Academic Year and language of Instrcution in Russia

Russian academic year starts on 1st September 1st which is known as the Knowledge Day, and lasts till 25th May known as The Last School Bell Day. The educational year is divided into four terms / quarters. There are holidays of one to two weeks that separate each term. All public schools usually follow holidays as declared by the Ministry of Education and Science each year.


Generally, Tthe holidays are as follows:
  • Autumn (Fall) Holidays – usually 8 days in November
  • Winter Holidays – 12-15 days in December/January
  • Spring Holidays – typically 8 days in March
  • Summer Holidays – mid-June to the end of August

Schools run from Monday to Friday starting from 8:00/9:00 a.m. till 14:00/15:00 p.m. Examinations are held in the month of June.

University Calendar:

The academic year at the universities consist of 42 educational weeks and 10 weeks of holidays. It is divided into two semesters. The first is the Autumn Semester from 1 September till January 2/25. The second is the Spring Semester starting from February 9 till June 30 or July 4/5. Some Russian universities exclude the exams sessions, and the academic year consists of 17 educational weeks followed by a two-week holiday and 25 educational weeks followed by an eight-week summer holiday.

Language of Instruction

The primary language of instruction is Russian. Minority languages are learnt at school by approximately 6% of the students. Some higher education institutes use Tatar as a language of instruction along with Russian. The State educational standards require the study of Russian in all recognized education institutions. However it is not compulsory in pre-school institutions. The citizens of Russia have the right to receive basic education in their native languages. They can choose languages of instruction within the range of possibilities offered by the educational system.

Foreign students seeking higher education in Russia, have to spend an extra year to learn Russian language as most of the subjects are taught in that language.
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