. You will also become comfortable reading Russian-language creative and academic writing so that you can find and critically assess information on any topic of interest to you.

  • Minor in Russian
    Looking to enhance your major field of study? Gain language skills and a good understanding of Russian culture through a Russian minor. You may build any ten half-course equivalents into your minor, since individual students bring different levels of linguistic knowledge and enter the program at different points.
  • Combined BA
    Enrich your undergraduate degree through a joint or double degree program. If you intend to pursue a combined degree, you will need to plan both your programs carefully. Be sure to seek advice from your Russian Advisor and from the Undergraduate Coordinator in your other program.
  • Honours Degree
    Acquire more in-depth training and demonstrate skill and ambition beyond a usual undergraduate degree. An honours degree is the best foundation for further study in Russian at the graduate level or for a program leading to a professional designation (such as Law). It also gives you the opportunity to work closely with a professor on your own research project and develop a taste for research.

    An honours program can involve an extra year of study. Interested and qualified BA students should discuss the requirements for obtaining an honours degree early on with the Russian Advisor.

    Join the best and brightest students at the University of Calgary and become a part of the Arts and Science Honours Academy.

  • Get involved
    At the University of Calgary, there are many ways to get involved and enjoy student life during your degree.
  • Becoming a peer mentor or signing up to receive peer mentorship is a great way to connect student-to-student and learn in an innovative environment.

Put your education to work

Employers look for creative people who have a broad knowledge base and sharp analytical skills. They want employees who can collaborate in solving problems, debate, communicate and think critically. You will gain these skills and more in our program.

By traveling abroad during your studies and participating in the cooperative education program you can explore the world, establish useful contacts and find the niche waiting for your unique set of skills and interests.

Combining Russian with another degree, technical skills or training from other fields will give you an advantage over those who can work only in English.

Our graduates have found jobs with government agencies and private corporations, obtained law degrees or gone on to graduate school.

For more information on career options, please visit Career Services – Russian.