Admission and Aid
REEES ordinarily accepts applications for fall term admission only. Applications for admission must be received by February 1. In a typical year, most applicants are also looking for financial aid. Decisions on both admission and teaching fellowships are normally made by early March. Shortly thereafter, REEES will notify all applicants in writing as to whether they have been accepted into the program, whether they were awarded a teaching fellowship, and if so, at what level of funding.
Acceptance, Wait Lists, Funding
Applicants may occasionally be placed on a waiting list for funding. Applicants who have been offered funding are obliged to accept or reject the offer by April 15, in compliance with the Council of Graduate Schools’ resolution on funding deadlines. In the event that an applicant chooses not to accept an offer of funding, REEES will offer the fellowship to the next candidate on the waiting list.
The Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies’ Graduate Application is primarily an online process. You may upload PDF copies of your statement of purpose and writing sample. Your recommenders may upload PDF copies of your recommendation letters. You are responsible for making sure your test scores are reported through Educational Testing Services, and that your official transcripts are mailed both to the Office of Admissions (degree transcript only) and to Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies (all college/university transcripts). See addresses below.
- GRE Test – Native speakers of English must take the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). We suggest you take the exam no later than between December 21 and January 4, which is 4-6 weeks prior to the application deadline.We must receive your official scores via Educational Testing Services no later than February 1. GRE scores must be reported to the University of Oregon (code 4846) or to Russian (2606). The exam date should not be older than five years. For information about the GRE, visit the website http://www.gre.org.
- TOEFL – International students and applicants whose native language is not English must show proof of language proficiency by passing the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS). The exam date should not be older than five years. For information about the TOEFL, visit their website at http://www.ets.org/toefl/.TOEFL minimum scores – 575 on the paper-based test or 90 on the internet-based test.
IELTS minimum scores – (Academic module) overall band score for graduate admission is 7.0.We suggest you take the exam 4- 6 weeks before the application deadline of February 1. We must receive your official scores no later than February 1.TOEFL/IELTS Waiver – international students who have graduated from an accredited 4-year U.S. university or from one of the following countries: Australia, Canada (excluding Quebec), Ireland, New Zealand, or the United Kingdom are not required to take the TOEFL or IELTS.
- [optional] Graduate Teaching Fellowship (GTF)—Most applicants will wish to apply for a fellowship to support their graduate education. Please complete the standard application form for a Graduate Teaching Fellowship. Please submit this application by mail (5206 University of Oregon Eugene, OR 97403-5206) or email to <email@example.com>The letters of recommendation submitted with your application will be used to evaluate your GTF application. You do not need to submit any additional letters of reference to your application for a fellowship.
- Transcripts – Applicants must hold an undergraduate degree from an accredited 4-year university by the time of admission. Applicants must submit an official transcript of all university-level courses that they have taken. International students must submit the final transcripts in both the original language and an official English translation.An undergraduate transcripts, showing the completed degree must be mailed to:
Office of Admissions
1217 University of Oregon
Eugene OR 97403-12172.
- Late Graduation – If you have not graduated at the time of application, please send transcripts showing latest term completed. If you are accepted for admission, your official degree transcript must be sent as soon as you have graduated.
- The University of Oregon Application to the Graduate School and to the Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies Graduate Program is found at the following link:
https://gradweb.uoregon.edu/online_app/application/guidelines1.aspAn application fee of $50 must accompany this application.Note: If you are an international student and do not have a social security number, leave that line blank.
- Writing sample: Applicants are ordinarily expected to submit a sample of their academic writing, such as a term paper or undergraduate thesis. This writing sample may be in either English or Russian. Again, applicants who have been away from the university for many years may feel that their undergraduate papers do not reflect their current intellectual level. If this is the case, you may submit some writing that you have done in connection with your profession, or, alternatively, petition to waive the writing sample requirement, but write a longer-than-normal statement of purpose to give us a sense of your intellectual orientation and writing skills.
- Statement of Purpose: Every applicant must submit a statement of purpose indicating your area of interest within Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies, career goals, and other relevant information. Ordinarily the statement of purpose should be 1-2 typed pages. It should be written in English.
