Please Note: There are only 2 exchange spaces available for Spring 2018. All students who apply must apply for a back up program.
Is this program right for you?
This program is for students with at an interest in directly enrolling in a Russian university. Students are required to take one Russian language course. The remaining courses will be in English and taken along side Russian and other international students. Students with near fluency in Russian may have the opportunity to take content courses in Russia. It is strongly recommended that students have formally studied Russian for at least one semester before applying.
Students who are successful on this program will be looking for a challenge, be comfortable with a high level of ambiguity and understand the challenges of making new friends in a foreign environment.
Founded in 1944 and operated under the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, The Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO) is one of Russia's most prestigious institutions of higher education. With just over 6,000 students, 1,000 of whom are international, MGIMO is the primary training ground for future diplomats, politicians and business leaders in the region. Alumni include Sergei Lavrov, Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ilham Aliyes, President of Azerbaijan, Grigol Vashadze, former Georgian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Ján Kubiš, former Secretary General of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe.
During their time abroad, students will be studying in the School of Government and International Affairs which is the first school in Russia to offer undergraduate programs taught completely in English. Through this progarm, students will have the opportunity to create their own curriculum from a wide array of courses in economics, international relations, history, political science, and Russian language.
Students usually take from 7 to 9 content courses during the semester in addition to a Russian for foreigners course. If students have a very high level of Russian proficiency, they will be able to take some of their content courses in Russian. Students may also have the opportunity to take a limited number of graduate level courses that are taught in English.
Keep in mind that courses are not guaranteed, and students should have a high level of flexibility in which courses they take at MGIMO; course schedules will be finalized upon arrival in Moscow - not before. MGIMO uses the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS). In order to convert ECTS credit to AU credits, you need to dive by 2 and round up. For example, a course listed as 5 credits at MGIMO would equal 3 credits at AU.
View the Course Equivalency Database to find out which courses on this program have already been equated to AU courses. Please note that you are NOT limited to just these courses. Students will need to request equivalency for courses which have not been previously reviewed. Read more about the course equivalency process and how AU counts study abroad credits on our Courses and Credits page.
With a population of over 12,000,000, Moscow is a chaotic, fast-paced city. It serves as both the political and financial capital of the Russian Federation and is the ideal place for a student interested in Russian politics, culture and business to study. Since the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1990, it has also grown into a much more multiethnic and multinational city with people from all over Russia, the former Soviet Republic, Europe and Asia moving in. As they say in Russia, all roads lead to Moscow.
Housing and Meals
Students will live in university dormitories that are located in three different locations in Moscow. The daily commute could be up to one hour each way. Accommodations are modest but comfortable with two students per room.
Upon acceptance, the international coordinators at the MGIMO will provide students with a visa letter. AU Abroad will distribute the letters to students. Students are responsible for contacting the Russian Embassy or Consulate to find out which additional documents are needed to obtain a student visa.