Frequently asked questions
When and how can I submit my documents and send my application to study in Russia?
Please fill in the Application form and get the contacts of RACUS representative in your country by email.
Prepare and submit the full set of documents required to apply for your education in Russia:
- Standard Application Form (to be issued by RACUS representative in your country);
- Copy of your passport page with your photo and personal data (your passport should be valid at least 2 years after the supposed date of your arrival to Russia);
- Copy of your Higher School Certificate/ Diploma of higher education with academic transcript;
- Signed contract (to be issued by RACUS representative in your country).
Applications should be submitted to RACUS Central Office in Russia and in its offices in other countries annually from the 10th of January to the 1st of October of the current year.
Discover three easy steps to your education in Russia.
How many years will I study in Russia?
The applicants who come to study at Russian language programs and do not speak the Russian language are admitted to the Foundation course. The duration of studies is one academic year, the ob-jective is to learn the Russian language and improve the knowledge of principal and special subjects required to continue education at university at the chosen specialty.
The applicants who intend to study at English and/or French language programs do not need to take any Foundation course. They apply directly for the 1st year of their major program. The Russian language as a foreign language is included into their education plan throughout their studies.
Should I provide any certificate to confirm my knowledge of English or French?
Upon arrival students who have chosen to study in English or French should have an interview to prove their language competence. It is not necessary to present international language certificates (IELTS, TOEFL, CAE, DALF, TCF etc.). For studies in Russia it is sufficient to have language course (English or French) in the certificate of secondary or higher education.
Are there any scholarships available for foreign students?
The Russian Government annually awards over 15 000 state-sponsored scholarships that fully cov-er tuition and accommodation fees in students’ hostel in Russia. These scholarships are distributed by the Ministry of Education and Science of the Russian Federation among almost all countries around the world via Ministries, governmental and non-governmental organizations, Embassies, etc. You may get information regarding availability of scholarships and requirements at the Embassy of Russia in your country. Please note that in order to receive any state-sponsored scholarships the applicant should have secondary school certificate with overall passing score at least 80%. At the same time, there are no scholarships available for programs taught in English and French, and there is a limited number of scholarships available for the most popular specialities such as medicine.
Any student having a certificate of secondary education with overall passing score less than 80% is eligible to study only on a fee basis and may choose any specialty without restriction.
From our experience the sponsorship may be also offered by government (Ministry of Education in your country, government foundations, etc.) and by non-government organisations (private charity foundations, companies interested to train qualified personnel, family members, etc). All necessary documents and admission letters regarding admission to the chosen university in Russia required for the sponsor in your home country will be prepared by RACUS upon consideration of the full set of your documents. We recommend you to consider carefully all possible options to fulfil your dream about high-quality and prestigious higher education in Russia!
I have no passport or my education certificate/academic results are not available at the moment. Can I apply?
Your application may be considered as an exceptional case and you may receive an Admission Letter to confirm your conditional admission for the studies and the necessity to submit all missing documents within the agreed period of time. For more detailed information do not hesitate to contact RACUS office in your country or RACUS Central Office in Russia.
Are there any entrance exams?
Foreign students coming for studies at the Foundation course through RACUS are admitted to university without any entrance exams.
Foreign students coming for programs in Russian, English or French through RACUS are admitted to universities on favourable terms, namely, they pass tests or interview and do not have to pass en-trance examinations in full as other applicants who apply independently.
We guarantee your admission to the university if you meet all the formal requirements.
Will my Russian diploma be recognized and accepted in my home country?
Upon completion of the university the graduates receive diploma of higher education in conformi-ty with Russian national standards specifying degree/qualification (Bachelor of Science, Master of Sci-ence, Specialist / Specialist Engineer) and educational program. The recognition of Russian diplomas all over the world is ensured by intergovernmental and international agreements / contracts or by the na-tional legislation of relevant countries.
The graduates can optionally receive additional document European Supplement that enables them to receive the equivalence of diploma in any of 53 European and other countries (see the list of countries) which have signed The Lisbon Convention on the Reciprocal Recognition of Qualifications for Higher Education in the European Region, to continue education or find employment in these countries.
