The Master of Arts Program in Russian and Slavonic Studies offers advanced study in the culture of Russia and Eastern Europe, spanning a variety of interrelated fields ­ literature, history, religion, philology, philosophy, and fine arts. Through two years of coursework, all students will receive training in the theory and history of Russian language and culture; beyond this, they will choose to concentrate either on literary and artistic studies, or on the socio-political disciplines.

Students may go on to careers in a number of fields, including government work and international business; they will also be prepared to continue their studies at the doctoral level.

The library of the University of Missouri is particularly strong in Russian history and literature. We are also part of a consortium that provides quick access to the holdings of many other major academic and public libraries.

Qualified graduate students may have the opportunity to work as teaching assistants in language, literature, or culture courses. Applicants must have an undergraduate degree from an accredited institution of higher learning, with a Russian major or minor and a grade point average of B or higher in the last 60 hours of study.

Degree Requirements

Students must complete a minimum of 30 hours of graduate-level courses with a GPA of B or higher. In accordance with the Office of Graduate Studies policy, no fewer than 24 of these must be Russian and Slavonic Studies courses at the 7000 or 8000 level, with at least 12 at the 8000 level. In addition, students must demonstrate adequate language skills in English and Russian.

Financial Support

Incoming graduate students are offered paid positions as Teaching Assistants on a competitive basis.

Deadline for Teaching Assistantships: to be automatically eligible for a teaching assistantship, your application must be received by January 1.

Teaching assistants (TAs) are normally appointed for one academic year (two semesters / nine months). The Fall Semester runs from late August to mid-December; the Spring Semester from mid-January to mid-May. TA appointments are normally renewed for the second year of study when teaching and progress toward the degree are satisfactory. Appointments after the second year may be available in special cases, depending upon departmental needs and resources. The TA position provides a stipend of approximately $16,400/year. In addition, fees for courses taken toward the MA are waived for TAs.

The Graduate School offers several valuable fellowships for which the department may nominate incoming students. In addition, if you apply by November 30, additional funding may be available (on a competitive basis). Moreover, the department offers competitive grants to support graduate students’ professional development.

Admissions Process

BASIC REQUIREMENTS: Applicants to the graduate program in Russian must have an undergraduate degree from an accredited college or university or the equivalent, a GPA of B or higher on the last 60 hours of the undergraduate course of study and an undergraduate major in Russian or the equivalent. Applicants must also have excellent language skills in both Russian and English. The department reserves the right to evaluate the work presented for admission and to determine how the student may make up for any background deficiencies.

DEADLINE: Non-US citizens and non-US residents should apply by January 1, as well as those wishing to be considered for teaching assistantships.

Apply online through the Office of Graduate Studies 

  • The University requires a $65 fee and one set of transcripts from each college or university you have attended. 

The following items are needed to complete your application for the MA. They should be uploaded via the Graduate Studies online application system. (Your application cannot be read until all of these materials have been received.)

  • Two letters of recommendation from college- or university-level instructors.
  • One transcript from each colleges or universities you have attended. (As part of the application submission process, all applicants are required to upload unofficial copies of all post-secondary transcripts to the online application. Official transcripts are only required if accepted by the academic program.)
  • Official Results of English Proficiency Exams (International applicants only)
  • Statement of Interest (approximately 500 words) addressing the following questions:
    • What draws you to the program and the subject matter we teach?
    • What specific background do you have that prepares you for our program?
    • How does our program fit in with your larger plans or goals for further academic study and/or career?”
  • Resume/CV

The following items are optional and may also be uploaded via the Graduate Studies portal (see link above).

  • Writing sample

Director of Graduate Studies in Russian and Slavonic Studies:
Martha Kelly

Administrative Assistant:
Christine Todd