Russian and Slavic Graduate Studies

The Department of Modern Languages and Linguistics offers a diverse and exciting MA curriculum in Russian language and historical linguistics, and Russian and Slavic literature and culture.

Our recent graduates have gone on to careers in the US State Department, the Department of Defense, and the Defense Language Institute. Others have entered doctoral programs in Education, English, Linguistics, Slavic and Spanish at Florida State University, Harvard University, Rutgers University, and University of Toronto. Our strong emphasis on linguistic and cultural proficiency prepares students for work in the federal or foreign service or non-governmental organizations. Career workshops with government personnel inform students of a wide range of professional opportunities.

Our students receive comprehensive research and pedagogical training. Pedagogical training emphasizes experience in the classroom as well as expertise in theory and methodology for Russian language instruction. After attending a two-week summer training program, graduate instructors enroll in a departmental seminar in Language Pedagogy and Second Language Acquisition. A teaching practicum focused on Russian language pedagogy and professional issues is offered every semester.

Students may also take courses with Modern Languages and Linguistics faculty in other language programs to develop expertise in comparative literary and cultural studies, sociolinguistics, and second language acquisition.


For general University requirements and for information on how to submit an online application, visit the Modern Languages and Linguistics graduate studies page.


Graduate students in Slavic are eligible for departmental teaching assistantships, as well as funding for summer study, conference, and research funds through the Winthrop-King Institute. University graduate fellowships are also available on a competitive basis to a limited number of students.


Two types of master’s degree programs are available, the thesis-type and the course-type. The thesis-type program requires a minimum of thirty semester hours including at least six hours of thesis credit. At least eighteen of these hours must be taken on a letter-grade basis. In the course-type program a minimum of thirty-two semester hours is required. At least twenty-one of these hours must be taken on a letter-grade basis.

MA Comprehensive Examination

For the course-type program, the comprehensive examination consists of both written and oral portions. The comprehensive examination is designed as a field examination, and the written portion will cover both the courses the student has taken and the general MA reading list required of all graduate students. The oral examination spans the fields encompassed by the written examination.

MA Thesis

Students who choose the thesis-type program must constitute an MA Supervisory Committee made up of the student's Major Professor, one Minor Professor (if any), and two other faculty members. The student must submit a thesis to the Supervisory Committee that reveals independent investigation and knowledge of the methods of scholarship within the major field.


Dr. Lisa Ryoko Wakamiya

Slavic Graduate Program Adviser