Students work with Russian Flagship advisors to create individualized study plans for meeting program requirements.

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Coursework

Coursework is one component of the Russian Flagship’s rigorous, flexible curriculum. The program is designed to enable students of any major, even those entering UW-Madison with no prior experience studying Russian, to reach a professional level of language proficiency by graduation. For a typical student, this means condensing four years of Russian language coursework into two academic years and two summers, which includes a summer study abroad program to a Russian-speaking country. Students then spend an additional 1-2 academic years completing advanced Russian language coursework at UW-Madison before embarking on a capstone year abroad, the Russian Overseas Flagship (ROF), located in Almaty, Kazakhstan.

It is possible for students to complete the program, including the ROF capstone year abroad, in four years, but the majority of students who begin their study of Russian at UW-Madison need five years to complete the program. Factors that influence this timeline include the student’s prior experience studying Russian, other fields of study, number of majors or certificates, credit load per semester, extracurricular activities, work commitments, etc.

Students work with Russian Flagship advisors to build individualized study plans for meeting coursework and other requirements. Plans can be adjusted, on a case-by-case basis, to accommodate a student’s major, course schedule during a given semester, or other individual needs. Early planning is an important factor in ensuring that students are able to progress through the program in a timely manner.

Required Courses

Prerequisite Coursework

wdt_ID Course Credits Semester
1 Slavic 101: First-Semester Russian 4 Fall
6 Slavic 102: Second-Semester Russian 4 Spring
7 Slavic 203: Third-Semester Russian 4 Fall (or Slavic 117-118 during Summer)
8 Slavic 204: Fourth-Semester Russian 4 Spring (or Slavic 117-118 during Summer)
9 Slavic 275: Third-Year Russian I 3 Fall
10 Slavic 276: Third-Year Russian II 3 Spring
11 Slavic 315: Russian Language and Culture I 3 Fall
12 Slavic 316: Russian Language and Culture II 3 Spring
13 Slavic 321: Fourth-Year Russian I 3 Fall (or Study Abroad during Summer)
14 Slavic 465: Advanced Readings in Russian Literature & Culture 3 Spring (or Study Abroad during Summer)

Advanced Coursework

wdt_ID Course Credits Semester
1 Slavic 433: History of Russian Culture 3 Fall
2 Slavic 434: Contemporary Russian Culture 3 Spring
3 Slavic 699: Russian Across the Curriculum Tutorial 1 Fall or Spring
4 GNS 471: Advanced Topics in East European and Central Asian Languages and Cultures (Intercultural Introduction to Kazakhstan) 1 Spring
Students choose one of the following courses:
wdt_ID Course Credits Semester
1 Slavic 560: Capstone Seminar in Russian Literature & Culture 3 Fall
2 Slavic 555: Advanced Russian Listening & Speaking 3 Spring

Kazakh Language Requirement

Kazakhstan is a multilingual and multiethnic country in which both Russian and Kazakh are widely used, in addition to many other languages, including English. Although Russian is widely spoken in Almaty, the city where the Russian Overseas Flagship (ROF) is located, both Russian and Kazakh are official languages of Kazakhstan, and knowing some basic Kazakh can go a long way in showing respect for and interest in Kazakh culture.
As part of their linguistic and cultural preparation for the ROF, Russian Flagship students must complete a series of introductory, non-credit Kazakh language lessons, and pass the end-of-lesson quizzes, in Salem, Kazakhstan, an online Kazakh language course for Russian Flagship students. Students must complete this requirement by August 1, before they depart for the ROF.
The required Salem, Kazakhstan lessons are:

  • Вводный урок (Introductory lesson)
  • Тема 1: Все обо мне (All about me)
  • Тема 2: Где я живу (Where I live)
  • Тема 3: Едим дома или идем в ресторан? (Do we eat at home or go out to eat?)

