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Russian Literature and Language

Russian literature and language programs prepare students for a variety of jobs where employers value fluency in a foreign language, as well as critical thinking, research and writing skills. Read on to learn more about the education and career options for Russian literature and language enthusiasts.

Is Russian Literature and Language for Me?

Career Overview

Russia has a rich, centuries-old culture and significant literary legacy, and serves as home to one of the ten most-spoken languages in the world. A degree in Russian literature and language will allow you to gain a deep understanding of Russian literature, culture and society. Rigorous study of literature is paired with intensive language training in many programs. Courses within this field include Russian culture, business, politics, literature and film. Russian literature and language degrees are awarded at the bachelor's, master's and doctoral degree levels. Many degree programs require a semester studying abroad as a part of the coursework.

Career Options

Graduates of Russian literature and language degree programs are prepared for careers in government, international business, translation, consulting and teaching. You could go on to study literature or linguistics in graduate school or enter law school.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), postsecondary foreign language and literature teachers in May 2013 had a mean annual wage of $66,300; translators and interpreters averaged $47,920 per year. The BLS also reports that the number of job openings for interpreters and translators is expected to increase by a much-faster-than-average rate of 46% nationwide between 2012 and 2022; college and university language and literature professors will see a 15%, or faster-than-average, growth in employment opportunities during the same 10-year period (www.bls.gov).

How Can I Work in Russian Literature and Language?

Bachelor's Degree Programs

A Bachelor of Arts in Russian Studies will provide a solid foundation in Russian language, civilization and culture. These undergraduate programs teach you about the artistic, religious and social events that have shaped Russia's past and present. In addition, you will be able to identify current trends in Russian politics, literature and culture. You must obtain an advanced level of competency in the Russian language to be able to pursue more advanced degrees.

Master's Degree Programs

A Master of Arts in Russian could include courses in art and architecture, poetry, theatre and literature. You may also study the World Wars and the Holocaust. As the programs tend to be interdisciplinary in nature, you might also find topics in history, government, economicsand anthropology. Individual programs may allow for a non-thesis or thesis track. Critical writing, oral presentation and language skills are developed through a detailed curriculum with a focus on research.

Doctoral or Dual Degree Programs

Dual degrees, available at some universities, can culminate in a Master of Russian Studies and Juris Doctor (J.D.). The study of Russian language and culture combined with a law degree may qualify you for an international position in the public or private sector. Doctoral degrees in Russian literature are also available and require researching, writing and defending a dissertation. Prerequisites typically an advanced knowledge of the Russian language.