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Education in Russia

Kruzenshtern, training ship of the Russian Navy (2009)
Kruzenshtern, training ship of the Russian Navy (2009)

Nowadays, some key terms are evoked in Germany when Russia is mentioned: Pussy Riot, Gazprom, "flawless democrat". In 2008, the former President and Nobel Prize winner Mikhail Gorbachev published an open letter taking a stand against biased pictures of Russia. Education Worldwide aims to add another dimension to the perception of Russia and presents a web dossier with an overview of the education system of Russia. We have compiled sources on the following aspects:

We wish you a good time browsing these resources!

Your Education Worldwide team


General Information on Education

A photo of the Lomonosov Moscow State University
Lomonosov Moscow State University

The education system in Russia is structured into four areas: general school education, vocational education and training, higher education and postgraduate education. As a rule, children are enrolled at the age of seven but early enrolment is possible at the age of six.
Four years of primary education are succeeded by five years of general education. Afterwards, students will either attend a technical college or upper secondary education for two years. A general school leaving exam at the end of upper secondary education is comparable to "Abitur" in Germany. School education and one study course at a public university are free of charge. Private universities charge tuition fees and students must pay for a second course.
The strong emphasis that has traditionally been placed on science subjects is still recognizable today, even in collaborations with Germany or other BRICS states.
Since the end of the Soviet era, the education system has been re-organised. The Education Act of 1992 with its liberal and market-oriented approach remains effective. In the 1990s, the education sector persistently lacked funding. A modernisation was begun by the presidency of Vladimir Putin concerning adjustment of economy to altered circumstances and corresponding educational reform. Instead of being centralised and ideologically founded, education was now to be adapted to individual demands of students. Now, basic skills in economics were taught. - This had not been on the Soviet agenda.
Challenges still remain in some areas. Even though the ratio of academics has trebled since 1990, Russian scientists and researchers have not increased their publishing activities in international journals. Furthermore, no or only a limited number of Russian institutions can be found among the top positions in international rankings.


Russian Federation The website which is provided by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), provides a broad overview of research and education in Russia, including information on statistics, educational reports, policy or cooperation with Germany and other countries. Additionally, you will find basic country data.
[Abstract: Editors of [...]


Russian Federation The website LIPortal (Country Information Portal) is provided by the German Society for International Cooperation (GIZ). Under the category "society and culture" (Gesellschaft und Kultur) you will find an overview over the Russian educational system and important special issues and developments: Development of higher education, challenges and [...]


Russian Federation The country dossier for Russia, compiled by the International Bureau of Education of the Unesco (IBE), provides information on statistics (from the World Data on Education - WDE), national education reports, education plans and policies, a bibliography (partly with fulltexts) and links to other sources. [Abstract: Editors of Education Worldwide]


Russian Federation; Germany The website of the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) provides ample information on academic exchange and cooperation with Russia: information on figures and facts of the Russian education market, on scholarships (for Germans who want to go to Russia and Russians who want to get to Germany), on project aids and cooperation in higher education, [...]


Russian Federation; Germany In the section "Foreign & European Policy", the Federal Foreign Office of Germany provides basic information on different countries, amongst others on their education systems. This text about Russia provides a brief introduction to the current developments in education in Russia. [Abstract: Editors of Education Worldwide]

Die vorliegende Publikation soll " einen generellen Überblick über die wichtigsten Organisationen und Strukturen in der russischen Wissenschaftslandschaft bieten". Dieser Überblick ist in folgende Kapitel untergliedert: 1 RUSSISCHE FORSCHUNGS- UND BILDUNGSPOLITIK; 2 DER STAATSHAUSHALT DER RUSSISCHEN FÖDERATION FÜR WISSENSCHAFT UND BILDUNG; 3 DAS MINISTERIUM FÜR BILDUNG [...]


The following publication has a chapter "Overview over the Russian Education System" (only in German)

Die vorliegenden drei Länderstudien wurden im Rahmen der Programmentwicklung für diesen Bereich gefördert. Annegret Wulff hat 2006 im Auftrag des Deutsch-Russischen Forums e.V. Rahmenbedingungen, Akteure und Ansätze für Demokratiebildung und demokratische Schulkultur in Russland untersucht. Stephan Malerius recherchierte für die Europäische Austausch GmbH im selben Jahr [...]

Im ersten Teil der Studie über das Bildungswesen der Russischen Föderation geht die Autorin auf die historischen und gesellschaftlichen Hintergründe, die Reform- und Innovationsbewegungen seit dem Umbruch und auf soziopolitische, sozioökonomische und soziokulturelle Rahmenbedingungen ein. Anschließend werden aktuelle Leitvorstellungen, gesetzlichen Grundlagen, Aspekte der [...]