I paid for my education but failed to come. Will I get my money back?
1. In case the student made the payment but for some reasons failed to come to Russia for studies, the amount paid for his or her tuition, accommodation and life and health insurance will be reimbursed in the amount of 100%, however the student’s registration fee, the bank charges and currency conversion into Russian roubles charges are non-refundable as per the invoice.
2. In case the student arrived to Russia and was provided with accommodation in students’ hostel, the amount paid for studies is subject to the following regulations: a) the amount paid for the Foundation course is non-refundable; b) the amount paid for the undergraduate (1 – 6 years) and for the post-graduate programs is reimbursed in the amount of 30% of the tuition, accommodation fees in a stu-dents’ hostel for one academic year. The student’s life and health insurance fee, the registration fee, the bank charges and currency conversion charges are non-refundable.
The refund may be proceeded to the student only upon the receipt of the properly filled in Application for Refund Form issued by RACUS Central Office and only to the foreign currency account of the student/sender to the provided banking details.
Which academic program can I choose?
Group of Russian State Universities RACUS offers education in over 500 medical, engineering, economic and humanitarian specialties taught in English, French and Russian languages. Choose your program.
What languages can I choose to study in Russia?
Education at Russian universities is carried out in Russian, English and French.
You may choose among over 500 medical, engineering, economic and humanitarian specialties, see Programs taught in Russian.
By opting for education in Russian during the first year students study at the Foundation course, where for 8-10 months they study the Russian language and other principal subjects required for their further education at university for the speciality of their choice: biomedicine, chemistry, biology; engi-neering and technology, economics, mathematics, physics, computer science and technologies; humani-ties such as history, social studies, literature and others. The curriculum of the Foundation course at university may also include other academic disciplines.
The educational program in English and French includes a mandatory course of the Russian lan-guage that is necessary for the students` communication, adaptation and daily life during their studies and for their access to the multimillion resources of educational literature.
How much do I have to pay for my studies? When should I pay?
Education for foreign citizens at Russian universities is up to 80% subsidized by the Russian Gov-ernment which makes it affordable. Taken into account this sponsorship education in Russia may cost on average from 2500 to 4000 USD per academic year depending on the chosen specialty and lan-guage.
For the exact amount please consult Universities page.
Upon the receipt of the confirmation of your admission you will also get the Admission Letter and the Invoice to make the payment for your first academic year. The payment with this invoice should be made within 30 days from the date of the issue of invoice. Payment after the receipt of entry visa or upon arrival to Russia is IMPOSSIBLE.
Without payment candidate can not receive the Invitation for studies from The Main Department for Migration of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Russian Federation. This invitation is required to obtain Russian study visa.
Where else can I send my application and documents?
Applications and documents may be submitted to different representative offices of RACUS in foreign countries or to RACUS Central Office in Russia.
To have the contact details of RACUS office in your country kindly fill in this form and get the contact details by email.
Are there any age limits for the admission to Russian universities?
The recommended age to apply for Bachelor Degree programs and for medical programs is under 23 years. In exceptional cases applications from older candidates may be considered if they have already received any other education.
Admission to post-graduate programs does not involve any restrictions of the applicant`s age.
I study at university in my home country. Can I transfer to Russian university?
The transfer from university outside Russia to Russian university is not possible according to the Education Law of the Russian Federation. Foreign citizens should apply for the first year at Russian university. Upon admission to the first year foreign students may present their academic transcript that proves the number of years and courses taken at university of home country. A special commission will consider the academic transcript and compare the educational programs, identify the difference be-tween two university programs and make the decision regarding student’s transfer to the year of stud-ies in accordance with the provided documents. Exams in certain subjects are also may be required. Such issues are resolved individually with every candidate.
However you may also apply for the next level of education upon the receipt of higher education diploma at your university. For example, if you have completed a Bachelor’s degree, you can submit your documents and apply for a Master’s degree program at Russian university.
How can I receive Russian study visa?
