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Russian – Beginners




Admission requirements

  • Class of 2017: this course is not available to first-year students, as it has been scheduled opposite the Global Challenges courses.

  • Classes of 2013-2016: None.

Course description

Russian for Beginners is a Russian language course for students with no knowledge of the language. The course will provide students with the basics of Russian and aims to develop language skills in grammar, speaking, listening, reading and writing. The course provides the knowledge to communicate and understand Russian at A1 level.

Weekly overview

Week 1: Alphabet + Unit 1
Week 2: Unit 2
Week 3: Unit 3
Week 4: Unit 4/Vocabulary test/Listening test
Week 5: Unit 5/Reading test
Week 6: Presentations (depending on number of students, repetition of units)
Week 7: Unit 6/Vocabulary test/Grammar test
Week 8: Reading week – Home assignment (compositions/task)
Week 9: Unit 6
Week 10: Unit 7
Week 11: Unit 8
Week 12: Unit 9/Vocabulary test/Listening test
Week 13: Unit 9-10/Reading test
Week 14: Unit 10/Presentations
Week 15: Unit 10/Vocabulary test/Reading test
Week 16: Reading week – Home assignment (compositions/task)

Learning objectives

The required competences for a A1 level language can be described as follows. The student:

  • can understand and use familiar everyday expressions and very basic phrases aimed at the satisfaction of needs of a concrete type.

  • can introduce him/herself and others and can ask and answer questions about personal details such as where he/she lives, people he/she knows and things he/she has.

  • Can interact in a simple way provided the other person talks slowly and clearly and is prepared to help.

Mode of instruction

The course has an interactive and communicative way of learning language. Course contents are grammar practice together with vocabulary building and developing the skills with class activities. The course is based on course books, materials prepared by the instructor and the Internet. A blackboard site will be available with essential documents i.e. planning, hand-outs, additional exercises.

A substantial amount of self-study is required and the student are expected to be prepared for the classes.

h3 Assessment

Listening comprehension exam, 15%, Weeks 4 and 12
Reading comprehension exam, 20%, Weeks 5 and 13
Oral presentation + discussion, 20%, Weeks 6 and 14
Written exam: vocabulary/grammar/creative writing, 25%, Weeks 7 and 15

Compulsory literature

Colloquial Russian 1 (Svetlana le Fleming, Susan E.Kay, ISBN 9 780415 469951) without CD!


Oxford Russian Dictionary, Marcus Wheeler, Boris Ottokar Unbegaun, Paul Falla, Oxford University Press, 2007, ISBN 9780198614203

Any other pocket dictionary will be sufficient for Russian A1:

Russian-English, Langenscheidt, Pocket books Us, 2009. ISBN 9781439142370
Russian Berlitz Pocket Dictionary, Berlitz Publishing Company, 2006. ISBN 9789812469458

Preparation first session

It is important to bring the books to the first class. For the first class students read chapter 1 of the Textbook and learn the Russian alphabet.

Contact information