MLR3111 - Advanced Russian Language Skills

2016/7 Module description

StaffDr Emily Lygo - Convenor
Credit Value30
ECTS Value15
NQF Level6
Duration of Module Term 1: 11 weeks; Term 2: 11 weeks;

Module description

In this module you will engage with the spoken and written language, using materials on a range of topics, both in text form, and in the form of video and/or audio recordings, both to improve your comprehension of Russian, and to guide you towards producing your own written texts in Russian, as well as making contributions to oral discussion, conversation, and class presentations in Russian. The emphasis will be on achieving a high level of grammatical accuracy as well as command of idiomatic structures, and on broadening your knowledge of vocabulary across different thematic areas. You will also develop your abilities in translating Russian into accurate and idiomatic English.


This is a module for students who have already successfully completed MLR2001, the second-year Russian language module.

Module aims

The module aims to help you refine your Russian language skills, building on what you have learned at previous stages, and, in many cases, during your third year of study abroad. You will continue to develop your abilities in both producing Russian (orally and in writing) and in understanding Russian (aurally and in writing), and will develop your use of the syntax and lexis of the language by engaging with texts which cover a wide range of topics and styles.

ILO: Module-specific skills

  • 1. apply a knowledge of a broad range of grammatical features of Russian.
  • 2. tackle complex translation passages into and out of Russian, based on a wide range of topics and written in a variety of styles.
  • 3. use bilingual and standard monolingual dictionaries to research conventions of usage, find synonyms and explore nuances of meaning
  • 4. discuss complex topical and abstract issues in spoken Russian, using a broad range of vocabulary and idiom
  • 5. give a structured oral presentation in Russian, addressed to a small group of listeners, and to engage in debate on the issues raised by the presentation
  • 6. demonstrate understanding of spoken Russian from a range of sources, including audio/video recordings

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

  • 7. understand and use in class discussion a broad range of linguistic terminology, using this terminology to a certain extent to conceptualize mistakes in the target language and to identify strategies for improving linguistic accuracy
  • 8. engage critically with the Russian-language media (printed and electronic, including internet, television and radio), using it as a resource for independent study

ILO: Personal and key skills

  • 9. communicate information and arguments of some complexity in the target language
  • 10. express and defend opinions on a wide range of current and abstract issues
  • 11. advance linguistic competence independently (with the potential for learning new languages independently in the future)

Syllabus plan

- One hour per week of prose translation from Russian/guided writing in Russian

- One hour per week of translation from Russian into English

- One hour per week of oral/aural work

- Weekly independent audio-visual comprehension task


Learning and teaching methods: For both translation elements, students are provided with passages for translation, which are either written or prepared for the following class. The work handed in is corrected and marked, and study of the passages is used as a method of improving the linguistic skills. For spoken Russian, students are required to prepare topics, which are then presented to a small group of students for further discussion in Russian under the guidance of the teacher. Aural classes are conducted every three weeks; in the previous week students complete a set independent audio-visual/listening comprehension task. In the following class this task will be discussed in depth by a member of staff who is a native speaker of Russian, and further listening comprehension and/or transcription tasks will be undertaken in class.

Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Scheduled learning and teaching activities22work on translating written Russian text into English, either prepared in advance or unseen
Scheduled learning and teaching activities22activities to develop skills in producing written Russian independently
Scheduled learning and teaching activities22oral and aural work, developing skills in producing and understanding spoken Russian
Guided Independent Study234preparation of set material for classes, completion of formative language work, reading in Russian, listening to Russian

Formative assessment

Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Writing tasks200-300 words1,2,3,8,9,10written and oral
Audio visual tasks20 minutes1,6written and oral
Translations200-350 words2written and oral
Oral presentations10-15 minutes4,5,9,10written and oral

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
audio-visual aural comprehension tests (x2)25One Hour each1,6Written Feedback
oral examination2520 Mins4,5,9,10Written Feedback
exam – translation from Russian to English251.5 Hours2Written Feedback
exam – writing in Russian & translation from English to Russian251.5 Hours1,2,4,9,10Written Feedback

Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)

Original form of assessmentForm of re-assessmentILOs re-assessedTimescale for re-assessment
as above for all elementsAugust Assessment Period

Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

Basic reading:


Borras, F. M. and R. F. Christian, Russian Syntax: Aspects of Modern Russian Syntax and Vocabulary (Oxford : Clarendon Press, 1971)

Daum, E. and W. Schenk, A Dictionary of Russian Verbs: Bases of Inflection, Aspects, Regimen, Stressing, Meanings (Leipzig: VEB Verlag Enzyklopädie, 1974)

Falla, Paul, Boris Unbegaun, and Marcus Wheeler, eds., The Oxford Russian Dictionary, Revised Edition, (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1997)

Offord, Derek, Using Russian: a Guide to Contemporary Usage (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996)

Ozhegov, S. I., Slovar' russkogo iazyka (Moscow: Russkii iazyk, 1991)

Wade, Terence A Comprehensive Russian Grammar (Oxford: Blackwell, 1992)

Wade, Terence, A Russian Grammar Workbook (Oxford: Blackwell, 1997)

Module has an active ELE page?


Indicative learning resources - Web based and electronic resources

Module has an ELE page

Available as distance learning?


Origin date


Last revision date


Key words search

Russian, Language, Oral

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