The System of Education in Russia

The System of Education in Russia

The system of education in Russia includes 2 levels – basic and professional education. The first one includes preschool, primary, basic and secondary education, that all together make up a school block. The professional level includes secondary and higher stages – Bachelor’s, Specialist’s and Master’s degree and preparation of highly qualified staff.

General Education

School education in Russia is not charged, its duration is 11 years and has the following gradation: elementary, secondary and high school (grades 1-4, 5-9 and 10-11), the first 2 stages are mandatory. School admission age is 6-7, and scholars usually graduate when they are 17-18. School graduates get a school certificate necessary for becoming a university student.

Secondary Vocational Education

Students in Russia now can leave school after grade 9 and go to a college, technical school or specialized school to get secondary vocational education. In such institutions skilled workers, employees and mid-level professionals are trained. Such education can also serve as a preparatory stage before entering the university. The study usually lasts from 2 to 4 years.

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Higher Education

Having finished the 11th grade scholars pass the Unified State Examination on several subjects and following the examination results they can enter the university. Higher education in Russia could be free, but the quantity of state-funded spots is limited. Therefore there is a possibility to study under contract at the Russian universities. Higher education system of the first level includes Speciality programmes, which last for 5-6 years, and a Bachelor’s degree, which lasts for 4 years. The second level includes Master’s degree programmes (last for 2 years on average), and the third level – postgraduate study (from 3 years).

Medical education programmes have a slightly different structure. Medical Speciality graduates can continue education in residency (the study duration is from 2 to 4 years), internship or postgraduate study. To find the programme you need, please use our search engine.

Today international students in Russia can choose any level of higher education. In turn, Russian students of any education level can continue study abroad, by enrolling at a foreign institution, receiving an internship or taking advantage of a student exchange programme.


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Preparatory Department for foreigners


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    Official website about higher education in Russia for foreigners

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