Once the Admission Letter is issued by RACUS, the Department for Migration of the Main Direc-torate of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Russia begins the procedure of formalization of the Invita-tion for studies which is the main document for obtaining Russian study visa. It takes from 35 to 45 days to make Invitation Letter. It will be mailed to you by express mail only upon the receipt of the full payment for the first academic year according to the invoice.
Upon the receipt of the Invitation Letter you are supposed to submit your documents to the Con-sular Section of the Russian Embassy in your country in order to obtain Russian study visa.
The list of Russian Consular Offices/Embassies and their contacts are available on the web site of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation.
The standard set of documents for the study visa includes the following:
- Invitation Letter for studies (original document)
- International Passport
- Visa Application form
- Colour photo 3,5 x 4,5
- Certificate of absence of HIV infection
- Medical certificate
The average study visa fee is 60 USD.
The average term for issuing study visa is 7 - 14 days.
The list of required documents and fees for Russian study visa may vary from country to country. We advise you to precise the details at the Consular Section of the Russian Embassy in your country or check it on the website visa.kdmid.ru
What kind of services does RACUS offer to international students?
- Consultation regarding the Russian education system, including admission guidelines and regulations for international students, information about students’ accommodation and food, assistance in choos-ing future specialty and university, taking into consideration every student’s interests;
- Preliminary examination of the applicant’s educational documents on the eligibility to study at Russian universities;
- Formalizing the documents to obtain the Invitation Letter to the chosen university at the Main De-partment for Migration of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the cities/regions and sending invitations to the applicants;
- Consultation and assistance to the applicants with applying for Russian study visa;
- Meeting the students at the Russian airports and accompanying them to the city and university of their studies;
- Assistance with the admission to Russian universities for the chosen specialty and degree program: Bachelor of Science, Master of Science, Specialist/Engineer-Specialist, Candidate of Sciences, Doctor of Science;
- Providing accommodation for students in a students’ hostel of the university for the whole period of studies (up to 7 years);
- Assistance in registration at the Main Department for Migration of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Russian cities/regions and sending invitations to the applicants;
- Providing students with free educational literature at university libraries;
- Assistance in obtaining the Certificate of Equivalence of foreign educational documents in the Minis-try of Education and Science of Russia (Rosobrnadzor) which is compulsory for every foreign student to be admitted to any Russian university;
- Monitoring the students’ academic progress and behaviour;
- Communication with the parents and timely reports on the students’ performance or any conduct issues;
- Mentoring and protection of student rights, including support of any kind during the whole duration of their studies in Russia.
All services provided to the international students by RACUS organisation in Russia are free of charge, except for the actual costs of students’ arrival and admission to Russian universities. All the above mentioned services and activities of RACUS organisation are sponsored by Russian state uni-versities members of RACUS Group.
When do my courses start? When should I come for studies?
The students’ arrival is annually scheduled as follows:
- Foundation course: from the 15th of September to the 15th of November;
- English and French Medium programs: from the 25th of August to the 15-25th of October;
- Russian Medium programs (for students fluent in the Russian language): the 20 – 25th of August.
What is legalization of educational documents?
Before arrival to Russia every foreign student should properly legalize the documents of previous education (together with Academic transcript) in the country that issued these documents.
There are two types of legalization: Consular legalization and Apostille (for countries members of the Hague Convention).
Consular legalization includes the following:
- Legalisation seal by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (or by another relevant organisation) in the country that issued the documents.
- Legalisation seal by the Russian Embassy (Consulate General) in the country that issued the docu-ments.
If the country that issued your educational documents is a member of the Hague Convention then only one seal is necessary – Apostille (in most cases it is issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs).
Legalization procedure is applicable to the original educational documents (Certificate and Aca-demic transcript) or to the properly notarized copies.
What should I take with me?
Hand-luggage (usually up to 8 kg):
- folder with all your documents
- laptop/cell phone/tablet PC
- cash money around 500 USD/Euro
Checked-in luggage (please consult the airlines for the number of items and maximum weight – on average this is about 23 kilograms for international and domestic flights).
