MA Program Tracks & Requirements

Department of Russian and Slavic Studies MA Program Satisfactory Progress Policy and Track Timelines

To make satisfactory progress toward the MA, a full-time student must meet the requirements listed below for the relevant track. (Satisfactory progress for part-time students will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.) Below, a “year” means two consecutive semesters, excluding the summer term. Semesters are counted from the one in which the student enters the MA program. 

Language, Literature and Linguistics (LLL) Track

Year One

  • By the end of the first full week of the first semester, complete the computerized language placement exam and the oral assessment interview.
  • Complete a minimum of 15 units of approved graduate-level coursework with a minimum average GPA of 3.0. This coursework is to include RSSS 515 Structure of Russian*, RSSS Advanced Reading**, and at least one RSSS 515 Oral Communication course**. Other courses should be selected in consultation with the Graduate Advisor/Director of Graduate Studies on the basis of course availability and overall track course requirements.
  • By the end of the second semester, complete and submit an approved “Plan of Study” (Click here for further information Link internal to: grad requirements plan of study.doc).
  • By the end of the second semester, if an optional thesis will be done, identify a Thesis Advisor and discuss a proposed thesis topic, and submit to the Graduate Advisor a Thesis Proposal, which states the proposed topic and is signed by the Thesis Advisor. 

Year Two

  • By the end of the third semester, discuss with the Graduate Advisor the constitution of the MA Examination Committee.
  • During the second half of the fourth semester take and pass all sections of the MA Examination. With Examination Committee approval, any section of the exam not passed may be retaken during the regularly scheduled MA Examination period the following semester.
  • If an optional thesis will be done, submit a one-page thesis abstract to the Graduate Advisor/Director of Graduate Studies by the end of the third semester, identify the membership of the Thesis Committee by the end of the second week of the fourth semester and complete the Thesis by the end of the fourth semester.  See the thesis progress deadlines below in the REES Track description. Public presentation of the optional thesis is encouraged, but not required
  • Complete LLL Track Coursework Requirements with a minimum average GPA of 3.0. 

Overall LLL Track Coursework Requirements

RSSS 515 Structure of Russian (3 units)
RSSS 515 Advanced Reading (3 units)**
RSSS 515 Oral Communication (6 units)**
RSSS 583 History of the Russian Language (3 units)
One other RSSS Russian linguistics course (3 units)
RSSS 696a Proseminar (3 units)
RSSS 696c 19th Century Russian Literature (3 units)
RSSS 696d 20th Century Russian Literature (3 units)

6 units of approved electives, 3 units of which are to be RSSS 579 for students who wish to serve as GATs in language classrooms.

If an optional thesis will be done, 6 units of RSSS 910 Thesis. In the LLL track these 6 units of RSSS 910 may count as elective units toward the MA degree.

Russian and East European Studies (REES) Track

Year One

  • By the end of the first full week of the first semester, complete the computerized language placement exam and the oral assessment interview.
  • Complete a minimum of 15 units of approved graduate-level coursework with a minimum average GPA of 3.0. This coursework is to include RSSS 515 Structure of Russian*, RSSS Advanced Reading**, and at least one RSSS 515 Oral Communication course**. Other courses should be selected in consultation with the Graduate Advisor/Director of Graduate Studies on the basis of course availability and overall track course requirements.
  • By the end of the second semester, complete and submit an approved “Plan of Study” (Click here for further information Link internal to: grad requirements plan of study.doc).
  • By the end of the second semester, identify a Thesis Advisor and suggest at least two additional faculty readers (the Thesis Committee), discuss a proposed thesis topic with the Thesis Advisor, and submit to the Graduate Advisor a Thesis Proposal, which states the proposed topic and is signed by the Thesis Advisor.

Year Two

  • By the end of the fourth week of the third semester, pass the Reading Comprehension Qualifying Exam.
  • By the end of the fourth week of the third semester, meet with a librarian to discuss information resources prior to submitting the abstract of the thesis. Submit a one-page thesis abstract to the Graduate Advisor/Director of Graduate Studies.
  • By the end of the twelfth week of the third semester, submit a complete draft of the introductory chapter (or alternatively another chapter) of the thesis and an annotated bibliography to the Thesis Advisor and First Reader.
  • By the end of the eighth week of the fourth semester, submit a complete draft of all but the concluding chapter of the thesis to the Thesis Advisor and First Reader.
  • 10-14 days prior to the scheduled thesis defense, all readers (Advisor, First Reader and Second Reader) should have a defendable version of the thesis in their possession.
  • By the end of the fourth semester complete, successfully defend and revise as necessary the Thesis.  NOTE:  No thesis defenses will be scheduled to take place after the last day of classes.
  • Complete all REES Track Coursework requirements with a minimum average GPA of 3.0.

Overall REES Track Coursework Requirements

RSSS 515 Structure of Russian (3 units)
RSSS 515 Advanced Reading (3 units)**
RSSS 515 Oral Communication (3 units)**
RSSS 505a Great Authors of the 19th Century (or RSSS 696c) (3 units)
RSSS 505b Great Authors of the 20th Century (or RSSS 696d) (3 units)
RSSS 696a Proseminar (3 units)

15 units of approved electives, 3 units of which are to be RSSS 579 for students who wish to serve as GATs in language classrooms. 3 of these units, not counting RSSS 579, must be taken from among departmental offerings.

RSSS 910 Thesis (3 or 6 units) 

For Both Tracks

  • * If the computerized language placement exam and oral interview warrant, the student may be required to take during the first year alternative language coursework in preparation for taking RSSS 515 Structure of Russian in the fall semester of the following year.
  • ** Students judged to have native-level Russian language proficiency will replace RSSS 515 Advanced Reading and RSSS 515 Oral Communication with other coursework approved by the Graduate Advisor/Director of Graduate Studies.
  • No more than 6 units of Independent Study coursework will be counted toward the MA degree requirements.

Satisfactory Progress will be assessed at the end of the second and each subsequent semester. If progress is judged not to be satisfactory, the student will be informed of this in writing by the Graduate Advisor/Director of Graduate Studies or Department Head by the end of the first week of the following semester. This communication will include an indication of what the student must do to return to Satisfactory Progress status. Failure to meet these indicated corrective requirements will result in the student being placed on academic probation and possibly conversion to graduate non-degree-seeking status by the Dean of the Graduate College. 

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