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Russian Beginners (Year 1) Short Course

Key information

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Covid-19 update: The learning doesn't have to stop, join our online community. We will be delivering courses remotely until further notice. Live tutor support and virtual lessons will take place during advertised teaching hours. The classes are taught in small groups, so you'll get lots of support from your tutor. Book now.

The full beginners course is made up of three 10-week beginners’ modules – part 1, part 2 and part 3. Enrol on the full syllabus (parts 1-3) to gain a complete knowledge of Russian for beginners at the best price. Our teaching takes place one evening a week, ideal for those with various commitments or working full-time.

Why choose this course?

Learn Russian in a relaxed, friendly and informal atmosphere.

Whether you're learning Russian for travelling, working abroad or with foreign companies, the Russian Beginners course will enable you to communicate confidently on a basic level in everyday situations, socialise and not feel out of place in the country you are visiting.

This short course is an introduction to the Russian language and way of life for the purpose of practical communication. Challenging but rewarding, the course is perfectly suited to those looking to develop a basic command of Russian.

The course consists of one evening class a week, for a total of 30 weeks; spread across three modules, which is ideal for those with various commitments or working full-time.

All of our language short courses are taught by qualified native speakers and delivered at City, University of London’s main campus, in the heart of the capital.

Course overview

The Russian Beginners course, based on the communicative approach to learning foreign languages, encourages you to speak Russian starting from lesson one. The course is taught using course books that fully meet the Council of Europe criteria for accreditation at A1 level.

In part 1 you will be covering topics such as the Russian alphabet, grammar, numbers and a workshop to finish off.

Part 2 you will be covering topics such as ordering food, use of different tenses, inviting a friend to a restaurant, likes and dislikes and a workshop to finish off. Finally, in part 3 you will learn room descriptions, talking about your home and hometown, sports you play and a workshop to finish off.

Is it the right level for me?

If you have no prior knowledge of Russian you must start with part 1, or the full syllabus (parts 1-3).

If you have some basic knowledge of Russian and you are already familiar with the content in part 1 you may choose to enrol on part 2 or part 3. See the Eligibility section below for more details.

Please make sure you have the correct level by using our online guidelines.

What will I learn?

What will I learn?

Part 1

Grammatical structures

  • Russian alphabet
  • Masculine and feminine nouns
  • Pronouns
  • Russian alphabet (continuation)
  • Masculine, neuter, feminine nouns
  • Russian alphabet
  • Masculine and feminine nouns, neuter nouns
  • Personal and possessive pronouns
  • Pronouns – formal and informal “YOU”
  • Genitive singular case of masculine and feminine nouns
  • Learning to count from 0-
  • Genitive singular with numbers
  • Consolidation of noun cases
  • Short adjectives
  • Present tense conjugation of the verb - "знать
  • The basic rules of the past tense
  • Conjugation of the verb "работать" и "делать" in Present tense
  • The full present tense forms of verbs
  • Prepositional case.


  • Nationalities
  • Russian names
  • Family
  • Months of the year
  • Numbers
  • Directions
  • Booking into a hotel
  • Traveling.

Part 2

Grammatical structures

  • Adjectives
  • Accusative case
  • Present tense of the verb "говорить"
  • Short form of adjectives (“Going out”)
  • Genitive plural of masculine nouns
  • Plural and singular of nouns
  • Dative singular of nouns
  • Consolidation of conjugation of verbs in present tense
  • The verb to “go”
  • Reflexive verbs
  • Prepositions.


  • Ordering food
  • Countries and languages
  • Leisure time
  • Numbers (continued)
  • Inviting to a restaurant
  • Daily routines
  • Shopping for souvenirs
  • Likes and dislikes.

Part 3

Grammatical structures

  • Instrumental singular of nouns
  • Nouns in dative, instrumental and prepositional plural
  • Declension of personal pronouns
  • Adjectives in the accusative singular
  • The use of dative to express age
  • Consolidation of reflexive nouns
  • The perfective and imperfective aspect of the verbs.


  • Developing vocabulary for describing yourself and your family;
  • Introducing the story of “Ruslan book”
  • Room description in Russian
  • Talking about your home or your hometown
  • Talk about sports and activities
  • Ordinal numbers
  • Tourism.



Prerequisite knowledge

Modules are taught at progressive levels, if you have no prior knowledge you must start at part 1 or enrol on the full syllabus (parts 1-3).

If you wish to join part 2 of the Russian Beginners course, you must have completed part 1 or be familiar with the content taught in part 1, specified in the What will I learn? section.

If you wish to enrol on part 3 of the short course, you must have completed both parts 1 and 2 or be familiar with the content taught in these two modules, found in the What will I learn? section.

Please check your level by using our online guidelines before enrolling.

English requirements

Applicants must be proficient in written and spoken English.

Teaching & assessment

Teaching & assessment

The emphasis in the Beginners Russian course is on listening and speaking. The lessons focus on language that is required in authentic situations.

  • role-playing
  • classroom discussion
  • pair and group work
  • work on pronunciation and intonation
  • grammar in context.

Listening to audio clips and watching videos are an important element in our lessons. More comprehensive grammar exercises and reading texts are generally set as homework.

Your progress will be assessed on an on-going basis through homework and performance in class. You will receive verbal feedback from your lecturer when appropriate and written feedback with your homework. All evaluation will take place in a relaxed and informal setting.

There is no formal assessment and no qualification is issued at the end of the course, but you will be awarded an official City, University of London certificate on completion of the course. You must attend over 70 per cent of the classes to be eligible for the certificate.

Recommended reading

Recommended reading

The tutor will provide materials in class.

Tutor information

  • Navcha Murray

    Navcha Murray is a qualified teacher of Russian with several years' experience teaching at City Lit and City, University of London. She is from Mongolia but was educated solely in Russian up to the age of 18.

Next steps

Continue your journey of Russian with this Lower Intermediate course, which will enable you to communicate confidently in a variety of situations.…