Students usually arrive for studies when calendar autumn turns into wintertime in Russia. So the students arriving in November are recommended to have proper warm clothing such as winter coats, hats, gloves and winter boots. You should not try to bring all your belongings to Russia! For example, kitchen utensils, food and other items. Clothes and other goods of high quality can be purchased at a much cheaper price in Russia. Take only what you can carry yourself.
Will anyone pick me up from the airport and accompany to the University?
Upon your arrival to Russian airport you will have to pass through the passport control then receive your luggage and get through the customs control. After the customs control you will exit into the Ar-rivals area of the airport where one of our RACUS managers will meet you with a meeting sign “RACUS”. We promptly prepare a guarantee letter proving that RACUS staff will meet you and take to the city and university of your destination. This letter will be sent to the passport and customs control at the international airport two hours prior to your scheduled arrival. As per the current regulations of the Russian border services students cannot be allowed to enter the territory of the Russian Federation in the absence of the official representative meeting them in person with a proper power of attorney issued by the relevant university for every coming student. Please do not come without prior notification of RACUS about your arrival to avoid any trouble at the airport because in the absence of our representative with a properly filled Power of attorney letter that includes the student’s name this foreign student may be asked to go back to his home country on the next available flight (in such cases the travel expenses are to be paid by the student). Thus, every student should have a ticket back home or enough money to purchase such an air ticket.
Please inform us in the contact line below about your flight delay or in case you are late for the flight, lost in the airport or if you have any difficulty.
Upon your arrival RACUS will arrange your transfer from the airport to the city and university of your destination (including the student pick up at the airport of final destination and transfer to the students’ hostel / university hotel), check you in at the hostel and arrange your admission formalities at the university.
How can I contact my parents upon arrival to Russia?
Upon arrival to Russia you will be supervised and assisted on any questions that may arise by RACUS manager who will help you to purchase a SIM card for your cell phone so that you could call your parents. Upon your arrival to Russia RACUS staff will immediately inform RACUS representa-tive in your country who will in his turn inform your parents about your safe arrival, accommodation at students’ hostel, etc.
What documents should be ready before my arrival to Russia?
The documents to be submitted to the university upon the student’s arrival are the following:
- Certificate of secondary education/Diploma of higher education
- The original Certificate of secondary education/Diploma of higher education properly legalized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of your country (or any other organisation as prescribed by your country of residence laws and regulations) and the Embassy of the Russian Federation in the country that issued your educational documents (or with an Apostille for the countries members of the Hague Conven-tion);
- Academic transcript of your Certificate of secondary education/Diploma of higher education with the list of your grades
- The original Academic transcript of your Certificate of secondary education/Diploma of higher educa-tion with the list of your grades, properly legalized with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of your coun-try (or any other organisation as prescribed by your country of residence laws and regulations) and the Embassy of the Russian Federation in the country that issued your educational documents (or with an Apostille for the countries members of the Hague Convention);
- Medical Certificate of general health. The students enrolled for medical specialties should provide an extended health certificate (detailed information to be given by RACUS representative in your coun-try);
- Vaccination certificate or a certificate that includes information about all previously made vaccinations;
- Certificate of absence of HIV infection;
- Certificate of photofluorography and a relevant chest radiography picture;
- 12 photos, size 3 х 4 cm.
How much luggage can I take with me?
It is not advisable for the students to arrive with the luggage weight exceeding 23 kilograms. First-ly, such heavy luggage automatically requires porter services upon arrival which is an extra cost. The majority of students arrive to the international airports of Moscow and then travel to the chosen University in another Russian city by train or plane. Excess baggage is chargeable (on average it costs around 4 Euro per 1 kg). Food and clothes can be purchased in Russia for a reasonable price upon arri-val; our staff is ready to provide assistance to students in the cities of their destination. Even if you pay for excess baggage in the airport upon departure, it will be subject to customs inspection in Russia. Every passenger with over 50 kilograms of luggage has to pay customs duty which is 4 Euro per kg of excess weight (as per the customs regulations in Russia). Bringing food to Russia is prohibited. Formal-ities regarding excess baggage usually take a lot of time (up to 3 hours) as a result student can be late for his transfer, train or flight.
How much money should I have with me?
