Russian (JH)

B.A. Honours Bachelor Degree (NFQ Level 8)
4 Years Full-Time
4 Places
CAO Points 371-601 (2023)


Why study Russian?

Russian is the first language of nearly 150 million people; it is spoken by more than 260 million people around the world and is one of Europe’s most important languages. Russia is a significant force in present-day geopolitics and a major player in the global economy, with ties both to Europe and to Asia, and beyond. Russian writers, musicians and artists have made a considerable contribution to European culture; Russian history has helped shape Europe as we know it today. Exploring Russia’s past and present helps understand the interaction between Europe’s eastern and western traditions.

Russian: The course for you?

You will find the Russian programme exciting and rewarding if you enjoy language study, are interested in unfamiliar cultures, have a sense of adventure, and are not afraid of a challenge.

Russian at Trinity

Trinity is the only university in Ireland where you have the opportunity to study Russian to degree level. The scale of the Department of Russian and Slavonic Studies is such that we are able to give students a considerable amount of individual attention and support, and students are able to tailor the programme to develop their particular interests and skills, and to bridge the gaps between the study of Russian and the student’s other area(s) of study.


The pathways available are Single Honours, Major with Minor and Joint Honours. There may also be an opportunity to take this subject up as a New Minor Subject from second year.

Graduate skills and career opportunities

Career paths followed by recent graduates are often ones where Russian-language competence is directly relevant. These include arts and media; education; business, finance and marketing; civil and public service; international organisations (UN, EU, NGOs) and diplomacy; journalism and tourism. Alternatively, each year several graduates will opt to pursue further postgraduate study in Ireland or abroad.

Advanced knowledge of a less-studied language like Russian, as well as the transferable skills (analytical and critical thinking, written and oral presentation skills) you will acquire in the study of the history, culture and literature of Russia, is generally a very attractive combination for prospective employers, even for career paths where Russian may not be directly involved in your day-to-day work.

Your degree and what you’ll study

At entry, Russian must be combined with one other subject. In later years, you will be able to select additional subjects and electives

Most students start Russian as complete beginners, and take an intensive first-year language course (with six hours of language classes per week). Special provisions are made for students with prior knowledge of Russian (native, near-native speakers, those who have passed Russian in the Leaving Certificate or have taken another entrance qualification in Russian).

In addition to language study, you will take modules covering aspects of Russian literature, Russian history and Russian culture, society and politics. In later years, you will also have the option to study a second Slavonic language (Polish, Bulgarian or Croatian).

First and second years

In the first and second years, classes cover three main areas:

  1. Russian language: these classes help develop fluency in reading, writing, speaking and listening, and build the foundation for more advanced language study in the third and fourth years. 
  2. Russian cultural and literary studies: you will be introduced to central figures and major topics in Russian literary and cultural history. You will progress from reading literary texts mainly in translation to tackling key works by Russian writers in the original Russian.
  3. Central, East European and Russian area studies: in the first year, you will take a survey course addressing the geopolitical space of Central and Eastern Europe. Europe in the second year; the focus is exclusively on Russia, when you will follow a course of lectures in Russian on aspects of contemporary Russian society, politics and culture.

In the first and second years, there are approximately ten hours of classes per week, divided between language work and literary, cultural and area studies.

Third and fourth years

In addition to advanced language study, the third and fourth years of your course offer a wider range of module choices, allowing you to choose options that reflect your own particular interests. These include more specialised study of Russian literature and culture, history of Russia and the Soviet Union, Russian society and politics, and a second Slavonic language (Bulgarian, Croatian or Polish). If you elect to study Russian in your final year, you will also undertake a Capstone project on a subject of your own choice.

At all levels, you will be assessed by a combination of continuous assessment and exams. We use a mix of traditional and innovative continuous assessment methods: essays, project work, presentations, book reviews and dossiers, podcast creation. Language modules are traditionally assessed by written, oral and aural examinations. Final year students also write a Capstone project.

There are QQI/FET routes available for this course. Please see for details.

Click here for further information on modules/subject.

Study abroad

A year or semester studying abroad is one of the highlights of a student’s Trinity experience, and immersing oneself in the language and culture is also one of the most valuable ways of achieving fluency when you are studying a language. Single Honours students have a compulsory third year of study abroad and other students are encouraged to spend a year or a semester in their third year in one of our partner universities. At a minimum, you will be required to spend two months in a Russian-speaking country prior to taking your final exams. We currently have exchange agreements with Moscow State University as well as close connections with other universities and institutes in Moscow, St Petersburg and in a number of provincial towns.

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Course Details


B.A. Honours Bachelor Degree (NFQ Level 8)

CAO Information

CAO Points 371-601 (2023)

Number of Places

4 Places
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Admission Requirements

Leaving Certificate:

H4 in Russian or, for beginners, in a language other than English

Advanced GCE (A Level):

Grade C in Russian or, for beginners, in a language other than English

Course Fees

Click here for a full list of undergraduate fees.


To apply to this course, click on the relevant Apply Link below

EU Applicants

Read the information about how to apply, then apply directly to CAO.

    Non-EU Applicants

    Advanced Entry Applications

    Read the information about how to apply for Advanced Entry, then select the link below to apply.

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