Russian Major (B.A.)

Russian Major (B.A.)
Russian Major Students in class giving presentations

What is Russian?

Russian is the most widely spoken of the Slavic languages and is the most geographically widespread language of Eurasia. To study Russian is to be introduced to one of the world’s great literatures and cultures. In the Russian degree program, you’ll study the Russian language and its history, reading important works of 19th and 20th century literature. You’ll also explore Russian contemporary society. Discussing Slavic cultures, Russian culture, various cultures inside of Russia and in post-soviet territories will help you understand regional and cultural diversity, build cross-cultural skills and become a global citizen.

Why study Russian at UNH?

Your studies in Russian will take place both inside and outside the classroom at UNH. You’ll spend a summer or semester studying in Russia, and also will have opportunities for internships. You will learn how to apply Russian to your professional field of interest. You’ll be able to interact and work closely with faculty. Throughout the academic year, you may also gather regularly with other students in the Russian Club for Russian tea and activities. Many students in the Russian program pursue a double or dual major in areas such as business administration or international affairs.

Potential careers

  • Diplomat
  • Foreign service officer
  • International Business leader
  • Interpreter
  • Lawyer
  • Translator
  • Teacher
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    Homeland Security and Russian Majors
    "I had always craved to learn more about the world, and its many different cultures, and Russian satisfied that."
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    Classics and Russian Majors | Owner of Linguistics Company
    What are you currently doing for work and how did you get to this point? After graduating Summa Cum Laude with a dual degree in classics and Russian and a minor in linguistics, I went on to earn my M.A. in translation from the University of Exeter in south England. From there, I worked as…
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    History and Russian Majors
    There’s often a difference between the things that bring you to UNH as a high schooler and those that keep you here as a Wildcat. Peter Jaarsma, a history and Russian major from Cornish, N.H., demonstrates the point. He chose to come to UNH because he liked the campus, wanted a university that was not too big and not to small and knew he wanted to have the freedom to explore…
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Curriculum & Requirements

The Russian program provides students with an opportunity to study one of the world's most important languages, its literature and its culture. In addition to the intrinsic value of Russian language, literature and culture as a liberal arts experience, majoring in Russian leads to a number of careers, such as teaching, translation and interpreting, government and the Foreign Service. The knowledge of the language and cultural proficiency is also a valuable asset in preparing you for careers in law, economics and international trade. All Russian majors are strongly encouraged to double major or include a relevant minor in their studies.

If you would like more information please contact

Degree Requirements

Minimum Credit Requirement: 128 credits
Minimum Residency Requirement: 32 credits must be taken at UNH
Minimum GPA: 2.0 required for conferral*
Core Curriculum Required: Discovery & Writing Program Requirements
Foreign Language Requirement: Yes

All Major, Option and Elective Requirements as indicated.
*Major GPA requirements as indicated.

Major Requirements

New students will be assigned to the proper language level course after consultation with the Russian faculty. 

Candidates for a degree must satisfy all of the University Discovery Program requirements in addition to satisfying the requirements of each individual major program. Bachelor of arts candidates must also satisfy the foreign language proficiency requirement.

Russian majors may use two major-required courses to satisfy two Discovery category requirements. In addition, Russian majors may take RUSS 521W Devils, Deities, and Madness in Russian Literature to satisfy both a Discovery Inquiry requirement and a major requirement.

Transfer students must earn a minimum of 12 major credits at the Durham campus.

All students must complete at least 10 classes (40 credits). The required minimum overall GPA in major coursework is 2.0. Specific course requirements are: 

Language Courses 1
Students entering major at a higher language level will replace the language courses with additional electives
RUSS 401
Elementary Russian I
RUSS 402
Elementary Russian II
RUSS 503
Intermediate Russian I
RUSS 504
Intermediate Russian II
RUSS 631
Advanced Russian Conversation and Composition
RUSS 632
Advanced Russian Conversation and Composition
Electives 2
Select a minimum of three courses from the following Culture, Linguistics, and Literature category:
RUSS #425M
Topics in Russian Culture and Society in Moscow
Devils, Deities, and Madness in Russian Literature
RUSS 525
Russia: Mythology and Propaganda
RUSS #525M
Russia:Mythology and Propaganda in Moscow
RUSS #685
Study Abroad
Readings in Russian Literature
RUSS #725M
Topics in Russian Culture and Society in Moscow
RUSS 733
History of Slavic Languages and Culture
Advanced Language and Style
RUSS 797
Special Studies in Russian Language, Literature, and Culture
LLC 540
Film History
LLC 552
Comparative Literature: Masterpieces of World Literature II
LLC 595
Language Practicum
LLC 791
Methods of Foreign Language Teaching
Capstone 3
LLC 790
World Languages Capstone
Study Abroad
Study abroad is a requirement for the Russian major, although an approved equivalent high-impact experience may be substituted for study abroad with a compelling justification.