Upon arrival to Moscow/St. Petersburg airport all students should have (additionally to their bank card) 500 USD/Euro in cash to buy air or train tickets to get to the city of their destination and for other needs during the first month. It is not advisable to carry any valuable items, money and documents in your check-in luggage, please make sure they are safely carried in your hand luggage!
Train and air tickets inside Russia should be paid additionally (unless such costs were includ-ed in your personal invoice)!
Air and train tickets to the city of destination should be purchased by students directly upon their arrival to Russia. Their costs vary from 50 to 350 USD depending on the city of the student’s destina-tion and the mean of transport, air flight or train. Do not hesitate to receive detailed information regarding such costs from RACUS office in your country or RACUS Central Office by e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org before your departure to Russia.
What should I do in the airport upon my arrival to Russia?
- Make sure you did not leave any of your belongings inside the aircraft.
- Fill in your migration card (these forms are usually distributed to passengers before the landing or you may find them in front of the passport control area).
- Pass through the passport control (it may take 20-60 minutes). Remember the name of your destination university (the passport control staff may ask you to tell the city and university of your destination). Print out and prepare beforehand your Admission letter issued by RACUS as it may be required at the passport control.
- Collect your luggage from the baggage carousel. In case any of your luggage items got lost, please ad-dress to the LOST AND FOUND desk nearby the baggage carousel. You will have to fill in a declara-tion form for your lost/damaged luggage.
- Upon exit from the customs area look around to find our representative among the greeters, he or she will be holding a sign “RACUS”.
Once you have received your luggage, there is no need to wait for other students from your group, you may go to the customs control through the green gate (in case you have nothing to declare), and then come out to the Arrivals area. You will see a lot of people meeting passengers with all sorts of signs and boards. Look for our manager with a “RACUS” sign. In case you fail to see our manager, please stay in the arrivals area until they find you, and do not leave the airport, our representative will surely find you! All Russian airports have free Wi-Fi.
For any questions do not hesitate to contact RACUS Central Office
ATTENTION! Do not leave your luggage and personal belongings unattended! Make sure you keep your documents safe so they don’t get lost!
Upon your arrival you are supposed to present your passport together with your visa and migration card to the university passport and visa department within 3 days after you pass the passport control at the Russian airport for your prompt registration at the migration authorities in conformity with Russian legislation. This registration at the migration authorities is not possible without a valid passport and student visa together with a relevant migration card!
Is it difficult to study the Russian language?
Over 350 million people across the world speak Russian. International graduates of Foundation and Russian language courses all round Russia annually join them.
Foundation course is a university course where international students are prepared for their further studies and degree programs at Russian universities. During one academic year (8-10 months), students learn the Russian language and major subjects required for their future specialty: Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics, Physics, Information Technologies and others. The program of the Foundation course is of medium complexity and is designed for the applicants with intermediate knowledge and skills. The students who regularly attend their classes and diligently do their homework normally do not have any issues with their studies and mastering the academic program.
Experience has shown that over 95% of the students successfully complete their Foundation course and are subsequently enrolled for the main program (to the first year of their specialty) in Russian. Upon completion of the Foundation course international students usually demonstrate adequate language skills. They can read and understand the written text, retell the texts and participate in discussions; they have good comprehension of spoken Russian and are ready to engage in a dialogue; they are capable of rendering in writing any texts they read; they can also write down lectures, summarize and make proper notes. Moreover, international students have an opportunity for daily practice of their Russian which is also an important contribution to mastering the language: they speak at the students’ hostel and university, on the streets, in shops etc. Therefore, the Russian language appears not so difficult to learn, nowadays over 310 000 international students from 200 different countries have already become students at Russian universities and are doing great in their studies.
When will I have holidays?
Academic year lasts 10 months: from the 1st of September until the 30th of June.
One academic year consists of 2 semesters. Upon completion of each semester, the students have to take tests and examinations in the subjects they studied.
- The 1st semester: from the 1st of September until the 25th of January.
- The 2nd semester: from the 9th of February until the 30th of June.