A link to the Salem, Kazakhstan course is in the Russian Flagship’s Canvas site. The course is hosted by the Language Flagship Technology Innovation Center at the University of Hawai’i.
Students interested in studying Kazakh for credit at any point before the capstone ROF are encouraged to take advantage of one or both of the following opportunities at UW-Madison:

  • Kazakh language courses are offered during the academic year through the Department of German, Nordic, & Slavic+. The first course in the sequence, offered in the fall, is GNS 331: First Semester Kazakh, 4 credits.
  • Intensive summer instruction in Kazakh, 8 credits, is offered through the Central Eurasian Studies Summer Institute (CESSI).

Students on the ROF take an introductory course in Kazakh in the fall semester. Kazakh language is offered on the ROF in the spring semester as well, as an optional course.

Example Study Plans

Four-Year Plan

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Year 1

Academic Year

Courses: Slavic 101 (Fall) and Slavic 102 (Spring): First Year Russian, 8 credits

Summer Term

Courses: Slavic 117 and Slavic 117: Intensive Second Year Russian, 8 credits

Year 2

Academic Year

Courses: Slavic 275 (Fall) and Slavic 276 (Spring): Third Year Russian, 6 credits; Slavic 315 (Fall) and Slavic 316 (Spring), 6 credits

Summer Term

Study Abroad: Advanced Russian Language and Area Studies Program (RLASP) or another eligible program that provides the equivalent of Slavic 321 and Slavic 322: Fourth Year Russian, 6 credits

Year 3

Academic Year

Courses: Slavic 433 (Fall) and Slavic 434 (Spring): History of Russian Culture and Contemporary Russian Culture, 6 credits; Slavic 560 (Fall) or Slavic 555 (Spring), 3 credits each; Slavic 699 (Fall or Spring): Russian Across the Curriculum Tutorial, 1 credit; GNS 471: Intercultural Introduction to Kazakhstan (Spring), 1 credit

Year 4

Academic Year

Study Abroad: Russian Overseas Flagship (ROF), 18 credits per semester

The ROF is located in Almaty, Kazakhstan and includes intensive coursework, individual tutoring, direct enrollment in a course related to the student’s major at the host university, a professional internship, and a homestay with a Russian-speaking family.

Five-Year Plan

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Year 1

Academic Year

Courses: Slavic 101 (Fall) and Slavic 102 (Spring): First Year Russian, 8 credits

Summer Term

Courses: Slavic 117 and Slavic 117: Intensive Second Year Russian, 8 credits

Year 2

Academic Year

Courses: Slavic 275 (Fall) and Slavic 276 (Spring): Third Year Russian, 6 credits; Slavic 315 (Fall) and Slavic 316 (Spring), 6 credits

Summer Term

Study Abroad: Advanced Russian Language and Area Studies Program (RLASP) or another eligible program that provides the equivalent of Slavic 321 and Slavic 322: Fourth Year Russian, 6 credits

Year 3

Academic Year

Courses: Slavic 433 (Fall) and Slavic 434 (Spring): History of Russian Culture and Contemporary Russian Culture, 6 credits

Year 4

Academic Year

Courses: Slavic 560 (Fall) and Slavic 555 (Spring), 6 credits; Slavic 699 (Fall or Spring): Russian Across the Curriculum Tutorial, 1 credit; GNS 471: Intercultural Introduction to Kazakhstan (Spring), 1 credit

Year 5

Academic Year

Study Abroad: Russian Overseas Flagship (ROF), 18 credits per semester

The ROF is located in Almaty, Kazakhstan and includes intensive coursework, individual tutoring, direct enrollment in a course related to the student’s major at the host university, a professional internship, and a homestay with a Russian-speaking family.

"The support you receive is one of the most important aspects of the program for me. Every step of the way, there are advisors there to help you plan out classes and when to apply for study abroad programs, and there are tutors to help with any questions about grammar, language, culture, etc."

Megan Feeley, Current Student