Educational Policy (Ministries, Authorities & further National Bodies)


Russian Federation Unfortunately, the English version of the homepage of the Russian Ministry of Education and Sciences only has some very basic information. An <a href=http://eng.mon.gov.ru>older English website version (2004-2010)</a> has some more information available.
The Russian language version consists of a well arranged list of links offering [...]


Russian Federation The database Planipolis provides official fulltext documents on educational policy and planning from UNESCO member states. For Russia you can find documents starting in the year 2000. Planipolis is provided by the UNESCO International Institute for Educational Planning (IIEP). [Abstract: Editors of Education Worldwide]


Russian Federation The Russian "Federal Institute for Educational Development" (FIRO) was created in 2005, by way of merging several former institutes (Research Institute of Higher Education, Institute of General Education, Professional Development Institute Education, Institute for Development of vocational education, the Institute of National Education Problems). [...]


Russian Federation NIC ARM is the national Russion centre for scientific accreditation and mobility. The website provides information on legal frameworks, accreditation centres in other countries (and Europe, ...), about political agreements on the recognition of educational certificates, about accreditation procedures and criteria, about quality assurance, about officially [...]


Educational Reports, Statistics, Leistungsstudien

Photo of a school in St. Petersburg, featuring several murals commemorating the October Revolution.
School in St. Petersburg, featuring several murals commemorating the October Revolution


Russian Federation The Federal State Statistics Service offers key figures to the number of the various education facilities and pupils/students. A commentary about the methodological guidelines is attached. [Abstract: Editors of Education Worldwide]


Russian Federation; international The Russian Center for Educational Quality Assessment provides ample information about and data from international assessments like TIMSS, PISA,PIRLS,CIVIC, SITES, IAEP II as well as from some national assessments - unfortunately, this information is available only in English. Furthermore, you will find the presentations of an international [...]

This paper uses two large multi-country datasets on educational scores PISA and TIMSS to examine the performance of Russia in comparative light as well as the factors associated with differences in educational outcomes in Russia. Despite the perception of a positive educational legacy, Russian scores are not stellar and have mostly deteriorated. Using an education production [...]


Russian Federation The Unesco Institute for Statistics (UIS) provides the most recent basic data on education in Russia. You will find information on the following issues:
* General information
* Education System
* Participation in education
* Progression and completion in education
* Education [...]


Associations and Professional Organisations


Russian Federation "The academy is supposed to be a link between basic research and applied sciences on the one hand, and education, psychology and adjacent disciplines on the other hand. Moreover it shall help to transfer basic educational assumptions to practical school and professional training."
The website, which is available only in Russian, [...]


Russian Federation The website provides current information about the activities of the Russian Education Union. Only in Russian. [Abstract: Editors of Education Worldwide]


Russian Federation "The Russian Academy of Sciences (RAN) is a network of Russian scientists and scientific research institutes. With the science and research organisation run by the Academy, it constitutes the main center of basic research in the fields of natural and social sciences in Russia." See also information on the adopted <a [...]


Russian Federation The website of the Russian Society of Teachers of Russian Language and Literature provides information about its activities, proceedings of conferences, information on published journals and others. The website is available only in Russian. [Abstract: Editors of Education Worldwide]


German Commitment in Russia


Russian Federation; Germany The portal of the International Office of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) supports the German-Russian cooperation in education, research and innovation. You will find information on the political framework for the cooperation, on means of conveyance, on education and research projects and others. [Abstract: Editors of [...]

Door of a German-Russian school. There is a sign on the door saying 'gym hall' in both languages.
German-Russian School in Siberia


Russian Federation; Germany Even if this site is provided by the same authors and under almost the same name with the same categories as the <a href=http://www.drportal.pt-dlr.de>"DR-Portal"</a>, the content itself is different. Additonally to the categories "Parnership, Education, Research and Innovation", a focus is on the [...]


Russian Federation; Germany This website of the German Ministry for Education and Research provides information on the official cooperation in education and research between Germany and Russia. Among others, this includes information on intergovernmental negotiations, on the political framework for scientific and technological cooperation, on the German-Russian Year of [...]


Russian Federation; Germany The website provided by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) informs about political framework for scientific and technological cooperation, key areas and highlights of bilateral cooperation and funding for collaborations with Russia. [Abstract: Editors of Education Worldwide]


Russian Federation; Germany This website provides information on the official cooperation in education and research between Germany and Russia. Among others, this includes information on funding opportunities for Russia, on the political framework, on highlights of the bilateral cooperation as well as its priorities. Additionally, you will find some official documents and [...]


