Semester or Year in St. Petersburg, Russia

Through the Council on International Educational Exchange (CIEE), USC students can study at St. Petersburg State University for the academic year or for either the fall or spring semester. CIEE offers two programs: The Russian Area Studies Program (RASP), in which students study Russian language at the beginning or intermediate level and take area studies courses in English, and the Russian Language Program (RLP) for intensive study of Russian language. Both programs are hosted by St. Petersburg State University, and share orientations, housing, and excursions.


Students participate in a two-day orientation session in Helsinki, Finland, prior to arrival in St. Petersburg. The Russian Language Program (RLP) semester program focuses on intensive language study, with courses in phonetics, advanced composition and syntax, conversation, translation, and analytical readings, as well as lectures on Russian literature and contemporary Russian life. All courses are taught in Russian. Students attending for the full year take RLP I in the fall, and RLP II in the spring.

The Russian Area Studies Program (RASP) semester program is designed for students who have an interest in Russian area studies but who may not be majoring in Russian language. The program can accommodate different levels of language proficiency and aims to provide students with a greater understanding of Russian history and culture.

Students can earn up to 16 credits per semester on the RASP program and up to 17 credits per semester on the RLP I program. For the RLP II program (spring only) students can earn up to 14 credits per semester. Students attending the RLP program for the full the year can earn up to 31 credits.

Housing: Students are housed in private homes with Russian families or in dormitories.

Language Requirement: For RLP I (fall and academic year), four semesters of college-level Russian or the equivalent. For RLP II (spring only), five semesters of college-level Russian or the equivalent. For the RASP program (fall or spring), normally two semesters of college-level Russian or the equivalent, but requirement may be waived under exceptional circumstances.

Estimated Dates:
Fall: Late August to mid-December
Spring: Late January to mid-May
Year: Late August to mid-May

Estimated Costs:
Tuition: $9,100 $14,600
Additional Expenses*: $5,800 $11,500
Total: $14,900 (per semester) $26,100 (per year)

*Additional expenses include estimated costs for airfare, room and board, books and supplies, health insurance, and personal expenses (which can vary greatly from student to student). USC financial aid, scholarships, and tuition remission may be applied to program costs. Please visit the Office of Overseas Studies for more detailed cost information.

What's New

Alumnus Mikhail Gronas (Ph.D. 2002) has been promoted to the rank of associate professor with tenure at Dartmouth College.


USC Students in St. Petersburg

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  • Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures
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  • Taper Hall 255
  • Los Angeles, CA 90089-4353