- Three letters of recommendation: Letters should ideally speak to your academic qualifications and potential, which is to say that university professors who know you well can usually write the most effective recommendations. If, however, you have been out of school for some time, it may make sense to ask for letters from people who have seen your capabilities more recently in a work setting. REEES may consider an application with fewer than three recommendations under these circumstances. Letters may be in English, Russian, French, or German.These letters will be uploaded by your recommender after you’ve completed entering the following information for each: name, position, institution, street address, telephone and email. We will contact each recommender, and ask her/him to upload her/his recommendation.We encourage you to do this step early in your application process, to allow recommenders as much time as possible to upload their letters.If you have paper copies of recommendation letters, you may send these sealed envelopes (with recommender signature across the seal) by mail to the Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies Graduate Program at the address listed above for sending transcripts. You will still list all the information about your recommender in the online form. There is a check-box for “Send by Mail” on the online form.
U.S. Government regulations require that the University of Oregon verify the availability of sufficient financial support for non-immigrant students before a Certificate of Eligibility (Form I-20 or DS-2019) can be issued. International students must submit supporting financial documents (e.g., Graduate Teaching Fellowship (GTF) appointment contract, scholarship award letter) and/or bank statements with their applications. Students planning to be sponsored by an agency, government or other sponsor should have proof of financial support sent from the sponsoring agency (e.g., a letter from the sponsor and copies of the sponsor’s bank statement).
International applicants must provide this information to Admissions using the Supplementary Application Financial Statement for International Students. This information must be provided after receiving a letter of admission, if the applicant accepts admission.
The Graduate School maintains a webpage with additional information for International applicants.
International Affairs is another good resource for International Students.
Questions about the Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies Application process
Contact: Hope Marston
Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies Graduate Coordinator
Phone: 541 346-5052
Questions about the Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies Graduate Program
Contact: Jenifer Presto
Director of Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies
Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies invites applications from foreign citizens. According to general university policy, international students are required to submit a Supplementary Application and Financial Statement for International Students <http://admissions.uoregon.edu/apply/pdf/ifinancial.pdf> along with their application to the university. This form asks students to report their financial resources, and the University often requests supporting documentation. For example, students with fellowships from their home country’s government would submit a copy of the letter awarding the scholarship or loan. Other students might simply submit a bank statement or an affidavit of support (form I-134). University of Oregon is obliged to verify international students’ ability to pay for their educational and living expenses before it can issue a Certificate of Eligibility (I-20), which is required in order for a student to apply for a visa.
International applicants who cannot pay for their expenses from their own resources should not be deterred from applying simply because they have to fill out these forms. Most international applicants, like most American applicants, will choose to apply for a Graduate Teaching Fellowship to support their studies. If that is your intention, you should fill out the forms regarding your personal financial resources, but also indicate the fact that your application is contingent on receipt of a fellowship.
As noted above, international students who are non-native speakers of English are required to take the Test of English as a Foreign Language. The University of Oregon defines “non-native speakers of English” very broadly, with the effect that most international students from countries other than Canada, Great Britain, Ireland, Australia, and New Zealand are required to submit TOEFL scores.
For further information about UO procedures for international applicants, see the International Affairs website, http://international.uoregon.edu/index.php/isss.
US Army Foreign Area Officers
REEES encourages applications from Army FAOs, and is willing to make special accommodations to facilitate their study. First, while ideally FAOs should try to submit their applications during the regular admissions cycle, i.e. by February 1, the fact that FAOs do not need to be considered for financial aid from the University makes REEES willing to consider their applications at other times. Second, we realize that FAOs sometimes have schedules that do not match the academic year, and may, for example, need to enroll in the program in January rather than September. Because FAOs typically have outstanding Russian language skills and can continue their studies during the summer between their first and second years in the program, they should still be able to complete their program by June of the second academic year even if they begin a quarter late. If you are an Army FAO, please indicate this clearly on your application and in your statement of purpose.