Germany; Russian Federation The German House for Research and Innovation (DWIH) in Moscow act as forum for exchange and cooperation in science and research between Russia and Germany. The website provides ample information on research and innovation in Russia and Germany, on events and projects, on partner organisations as well as science news. [Abstract: Site editor’s [...]


Russian Federation; Germany The German Research Foundation (DFG) gives grants for research projects and coordinates cooperations of researchers worldwide. The website provides information on current news and reports as well as tasks and contacts of the office. "For decades [the DFG] has been coordinating an intense scientific exchange with Russia and supports the [...]


Research Literature on Education in Russia

The German Education Portal provides an integrated search over several databases in Germany and two international databases containing literature from the educational research. [Abstract: Editors of Education Worldwide]

The German Education Portal provides an integrated search over several databases in Germany and two international databases containing literature from the educational research. [Abstract: Editors of Education Worldwide]


Russian Federation The Russland-Analysen / Russian Analytical Digest are published like an e-journal in German and English. You will either find single articles or whole special Issues dealing with educational issues in Russia. [Abstract: Editors of Education Worldwide]


Russian Federation; Eastern Europe; Belarus; Central Asia This sub-category of the OSTEUROPA (Eastern Europe) magazine´s website provides a list of articles published on the topics of education and research, including abstracts. The articles themselves are subject to a fee. [Abstract: Editors of Education Worldwide]

Die vorliegende Publikation soll " einen generellen Überblick über die wichtigsten Organisationen und Strukturen in der russischen Wissenschaftslandschaft bieten". Dieser Überblick ist in folgende Kapitel untergliedert: 1 RUSSISCHE FORSCHUNGS- UND BILDUNGSPOLITIK; 2 DER STAATSHAUSHALT DER RUSSISCHEN FÖDERATION FÜR WISSENSCHAFT UND BILDUNG; 3 DAS MINISTERIUM FÜR BILDUNG [...]


Russia`s BRICS Cooperations


China; Russian Federation This chronology of China-Russia cooperation from 1999-2002 is provided by the Chinese TV channel CCTV. Amongst others, it mentions the "Sino-Russian Committee of Cooperation in Education, Culture, Health and Sports", which took place in december 2000, as well as the following meetings. The last one took place in 2012, it is sometimes also [...]

Blackboard with Russian words on it in a primary school in Yaroslavl, Russia (2009).
In a primary school in Yaroslavl, Russia (2009).
Copyright: Elinalipona, Cats, cut by N. Cohen CC BY-NC-SA 2.0


Russian Federation; India The Centre provides inhabitants of various cities of India with the opportunity to learn about the Russian language, art, culture and science (however, science plays a minor role). It provides a library of Russian literature, including Russian films, contact to the Institute of Russian language, a bureau of translation, and various other opportunities [...]


Russian Federation; India The "non-commercial partnership ‘Russian-Indian Scientific Technological Centre’ was established by the Heads of the Russian Federation and the Republic of India […] in 2007. (...) The main goals of [the] Centre establishing [are]:
- participation in developments and provision of services in the field of fundamental and [...]


India; Russian Federation The Russia & India Report is part of the news portal ´´Russia Beyond the Headlines´´ that is internationally orientated and published by the Russian government’s daily newspaper, the Rossiyskaya Gazeta. The linked extract concerns especially ´´Indo-Russian Cooperation´´ on focused topics of the portal: politics, business and culture and [...]


Brazil; international; China; India; Russian Federation "Ciência sem Fronteiras" (Science Without Borders) is a broad Brasilian scholarship programm. It aims at promoting up to 100,000 Brasilian students until 2014/2015 and helping them to spend part of their studies in a foreign country.The website provides information on the scholarship programm and about partner [...]


Further Information on Russia


Russian Federation; Belarus; Czech Republic; Poland; Ukraine; Hungary; Eastern Europe The OWWZ provides information for researchers as well as students. You will find information on relevant courses, cooperation in research projects, networks and web portals, research promotion opportunities and more. The portals and networks include: German-Russian Cooperation Network [...]


Russian Federation The BQ portal serves in assessing foreign professional qualifications. It provides profiles of particular countries or professions that contain information about foreign vocational training systems and occupational qualifications. Beyond this, there is background information about the assessment practice in Germany, opportunities to exchange and connect [...]


Russian Federation The website of the teacher´s newspaper provides information about the Russian education sector from the perspective of and with the focus on teachers. [Abstract: Editors of Education Worldwide

Last Update: 06.04.2016  -  N. Cohen ; D. Häußer;

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