There are two types of holidays: winter holidays (2 weeks from the 25th of January until the 9th of February) and summer holidays (2 months from the 1st of July until the 30th of August). Students can choose whether to spend their winter and summer holidays in Russia or to travel to their home country.
Can I work while I study in Russia?
International students willing to work in Russia should receive a relevant permit from the Main Directorate for Migration Affairs of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Russian Federation. The work permit is valid for 1 year and it may be extended for the duration of the employment contract. This permit may be withdrawn and terminated if the student cancels his studies at university.
The work permit can be issued within 10 working days subject to submission of the full set of the following documents to the local office of the Main Directorate for Migration Affairs of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Russian Federation:
- Application form
- Migration card
- Receipt of the payment of the state fee (the state fee is 3500 rubles)
- Employment contract
- HIV-negative certificate, medical certificate confirming that you do not have any contagious diseases and substance addiction
- Reference letter from the university that confirms your intramural student status
However, you cannot rely on any part-time job as a means to cover your living costs. The academic program at Russian universities involves intensive studies with a number of assignments you are supposed to perform outside the classroom so students do not have a lot of free time. Parents (or sponsors) should provide the necessary means and fully cover any costs during the whole period of your staying in Russia as a student.
During the first two years in Russia students are not advised to take any job as they are not sufficiently fluent in Russian and not quite prepared for the life conditions in a new country. Jobs that foreign students may find are usually short-term and occasional, low skilled and not so well paid: at restaurants, cafes, hotels, shops, summer camps for children and suchlike. This kind of earnings can only be considered by foreign students as a way to make some extra pocket money and as an additional opportunity for communication in Russian, to learn local culture and the Russians better; however, it can not be considered as a source of income to cover annual tuition at university, accommodation costs in a students' hostel and life and health insurance fees.
When do I have to pay my tuition?
- The payment for the first year should be made at least 30 days prior to your arrival to Russia for studies; the payment should be made to the bank account according to the invoice
- The tuition for the subsequent years of studies should be paid in full before the 1st of August of the current academic year
In exceptional cases, the student may be allowed to pay his or her tuition and accommodation fee at students’ hostel per semester as follows: 70% (seventy) percent of the tuition for the academic year and relevant accommodation fees should be paid before the 1st of August; and 30% (thirty) percent of the tuition and accommodation fees for the second semester should be paid before the 15th of January.
In case I decide to leave the university or I am expelled from the university, can I receive the money I have paid?
In case of the student’s expulsion from the Foundation course of the university (for any reason), the money paid by the student can not be refunded to the student under any circumstances.
In case of the student’s expulsion (for any reason) from the first semester of the first academic year (from the 1st of September until the 1st of February) of the main program (1-6 years) or of the postgraduate course, the money paid by the student for the relevant academic year in full amount of 100 (one hundred) percent can be partially reimbursed to the student in the amount of 30 (thirty) percent of the paid sum.
In case of the student’s expulsion from the university (for any reason) from the second semester of the academic year (from the 8th of February until the 30th of June) the money paid by the student can not be refunded to the student under any circumstances.
The student’s expulsion date from the University is the date of the University rector’s signature on the Expulsion Order. The money transferred to any insurance companies is non-refundable under any circumstances.
In case of the student’s illness at the time of his or her studies, he or she can be granted an academic leave/medical leave in conformity with the University rules and regulations. In the latter case, the money paid by the student in the relevant academic year may be kept for the next academic year.
I am a student’s parent and I would like to know my child’s academic results. How can I get this information?
You can contact RACUS Central Office at any time by email email@example.com specifying the student’s full name, citizenship and name of the university your child studies at. You may also fill in a form of Parental Control on our website and we will surely inform you of your child’s academic progress and behavior.
Foreign students coming for studies for the first time are issued a single-entry student visa for 90 days. Upon their arrival for studies in Russia, students should submit their documents for visa extension at least 45 working days before the single-entry visa expiry date. Thereafter students will be issued a multi-entry student visa for 1 academic year. For the subsequent years the timely extension of the multi-entry student visa (at least 45 business days before the visa expiry date) should be the student’s responsibility.