Funding in Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies is available in the form of Graduate Teaching Fellowships (GTF), which are awarded on a competitive basis to students who submit a GTF application as part of their application materials. Because fellowships are connected to teaching duties, award decisions may take into account both the applicant’s scholarly promise and the applicant’s suitability for a teaching appointment. The duties and benefits inherent in a GTF are regulated by collective bargaining agreements between the University and the Graduate Teaching Fellows Federation, the union for graduate student teachers. According to these agreements, each GTF carries the following benefits:
Graduate Teaching Fellows (GTFs) with an appointment equal to or greater than .20 FTE will receive a tuition waiver that exempts them from payment of the instruction fee portion of tuition on the first 16 credit hours per term. GTFs are assessed non-instructional fees set by the Oregon University System (OUS), of which each GTF is responsible for paying $61 per quarter during the academic year. These fees are not covered for GTFs during the summer term. The one-time matriculation fee is waived for each graduate student whose first term as a GTF is the term in which he/she matriculates. GTFs are responsible for specific major and school fees that may apply. Tuition and fees are subject to change without additional notice.
GTFs are also eligible to receive health insurance benefits for the individual GTF and at a subsidized rate for family members.
A “Summer Sandwich” tuition waiver is available to students who will not be hired as GTFs during the summer if they meet the criteria below:
- Hold a GTF appointment at least two quarters of the prece during the academic year that precedes the summer in question
Stipend for living expenses. The stipend is calculated in relation to the size of the GTF award, which in turn depends on the student’s teaching duties. Each award is described as a percentage of a full-time position, which would be 1.0 FTE (full-time equivalency). REEES makes awards between 0.20 FTE and 0.49 FTE at rates determined by the collective bargaining agreement.
Teaching duties vary according to the size of the fellowship. Most, though not all, teaching appointments in REEES are connected to the first two years of Russian language courses. Typical teaching assignments include:
0.49 FTE: Teaching an entire section of first- or second-year Russian, under the general supervision of Russian language coordinator Yelaina Kripkov.
0.40 FTE: Teaching small sections attached to first- or second-year Russian for oral skills; or teaching 1-2 days a week of a first-year class taught by Dr. Kripkov; or assisting and grading for courses in Russian history, literature, or culture; or running an evening series and mini-course on Russian film.
Application procedure for a Graduate Teaching Fellowship: Submit the on-line application for a GTF with your other application materials (as described above). In addition, since teaching appointments ordinarily involve Russian language teaching, applicants for a fellowship will be contacted by Russian language coordinator Yelaina Kripkov for a telephone interview in Russian.
Q: I am interested in Russian studies, but I have not had very much Russian. Is it worth applying anyway?
A: Maybe. The requirement for the Master’s degree is four years of Russian or equivalent fluency, plus satisfactory performance on a translation exam in your field of concentration. In theory, you could enroll with as little as one year of prior Russian language study by taking second-year Russian during the first year, third year over the summer (at one of many available summer language programs at other universities), and take fourth-year during your second year in the program. In practice, though, this would probably not enable you to finish your M.A. in two years. The stumbling blocks would be the translation exam, which requires a degree of reading fluency not usually attained until after completion of the fourth year course, and, more importantly, the M.A. thesis, since a thesis in Russian studies necessarily involves work with Russian-language texts. We thus recommend at least three years of Russian before entering the program, though we will consider applications with less than that. Applicants should also bear in mind that students with fewer than three years of Russian will not ordinarily be considered for a fellowship, since most GTF assignments involve language teaching. If you are interested in enrolling in the program and have only had two years of Russian, we strongly encourage you to take an intensive summer course before your arrival here. If you indicate your plan to do so in your application essay, we may consider you for GTF funding (contingent on submission of proof that you have actually enrolled in a summer program).
Q: I am Russian, and am interested in applying to your program mainly as an opportunity to spend two years in the United States. Do you have any advice for my statement of purpose?
A: It is only natural that one reason for applying is to experience life in the United States, and fluency in Russian may make you a strong candidate for a teaching fellowship. The main thing to keep in mind when you write your application essay is that this is a graduate program and not simply a cultural exchange. Try to demonstrate your intellectual interests and sophistication, since we cannot accept you for the program unless you seem like a viable candidate for graduate study. Your writing sample, which may be in Russian, can help here, too. One approach to the statement of purpose that has worked for applicants from Russia in the past is to identify your probable field of concentration within Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies and discuss the methodological and/or practical benefits of exploring that field as it is practiced in the United States.
For information about the program, write to REEES Director Jenifer Presto (firstname.lastname@example.org).