Education in Russia

The importance of an education is well known in Russia. The right to education is laid out in the constitution of the Russia Federation and the nation has an exceedingly high literacy rate (98%).

In Russia there are two distinct educational levels, basic education and ongoing Higher Education.

Students in Russia attend compulsory basic education for a minimum of nine years. At the end of this period students can choose to move on to secondary level education, provided at a senior high school.

Basic Secondary General Education ends at age 18. On completion of this level of schooling students receive the Polnom Award and the Obshchem Obrasovanii (Certificate of Secondary Complete General Education).

Alternatively, after their compulsorily basic education they may decide to attend an initial vocational school like the PTU (Professional’no-technicheskoe uchilische) or the Professional’ny Litsei.

Professional’no-technicheskoe uchilische: One and a half/two years of profession based education and training.

Professional’ny Litsei: Three/four years combined professional and general secondary education. These facilities also supply several levels of skilled workers training.

Holders of School Leaving Certificates can also attend non-university higher education institutions which offer three/four years of professional and secondary general education as well as two years of vocational training.

Graduates from a secondary general school are then able to put in an application for a higher education institution, of which there are two types in Russia.

Higher Education

There are both state run and non-state run higher education institutions in Russia, and there are two educational levels.

Basic higher education covers a four-year period of full time instruction and results in the acquirement of a Bakalavr degree. The Bakalavr degree is awarded in all fields but Medicine.

Postgraduate higher education lasts up to and beyond five years. After the successful completion of the first two years, one of which is a year of research involving the writing of a thesis, students achieve a Magistr’s degree (the equivalent of a Masters Degree). The

The student can then decide to work towards one of the two levels of doctoral degree, Kandidat Nauk (PHD equivalent) or Doktor Nauk (Professor equivalent).

Competition for places on all levels of higher education is fierce.

Getting in to Russia’s top universities can be tricky as they require applicants to meet quite exacting entry requirements, including successfully completing a specialist entry exam.

Applications for entry into Russian universities are numerous because of the quality of education available for the cost. Tuition fees are significantly lower than in other Western nations, as is the average cost of living.

If you have Russian citizenship you can apply for universities in the same way as Russian nationals, directly through a university admissions office.

Something to bear in mind with Russia is that if you are applying to complete an advanced degree (MA equivalent or above) your prior degree must be in the same or an extremely similar field.

Across Russia the academic year lasts from the 1st September to the middle of June.