Major and Minor Options

Major in Russian

The Department of Russian and Slavic Studies offers a Bachelor of Arts with a major in Russian. It provides instruction designed to develop competence in Russian language, awareness of cultural traditions, and an understanding of literature and the arts. All Russian conversation courses are oriented toward developing proficiency skills as determined by nationally recognized proficiency guidelines.

We offer two degree major emphases: Language-Focused and Culture-Focused. These emphases differ mainly in the amount of Russian language required for completion of the degree.

Major Emphasis 1: Language-Focused

The language-focused emphasis (30 units) is for students who are interested in achieving high proficiency in Russian and/or who may want to do graduate work in Russian and Slavic Studies. Rigorous training prepares students for future careers engaged with Russian culture, business and politics as well as supports those wishing to work in Russian-speaking areas of the world.

Major Emphasis 2: Culture-Focused

The culture-focused emphasis (30 units) prepares students for careers in government agencies, business, the non-profit sector, and more. It is also an attractive option to students adding Russian & Slavic Studies as a second major. Additionally, this track offers heritage learners of Russian an opportunity to acquire a meta-level of knowledge of the Russian language as well as a deeper understanding of Russian culture through a combination of literature courses and experiential learning opportunities.

The standard Russian major consists of 30 units beyond 100-level language courses and typically includes:

  • RSS 201, 202:  Intermediate Language
  • RSS 301, 302:  Advanced Language
  • RSS 308:  Intermediate Conversation
  • RSS 340:  19th Century Russian Literature in Translation
  • RSS 350:  The Soviet Experiment

The major sequence of courses is selected by the student in conference with the departmental advisor.  Appropriate substitutions are made for Heritage Speakers who may not need the entire language concentration and for students who prefer an Eastern European concentration.  No more than 6 units of Independent Study may apply to the major. A list of information literacy learning outcomes developed by the Slavic Studies Librarian, Michael Brewer, may be found here.

For the specific requirements for this degree, please see the Degree Requirements page.


Minor in Russian

We also offer a minor which requires a minimum of 18 units of study in Russian. Students must complete one course from the Russian language series.

For the specific requirements for this degree, please see the Degree Requirements page.


All undergraduate general education courses, and many program majors and minors, are currently under revision at the university. For this reason, we are advising students to contact our faculty advisor or to consult official UA pages for a precise listing of courses required for the major and minor.

The department participates in the honors program. Prospective honors students must consult with the undergraduate advisor, Prof. Suzanne Thompson.