To issue a multi-entry student visa the student’s passport should be valid at least 1,5 years from the visa issue date. It is important to keep this in mind and timely make a new passport or extend the passport validity.
Timely extension of the student visa is the foreign student’s responsibility. Student with an expired visa will be subject to a penalty of up to 5000 rubles or deportation and prohibition to enter Russia for five years.
Can I transfer to another Russian university to continue my studies?
The student’s transfer from one Russian university to another is only possible provided that the student fulfills the academic rules and financial obligations. For detailed information, please contact RACUS Central Office.
Is it safe to live in Russia?
Life in Russia is safe as in any other developed country. However, even in the safest areas one has to keep in mind the basic safety precautions to avoid trouble.
In Russia public security is provided by public law enforcement authorities – police that ensures security of both Russian and foreign citizens on the territory of Russia. All university buildings and students’ hostels are day and night supervised by the university security services. In all university buildings and hostels there is a checkpoint. Students enter the university buildings and hostels upon presentation of their student pass that they receive upon their admission to university. As a rule, access to the hostel is available from 6.00 a.m. to 23.00 p.m.
Can I stay and work in Russia after my graduation?
Unfortunately, this is not so easy to accomplish. During studies at Russian university the foreign student stays in the country on a student visa which is only issued for the duration of his or her studies. Upon graduation from the university you cannot stay in Russia and get an employment without a proper work visa (which is issued upon the invitation for work from the employer) or without a proper work permit.
Where will I live during my studies in Russia?
All international students will have a guaranteed a placement in a room for 2-3 students at students' hostel/university guesthouse. Every student will be provided with furniture as prescribed by the local standards (desk, chair, bed, bedside table and wardrobe). The bedding will be also given to every student. As to other items (kitchenware, cutlery, kettle, computer, etc.) students may purchase them at their own expense. Every floor and unit (depending on the type of accommodation) is equipped with toilets and showers with hot and cold tap water. All buildings in Russia including students’ hostels and academic buildings have central heating and the average room temperature inside is about 20-22° C. Every floor has a kitchen where students can cook themselves dishes to their liking. There are cafes, gyms, classrooms, laundry facilities within easy reach from almost all students' hostels/guesthouses.
Students should keep the students' hostels and their rooms clean and respect their neighbors' interests. Common areas (corridors, kitchens, showers and toilets) are cleaned by the hostel staff.
The average cost of accommodation in a students' hostel depends on the city/ university and type of accommodation (students' hostel/ guesthouse) and usually varies from 30 USD to 110 USD per month.
Will I be able to travel to other cities/countries during my holidays?
During winter and summer holidays students can travel across Russia and visit other countries. When planning a trip it is important to keep in mind the requirements of the Russian migration legislation. They are as follows:
- Timely inform your university of your travel plans to make sure that your student visa is valid for as long as required;
- Within 3 days from your return date notify the university of your arrival in order to renew your registration with the migration authorities, which is a mandatory formality upon return from any trips inside and out of Russia.
What is the Certificate of Equivalence?
During the first year at university (the Foundation course) students should undergo at their own expense the procedure of recognition/acceptance of foreign educational documents and receive from Rosobrnadzor (Federal Service for Supervision in Education and Science) a so called Certificate of Equivalence / Nostrification. Such equivalence of foreign educational documents means official recognition and acceptance of the academic value and level of education received in countries outside Russia and reconfirms academic, professional and related rights of the documents holder. The student should submit this Certificate of Equivalence to the university as this document is a mandatory requirement for the student’s admission to the major program (1-6 years) at the university.
RACUS provides students with free information and consultancy services so that they could obtain their Certificate of Equivalence.
How much money does a student usually spend in Russia per month?
To cover the living costs in Russia students usually need on average 300 - 350 USD per month. However, at first it is advisable to have another 500 USD for any extra costs such as arrangement of their comfort at the students' hostel (purchase of dishes and kitchenware, stationary and so on). This is an approximate amount and it depends on the student’s needs. You may spend more or maybe less. Students of Russian universities generally enjoy student's advantages that allow them to save on public transport, leisure and in many other ways. Besides, the majority of universities offer their on-campus sports facilities that students can attend free of charge or at a nominal fee.
