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Russian universities offer three types of degrees.

A Bachelor or undergraduate degree takes four years to complete. Bachelor programs often are focused on broader academic curriculum rather than professional studies and are viewed as a prerequisite to pursue graduate studies.

A Professional or Specialist degree requires five years of full-time study and usually includes internships. Professional programs provide training in several fields, including engineering, chemistry, and others. It is often considered as a prerequisite for graduate studies in these fields.

A Master degree requires two years of full-time training and presentation of thesis based on original research. It is open to graduates of both undergraduate and Specialist programs.

Finally, a doctoral degree or PhD, is the highest level of academic degree students can achieve. Unlike most other university systems, Russian university curriculum offers a two-tier program in graduate studies: applicants work toward candidate of sciences designation and afterward toward a doctor of sciences designation. Both are viewed as an equivalent to a PhD degree, but candidate of sciences degree typically requires three to four years of studies, whereas doctor of sciences degree often takes five to fifteen years of research work. In addition, academic requirements and standards to DS thesis are considerably higher than to thesis of candidate of sciences.

Russian educational system uses a five-point grading scheme, in which 2 point mark is a fail grade and 5 point mark is excellent. 3 is viewed as satisfactory, and 4 as good. Roughly, the following conversion chart could be used:

2 points

3 points

4 points

5 points

D, F




Pass/fail – scheme is often used in minor disciplines or intermediate tests. To enter the next academic year students should have at least satisfactory for all examinations and pass for all tests.

Assessment of learning outcomes

 The University uses the following assessment methods:

  • routine attestations are conducted through control works, individual tasks, colloquiums, and etc. (day-by-day assessment)
  • intermediate attestations are conducted through exams, pass-fail tests, term-work presentation, and etc. (twice a year)
  • final attestations are conducted through state examinations and presentation of graduation thesis


 Types of classes

Lectures. Classes where lecturers present new material to students.

Seminars or discussion classes. Classes where teachers discuss the presented materials with students.
Practical classes or workshops. Classes where students are offered to consider and solve a problem using materials and information they obtained during course. It may include PB methods.
Laboratory classes. Classes where students can use research equipment for solution of offered problems.  The key point is operation with different research or production equipment.
Practical training or internships. Practical training breaks into three types: academic, industrial, and pre-graduation. The training is held at industrial companies, where they can receive applied experience.

Academic and research work. Classes where students receive skills for conducting research activities, preparing research reports, and their following presentation.

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