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Programs : Brochure

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Fact Sheet:
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Areas of Study: Russian, Russian Literature, Russian Studies Language of Instruction: English, Russian
Program Description:

Ranging from language and cultural immersion to business and current events, American Councils study abroad programs allow participants to become deeply acquainted with daily Russian life. Choose from the following programs:

Advanced Russian Language and Area Studies Program (RLASP)

One of the oldest and most respected overseas Russian immersion programs available to students today, RLASP is designed to improve participants' oral, listening, reading, and writing proficiency in Russian language and to develop their knowledge of Russian history, politics, culture, and society.
RLASP serves both graduate and undergraduate students as well as working professionals. The academic year, semester, and summer programs provide approximately 20 hours per week of in-class instruction in Russian grammar, phonetics, conversation, and cultural studies at Moscow International University, the Russian State Pedagogical University (Herzen Institute) in St. Petersburg, and the KORA Center for Russian Language in Vladimir. In the fall of 2014, American Councils also launched RLASP at Kazakh National University in Almaty, Kazakhstan for students who wish to study Russian in an immersion environment but are unable to travel to Russia due to funding restrictions or other concerns.

Program features include homestays, weekly excursions, travel to other regions of Russia/Kazakhstan, conversation partners, and a wide range of opportunities to pursue internships, volunteering, hobbies and personal interests in a Russian context. Content courses for area studies credit are offered in subjects such as Russian literature and history, political science, and contemporary Russian society. All courses are taught in Russian by expert faculty with experience teaching foreign students.

One day per week of the academic program is set aside for local cultural excursions. Excursions and travel include major sites such as art galleries and churches, but also include destinations off the beaten path. Students also participate on an extended regional field studies outside their host city.

Participants have the option of living with host families or in university dormitories. Host families provide private rooms and engage students in conversation and culture. All participants receive two meals per day.

American Councils conducts an informative pre-departure orientation in Washington, D.C. and an in-country orientation upon each group's arrival. Full-time, expert resident directors are available to assist participants abroad. Additionally, participants receive comprehensive overseas medical
insurance for the duration of the program.

Contemporary Russia

Designed to give participants new insight into the country today, Contemporary Russia explores regional geopolitical developments and diplomacy, economic and political reforms under Vladimir Putin, the role of the mass media in society, and new cultural phenomena shaping today's Russia.

While events in Russia since the 1991 dissolution of the Soviet Union have often filled headlines and captured the attention of western observes, few have a full understanding of their meaning, their causes, and their larger social and historical contexts. This four-week summer program is designed to give participants new insights into Russia today. Through readings and intensive coursework in the form of lectures, seminars, and discussions conducted with faculty of Moscow International University, program participants gain a fuller understanding of the complex factors that have shaped Russia’s evolution since the Gorbachev regime and the final days of the USSR.  Topics include Russia under Putin; the conflict with Ukraine; sanctions and the Russian economy; the role of mass media; elections and opposition figures. All content courses are conducted in English. 

Business Russian Language and Internship (BRLI) Program

Combining intensive business language classes and an internship in Moscow or St. Petersburg, BRLI prepares students to use Russian in the international workplace.

BRLI combines a specially designed curriculum focusing on the language of Russian business with an internship averaging ten to fifteen hours per week at a multinational company, business, or non-governmental organization agency in Russia. Moscow International University and the Russian State Pedagogical (Herzen) University in St. Petersburg host this program; students may apply to study for a semester, academic year, or summer. BRLI participants are granted U.S. academic credit through Bryn Mawr College. Program features include homestays, weekly excursions, travel to other regions of Russia, conversation partners, and a wide range of opportunities to pursue hobbies and personal interests in a Russian context.

The highly individualized BRLI curriculum can be tailored to serve students ranging from intermediate to near native speakers of Russian; however, less advanced students should consider whether their language proficiency will enable them to engage in substantive internships and benefit from instruction in the style and lexicon of business speech. (Students lacking a strong command of Russian grammar, for example, should consider enrolling in RLASP before applying to the BRLI program.) Peer tutoring, Russian-American discussion clubs, and a broad range of extra-curricular activities provide unique opportunities for BRLI students to connect with Russian friends and immerse themselves in daily Russian life.

One day per week of the academic program is set aside for local cultural excursions. Excursions and travel include major sites such as art galleries and churches, but also include destinations off the beaten path.Students also participate on an extended regional field studies outside their host city.

Participants have the option of living with host families or in university dormitories. Host families provide private rooms and engage students in conversation and culture. All participants receive two meals per day.

American Councils provides informative pre-departure and in-country orientations for all participants, along with full-time, expert resident directors in Moscow and St. Petersburg for 24-hour support and assistance. All participants are enrolled in comprehensive health and accident insurance during their program.

Oberlin College Deadlines (please confirm host program deadlines):
Oberlin College Deadlines (please confirm host program deadlines):
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Spring 2020 09/15/2019 01/01/2020 TBA TBA