MA Chinese and Russian Studies
UCAS code: BR37
Duration: 4 years
School: Literatures, Languages and Cultures
College: Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences
Introducing MA Chinese and Russian Studies
The combination of Chinese and Russian Studies is designed to develop your interest, and complex knowledge and understanding, of the countries in which these two world languages are spoken, including their history, literature, culture and social issues.
A knowledge of Chinese language and culture is increasingly important as China becomes a bigger global player, economically and politically. China currently has the largest population in the world and the world's second largest economy.
Russia is the world’s largest country and has one of the most used languages in the world. After a period of political, social and economic transformation, it is playing an increasingly important role in contemporary global politics.
Russian studies will give you a solid understanding of the Russian language and culture. You will study Russian literature, art, music and film and the country’s political history.
Graduate employers recognise the importance of both languages and the need for a broad cultural education alongside language skills. Graduates will be capable of acting as bridges of understanding and conduits of knowledge between Chinese, Russian, and British cultures.
You will study Chinese 1, an introduction to modern spoken and written Chinese, and Modern China in Literature and Film.
If you have no previous knowledge of Russian you will take Russian Studies 1A, an intensive beginners’ Russian course. If you have studied the language before, you will take Russian Studies 1B which provides an advanced Russian language component. Both of these courses include a unit on Russian culture.
After completing Year 1 you have the opportunity to take a summer language course in St Petersburg, Moscow or Riga.
You will continue to learn Chinese language and you will explore Chinese culture further.
You will also continue to study Russian language, and you will also take a course on 19th- and 20th-century Russian literature.
In Year 3 you will spend time studying in a university in Taiwan or China as well as in a Russian-speaking country, either studying at a university or on a work experience placement.
You will continue to study Chinese language alongside your choice of courses in film, politics, modern and pre-modern history, literature, philosophy and economic history.
You will also develop advanced language skills in spoken and written Russian and choose a specialist course on Russian culture or society.
Find out more about the compulsory and optional courses in this degree programme.
To give you an idea of what you will study on this programme, we publish the latest available information. However, please note this may not be for your year of entry, but for a different academic year.
The majority of the teaching takes place in and around the School of Literatures, Languages & Cultures, in the University's Central Area. You will have access to the University's libraries and computer facilities and the School's language labs.
During Year 3, you will spend a minimum of 30 weeks on approved work or study placement in countries relevant to the languages studied.
Students studying more than one language must complete a minimum of eight weeks in each country.
How will I learn?
Most of the cultural courses are taught through lectures and tutorials. Languages are taught in small classes by Chinese or Russian speakers and also involve the use of computer-assisted learning.
How will I be assessed?
You will be assessed by a combination of exams, class exercises and coursework.
Find out more about this programme's aims, what you will learn, how you will be assessed and what skills and knowledge you will develop.
To give you an idea of what to expect from this programme, we publish the latest available information. However, please note this may not be for your year of entry, but for a different academic year.
Studying a language to degree level, especially when you spend a year abroad as part of your studies, gives you a set of skills and life experiences highly prized by employers. Graduates are in high demand in a wide variety of sectors, including the media, commerce, industry, and the civil service.
Many Chinese-speaking graduates are currently recruited by companies based in East Asia, an increasingly powerful player in the global economy, but with Scotland's strategy to enhance engagement with China, opportunities for employment are increasing closer to home too. These include careers in translation/interpreting and education.
Opportunities for Russian-speaking graduates, both at home and abroad, are many, varied and steadily expanding. They include business, journalism, culture, defence, publishing, translation and law.
There are also opportunities to continue studying at postgraduate level. Year 4 in particular will focus on developing the research skills you’ll need if you choose this path.
Standard entry requirement
The standard entry requirement is:
- SQA Highers: AAAA - AABB by end of S5. If you haven't achieved this by the end of S5 we may consider your application based on a strong performance in S6. A minimum of BBB must be achieved in one year of S4-S6. (Revised 21/06/2019 from 'AAAB - AABB'.)
- A Levels: AAB - ABB. (Revised 21/06/2019 from 'ABB'.)
- IB: 43 points (grades 776 at HL) - 34 points (grades 655 at HL). (Revised 21/06/2019 from '38 (666 at HL) - 34 (655 at HL)'.)
Minimum entry requirement
The minimum entry requirement for widening access applicants is:
- SQA Highers: ABBB by end of S6, with a minimum of BBB achieved in one year of S4-S6.
- A Levels: ABB.
- IB: 34 points (grades 655 at HL).
The grades used to meet our entry requirements must include:
- SQA: Higher: Chinese at grade B. National 5: English at grade C.
- A Levels: Chinese or Russian at grade B. GCSEs: English at grade C or 4.
- IB: HL: Chinese or Russian at grade 5. SL: English at grade 5.
Please note that the Chinese programmes involve beginners language study and are not suitable for native or near-native speakers.
We welcome applications from students studying a wide range of international qualifications.
We welcome applications from mature students and accept a range of qualifications.
You must demonstrate a level of English language competency at a level that will enable you to succeed in your studies, regardless of your nationality or country of residence.
SQA, GCSE and IB
For SQA, GCSE and IB students, unless a higher level is specified in the stated entry requirements, a pass is required in English at the following grades or higher:
SQA National 5 Grade C
SQA Standard Grade 3
SQA Intermediate 1 Grade A
SQA Intermediate 2 Grade C
GCSE Grade C or 4
Level 2 Certificate Grade C
IB Standard Level Grade 5 (English ab initio is not accepted for entry)
English language tests
We accept the following English language qualifications at the grades specified:
IELTS Academic module overall 6.5 with 5.5 in each component
TOEFL-iBT 92 or above with 20 in each section
Cambridge English: Advanced or Proficiency overall 176 with 162 in each component
PTE Academic: Total 61 with at least 51 in each "Communicative Skills" section
Trinity ISE: ISE II with a distinction in all four components
We also accept a wider range of international qualifications and tests.
English language qualifications must be no more than three and a half years old from the start date of the programme you are applying to study, unless you are using IELTS, TOEFL, PTE or Trinity ISE, in which case it must be no more than two years old.
(Revised 05/06/2019 to provide more accurate/comprehensive information.)
This information is part of a government initiative to enhance the material that higher education institutions provide about their degree programmes.
It is one of many sources of information which will enable you to make an informed decision on what and where to study.
Please note that some programmes do not have Unistats data available.
You will spend Year 3 at a university in Taiwan or China and in a Russian-speaking country. You will spend a total of 30 weeks abroad and are required to spend a minimum of eight consecutive weeks in each country. This is a compulsory part of your programme.
Costs will vary according to the location. Some scholarship money may be available from external sources, on a competitive basis, for students studying in China.
For more information on how much it will cost to study with us and the financial support available see our fees and funding information.
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