EDUCATION IN RUSSIA
Secondary education is mandatory in Russia. Children start school at the
age of 6 and finish at 17 . As a rule, a child attends the school located
in the neighborhood,the one which is the closes to home . However , there
in big cities there are also so-called "special" schools , offering more
in-depth studies of the major European languages ( English , French, or
German), or the advanced courses in physics and mathematics, and children
attending one of these may have to commute from home. There are no school
buses in Russia.
The first stage of education is elementary school for grades 1 through 4.
The second is secondary school for grades 5 through 9 . Upon graduation
from secondary school ( which is not the equivalent of having completed
their secondary education ) , students are given the choice of either
continuing to attend the same school (high school; grades 10 and 11 ), or
entering a vocational school or trade school. Both vocational school and
trade schools are meant to provide one , long with the certificate of
secondary education, with a number of useful skills ( e.g. , those of an
electrician, technical, or computer operator ).One attends the former for
two years, and the latter for three or four.
Haveing completed one's secondary education, one can either become part
of work force or go on to college ( " institution of higher learning " ).
There are universityes and so-called "institutes" in Russian . The former
stress a more teoretical , fundamental approach to education , while the
latter are more practice oriented.
There are no medical schools or departments with in the structure of
Russian universitys . Future doctors attend medical institutes. There are
no degrees in Russian equivalent to those of bachelor's or master's.
Students spend approximately five years in college or six in a medical
To be admited to an institution of higher learning , one has to pass a
series of oral and written tests. Grades in the certificate of secondary
education are also taken account.
Entry to higher education is quite competitive. Some college departments
( philologist,foreign languages-especially English,law, journalism ) have
dozens of applicants for one prospective student's position. The same is
true of medical and theatre institutes.
Up to the present, neither college students nor schoolchildren have had
any say in the selection of courses they had to take. Everyone has
studied according to uniform series of guide lines approved by the
Ministery of Higher Education . Evidently , this situation is going to
change in the near future.
Education in Russia has until recently been free on all levels. College
students with good grades were rewarded with a modest stipend . All
institutions of higher learning were subsidized by the government . Now
that the country is changing to a market-place economy, the system of
education is also bound to undergo profound changes . The first private
scholls , gymnasiums and lycees, have already been founded in Moscow and
St. Petersburg , in an attempt to revive the pre-1917 traditionals of
Russian educational system with its high standards of excellence.