Russian Federation | International Credentials Equivalencies

Minimum GPA
4/5 or Good Standing
B Plus GPA
Instruction Languages
Bachelors Equiv.
Bakalavr (requiring 4 years of study);Specialist Diploma
Masters Equiv.
Magistr;Specialist Diploma (requiring 5 years of study)
Grad Sample
Candidate of Science (Kandidat Nauk)
First Degree Sample
Diploma of Specialist
Grading System

5 Excellent (Otlichno)
4 Good (Khorosho)
3 Satisfactory/Pass (Udovletvoritel`no)
2 Unsatisfactory (Neudovletvoritel`no)

Passed/ Credited (Zacet): used for a course in which an examination was not taken, but all course requirements were completed.

Recognized Universities

Literature Institute named after A. M. Gorky
Moscow Higher School of Economics
Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology
Moscow Medical Academy named after I. M. Sechenov
Moscow Pedagogical State University
Moscow State Institute of International Relations
Moscow State Technical University named after N. E. Bauman
Moscow State University
Moscow State University named after M.V. Lomonosov
Novosibirsk State University
Rostov State University
Russian Peoples` Friendship University
St. Petersburg State Technical University
St. Petersburg State University

There are over six hundred public and over two hundred accredited non-State institutions of higher education in the Russian Federation. If you are not familiar with an institution, contact your Student Services Officer.

Notes for Russian Federation

Source AACRAO-Edge (November 12, 2013)
The Russian Federation has developed new “Federal State Educational Standards” (FSES) that define higher education programs at the bachelor, master and specialist level in terms of “workload credit units”, replacing the traditional system of expressing student workload in terms of hours. The introduction of “credit units” – зачетний единиц / zachetnaja edinitsa in Russian – is a result of Russia’s participation in the Bologna process, which requires the use of credits that are compatible with the European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System (ECTS) as one tool in increasing student mobility in Europe.

The FSES are the outlines of curricular structure and content mandated for use at all levels of education throughout the Russian Federation. The development of a credit system in Russian higher education was first approved in 2002. The Peoples’ Friendship University of Russia began using a credit system in 2005. By 2007, over 100 higher education institutions and branches of institutions were using the credit system. The 2009 Bologna process National Report of the Russian Federation states that 50-75% of programs at Russian higher education institutions were using ECTS credits at that time.

The new credit unit is defined as representing 36 academic hours per credit. The academic hour in Russia is 45 minutes. A full-time year consists of 60 credits, making the Russian system compatible with the ECTS credit system. The four-year bachelor requires 240 credits. The five-year specialist requires 300 credits, while the six-year specialist program in medicine requires 360 credits. The two-year master, which follows the bachelor, requires 120 credits. The credit system is not used for the research-based degrees, the Candidate of Sciences and Doctor of Sciences.

Students who began studies under previous iterations of the FSES will continue under the requirements of those programs and will receive a diploma and diploma addendum (transcript) in the state standard format of 2012. Students who begin studies under the new FSES using the credit system will receive a newly-formatted diploma supplement that will show credits.

The rollout of the new FSES and the corresponding completion documentation is planned as follows:

Bachelor (бакалавр): The FSES for bachelor studies were introduced in 2009-10. The first batch of diplomas with the new diploma supplement showing credits will be issued in 2014.

Specialist (диплом [higher education diploma] with квалификация [professional qualification]): The specialist FSES took effect in 2010-2011. The first batch of diplomas with the new diploma supplement will be issued in 2015.

Master (магистер): The FSES were introduced in 2009-2010, and some institutions have already begun awarding diplomas with the new diploma supplement format.
Pre-university education requires 11 years of study. The Certificate of Secondary Complete General Education is required for admission to university level institutions. Some universities require competitive entrance examinations.

There are articulation agreements between colleges and universities which permit transfer credit for up to two years of college-level education toward university degrees.

Bologna note:

Russia joined Bologna process in 2003. Since the mid-90s, many universities have introduced educational programs allowing students to graduate with a Bachelor’s degree (4 years) and then earn a Master`s degree (another 1–2 years) while preserving the old 5–6 year scheme. In October 2007 Russia enacted a move to two-tier education in line with Bologna Process model:

1) Bachelor’s (undergraduate) (4 years)
2) Master’s (graduate) degrees (1-2 years).

Diploma Supplements are not yet issued by institutions.

Old Specialist degree is now being discontinued.

Last modified: October 18, 2019