Russian Language & Literature

Русский язык и русская литература в Рид–колледже

Russian for Heritage Speakers

The Russian Department offers a special independent study course for heritage speakers* of Russian. This course provides language instructions and individualized tutoring to address the specific needs of students at all levels of language competence, including reading and writing in Russian with particular emphasis on orthography, punctuation, syntax, and stylistics devices. Work on communication in formal academic situations is included.

The course, taught entirely in Russian, meets three hours per week, in one or two sessions for 0.5 credit per semester. A Russian language placement exam or an interview with the instructor are required of students wishing to register for Russian for Heritage Speakers. Russian heritage speakers are eligible to participate in the Russian heritage speakers programs abroad (Bard-Smolny Colleges, St. Petersburg; Russian Overseas Flagship Program (ACTR).

*A heritage speaker is a student who is exposed to a language other than English at home. Heritage speakers can be categorized based on the prominence and development of the heritage language in the student's daily life. Some students have full oral fluency and literacy in the home language; others may have full oral fluency but their written literacy was not developed because they were schooled in English. Another group of students—typically third- or fourth-generation—can speak to a limited degree but cannot express themselves on a wide range of topics. Students from any of these categories may also have gaps in knowledge about their cultural heritage.