While the major may start counting as early as the Elementary I level (RUSS 401), those who enter the major at a higher level (RUSS 503, RUSS 504, RUSS 631, or RUSS 632) will replace the courses they skip from the elementary, intermediate and advanced language category with additional courses from the electives category. 


More electives required if fewer language credits were completed due to proficiency level and placement.

Students are encouraged to take as many of the culture, linguistics, and literature elective in the Russian language as possible, but there is no limit on the number of classes conducted in English from the electives category. Students taking no classes in the target language in a given semester will be strongly encouraged to enroll in one credit of conversation hour to maintain their language skills, and many of the courses taught in English will allow students the option to (or even require students to) do some work in the target language. 


Or approved equivalent 700-level course taken at UNH, approved study abroad equivalent, or approved high-impact experience (such as internship with a robust target language/culture component). 

  • Upon completion of a Russian major, students are able to express themselves orally and in writing on a variety of topics with accuracy, and they are able to support their opinions with evidence found in the media and scholarly reading. Students are able to articulate their ideas and defend their opinions.
  • Throughout the language sequence students are expected to give oral presentations on a variety of topics, related to their interest, second major or minor.
  • Students have spent at least 8 weeks-semester/year in Russia on a study abroad program, which strengthens their language skills, improves their proficiency, both in language and culturally, and which allows them to interact with native speakers. The major includes at least two courses on Russian literature (one in English and one in Russian), and students are familiar with the works of major Russian authors (i.e. Pushkin, Lermontov, Turgenev, Gogol, Dostoevsky, Tolstoy, Chekhov, Pasternak, Solzhenitsyn, Zoshchenko, Bulgakov, among others.) Students are able to understand the texts in the historical and literary movements of Russia, as well as analyze the works in and of themselves. Students study the cultural history of Russia/Soviet Union/Russia to understand the Russian perspective of itself and the world.

Explore Program Details

Russian majors are required to spend a semester or summer on an approved study abroad program in Russia. UNH Global Education maintains a list of UNH-approved institutions that manage study abroad programs. Check with your major advisor for guidance on an appropriate program for you.

The Program offers a short-study January term course in Moscow that is administered through the COLA Center for Study Abroad.

COLA Study Abroad
UNH Study Abroad

While there are many useful websites here, this is by no means an exhaustive list. Rather, this list is a beginning step for you to navigate the web for information on Russia, Russian, Russian culture and history.


Art Gallery "Stalker"

Музеи России


Russia Online


(be careful not to completely rely on what you read, since context matters)

Multitran Dictionary

Lingvo Live

The Russian Dictionary Tree

  • Detailed definitions, many word forms







We suggest you look for a transliterated or phonetic font – so that most letters from your keyboard are the same – that is, when you see D on your keyboard, and you type in Cyrillic, you get Д


Grammar Information (and some with exercises)


  • Grammar, word of the day, quizzes, exercises, vocabulary.

Russian Language Mentor

  • Online Russian tutor, language, culture (in English), etc.


  • Cases, grammar, verbs, exercises.

Language Guide

  • Audio of common word items – spelling and sound.


  • Reading and listening modules.

Cornell University - Russian Language Program

Language Institute - University of Wisconsin-Madison

  • Russian Advanced Interactive Listening Series
List of Russian Newspapers and Journals

Русская Литература в Интернете / Газеты

Русская Литература в Интернете / Журналы

News from Russia—in English

Pravda - English/

The Moscow Times

News from Russia—in Russian

Pravda - Russian

Аргументы и Факты: новости России и мира



РИА Новости

Информация ФСБ России :: Федеральная Служба Безопасности

Независимая газета

Новости Владивостока



Good for information about the field of Slavic/Russian studies; job opportunities; what is happening in Russian study around the country.



American Councils

Search Engines

Каталог@Mail: Каталог интернет сайтов

Diamond Team/catalog





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