Is it mandatory to pay for the life and health insurance? What do I do in case I get sick?
According to the Russian laws, every foreign student should have a medical insurance policy. The insurance policy is issued for 1 year and costs on average from 160 to 250 USD for 1 year. The insurance will be extended annually.
Before the student’s arrival to Russia RACUS will arrange student’s life and health insurance with one of Russian insurance companies. The original insurance policy card will be given to students within three days upon their arrival to Russia. The insurance policy guarantees to the students healthcare services in accordance with the relevant insurance plan within the policy term.
The insurance policy includes telephone numbers that students can call to get an appointment with the doctor. For more details, do not hesitate to contact RACUS office on site for assistance and consultation.
Russian Migration Legislation
For a legal stay in Russia, foreign students should follow the following rules:
- Receive and fill in a migration card when passing through the passport control at the airport.
The migration card is an evidence of your legal crossing the Russian border. Along with the passport, this card is an indispensable document for the foreign citizen’s staying in Russia. The registration with the migration authorities is not possible without this card. The migration card is valid for the whole duration of your stay in Russia. You are supposed to keep it safe with you together with your passport. However, if you leave the country, you are supposed to give it to the passport control officials upon departure, and then fill in a new card upon return.
- The registration with the migration services at university must be carried out within three days upon your crossing the Russian border.
In conformity with the Russian migration legislation, a foreign student should be duly registered with the migration authorities. The university is in charge of this registration, you are supposed to bring the required documents to the Foreign Students Department within 3 days upon your crossing of the Russian border. Afterwards, the university staff will give you the detachable part of the Arrival Notification form (as a proof of your registration) sealed by the Main Directorate for Migration Affairs of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Russian Federation. This form is the documentary evidence of your registration with the migration authorities.
Upon your first crossing of the Russian border RACUS will help you to prepare and submit the full set of the required documents. Later on this registration with the migration authorities should be the foreign student’s responsibility.
In case of any trips around Russia, cheking-in at hotels, departure and return to the country and any change of the personal information, students should submit a new Arrival Notification (registration form) at the relevant department of the University immediately upon return from any trip.
Observance of the migration legislation and registration procedure, including the terms for the paperwork submission and receipt of relevant documents should be the responsibility of the foreign student. Non-observance of the above listed migration regulations and procedures is considered as a violation of the Russian Federation laws and may entail disciplinary and administrative sanctions that may result in a penalty or the student’s expulsion from the university and deportation from the territory of the Russian Federation with the prohibition to enter the country in the future.
What should I do if I lose my passport?
In case of passport loss, the procedure is as follows:
Immediately apply to the police department in your residence area or to the nearest police department in the area where you have presumably lost your document and obtain a certificate of passport loss. This certificate is issued immediately. Your staying on the territory of Russia without this certificate is illegal;
Inform the Foreign Students Department of your university or RACUS organization so that you could be advised on your further actions.
What is the food like in Russia?
All Russian students’ hostels are equipped with kitchen facilities on every floor where students can cook any dishes that they like. There is a wide range of products from all around the world available in Russian shops, so foreign students can stick to the food they used to eat in their home country. It would be useful for the student to learn to cook meals themselves, especially national food, before coming to Russia.
On average students spend on food 250 - 300 USD per month.
Students can also go to student cafes where the average cost of a student lunch (soup, main course and side dish, salad, tea) is 3-5 USD.
What is the weather like in Russia?
The key thing to know about Russian weather is that it is absolutely different depending on the region. RACUS offers education in the cities of the European part of Russia with quite comfortable climatic conditions.
In this part of Russia there are four distinct seasons: summer, autumn, winter and spring. The average outdoor temperature in summertime is +25 C. It becomes colder in autumn: +10 or +15 С. The winter temperature varies from +5 to -10 С. The spring is much warmer and the temperature rises to +10 / +15 С.
The residential and office buildings, students’ hostels have central heating so during the cold season all residential and public premises (average room temperature 20-22 C) as well as public transport are properly heated.
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