Russian Universities Move Classes Online amid COVID-19 Crisis
The Russian Higher Education and Science Ministry has recommended all universities to switch to online courses as part of coronavirus infection lockdown measures. As of now, teaching at 80 percent of Russian higher education centres has moved online.The Global Universities Association set up a Contact Centre to offer the benefit of association members’ experience in developing online programmes for Russian and international students. The National Research and Education Network (NREN) launched a hotline for universities IT personnel and drew online course recommendations for teachers.
The Higher Education and Science Ministry urged universities to list free online courses to promote effective distance learning and technologies.
IT powerhouses Mail.ru Group, the Vkontakte social networking service, the GeekBrains education portal, the Skillbox online university etc. rallied to support Russian universities as they moved to remote teaching. Students and teachers are encouraged to communicate on social media and use cloud services, join online courses, webinars and chats, access audio and video content etc.
Aside from online instruction, universities offer virtual events and visits, conferences and courses. Prospective students are welcome to join Open Days tours of Immanuel Kant Baltic Federal University, ITMO University, Ural Federal University, Higher School of Economics, Petrozavodsk State University and other Russian higher education centres.
All international students can study at home or dormitory. Individual programmes are available to some students. If distance learning is not possible, universities arrange face to face classes while taking necessary precautions.