A massive country like Russia can be pretty intimidating to many international students. The country has countless globally acknowledged universities. However, there is a minimum percentage of international students studying in these universities, mainly because of the language barrier. However in recent years, universities have continued to promote internationalization by creating curriculums specifically for international students. Most universities now offer English-taught academic programs at all levels, making it easier for students abroad to complete and acquire a degree in the country.

Since Russia is such a big country and universities and higher education institutions are immeasurable, we have compiled at least a few best universities that offer programs completely instructed in English!

Top Universities for English-taught Programs in Russia

1. Tomsk State University

Tomsk State University (TSU) is an excellent English-taught university for international students who plan to study in Russia. It is a well-respected school both recognized in the domestic and global community. The educational system is exceptional at all levels. It provides advanced training, comprehensive programs, and innovative learning approaches to generate a pool of talented and outstanding graduates capable of working in top-notch companies locally and internationally.

The university currently has several study programs fully conducted in English. There are two bachelor’s programs offered at the undergraduate level: BSc. Tomsk International Science Program (TISP) and Software Engineering. These programs are usually completed in four years with 240 ECTS. Moreover, English-taught master’s programs are offered in the following areas of expertise: Arts and Humanities (offering a professionally oriented translation program), Science and Engineering (Big Data and Data Science, Comp Engineering: AI and Robotics, Mathematical analysis and modeling programs), Life Sciences (Biodiversity, Human development: genetics, neuroscience and psychology programs), Social Sciences (Intl Journalism in the World of New Media, Intl Management, and Migration Studies programs), and Natural Sciences (Biophotonics programs). Obtaining a master’s degree will require students to complete 120 ECTS in two years. And lastly, there are around nine Ph.D. programs that are also currently open for researchers and professionals.

2. Higher School of Economics University (HSE University)

HSE University is a globally recognized university that offers a variety of English-taught programs at undergraduate and postgraduate levels in Russia. Due to its gaining presence in the global community, this national research university has seen increasing numbers of international students enrolled in their university yearly. One of the institution’s goals is to attract more students across the globe; it has been offering unique study programs entirely instructed in English by experts and renowned professors.

The university offers undergraduate programs and a wide range of master’s and doctoral programs. There are nine study programs offered at the undergraduate level: three study programs taught in the HSE St. Petersburg campus are Political Science and World Politics, Sociology and Social Informatics, and International Bachelor in Business and Economics. The institution has partnered with several renowned universities abroad to offer double degree bachelor’s programs. HSE and its affiliate, the University of London, offer dual degree programs in Economics, Management & Digital Innovation, International Relations, and Data Science & Business Analytics. The university and ESCP Business School (France) offer a double degree program in International Business. Another double-degree program in Economics and Politics in Asia is being offered by HSE and its affiliate, Kyung Hee University (South Korea). Students who would like to pursue their master’s programs at the university can check this complete list. The university offers a wide range of study programs conducted in English. Additionally, top-quality research programs in various areas of study are also provided at the Ph.D. level. It has partnered with a web-based educational platform, Coursera, to offer five MOOCs entirely taught online.

3. Peter the Great St. Petersburg Polytechnic University

St. Petersburg Polytechnic University values multiculturalism. By doing so, the university has extended its curriculum and created English-taught programs to attract students in Russia and abroad. It has been perceived to be accommodating international students into their campuses to develop a sense of community and build harmonious relationships between local and international students.

Students pursuing a bachelor’s degree in the university will allow them to spend a semester abroad at an affiliate university. Such programs offered are the International Business program with its partner university, Seinajoki University of Applied Sciences in Finland, and the International Trade program affiliated with the University of Applied Sciences of Stralsund in Germany. The master’s degree programs, on the other hand, have numerous programs from various areas of expertise like Engineering, Natural Sciences, Economics and Management, and Humanities. Some of these are double-degree or triple-degree programs. As for Ph.D. aspirants, the university has several joint Ph.D. programs with collaborations with some renowned universities globally. Students will be required to spend time with the partner university. Although the study programs are taught in English, one of the basic requirements to be admitted is to acquire a high level of language proficiency in Russian and the language where the partner university is located.

4. People’s Friendship University of Russia (RUDN University)

RUDN University is a leading English-taught university in Russia that gives great importance to internationalism. It admits many international students regardless of stature, country, or culture. This is in pursuance of the university’s mission to unite people of different backgrounds and equip students with core competencies and abilities to produce professionals that help improve issues and various aspects of global crisis.

International students who seek to pursue a career in dentistry, general medicine, and veterinary medicine may take up these specialist degrees offered at the university. These study programs are offered full-time and are typically completed in 5-6 years. The university provides numerous study master’s degree programs in English. These programs can be completed full-time in two years or part-time in two and a half years. Postgraduate courses or doctoral programs are also offered for exceptional professionals. These programs, however, are only offered full-time with a completion of 3 to 4 years.

5. Ural Federal University (UrFU)

Ural Federal University (UrFU) is one of Russia’s leading universities in Ekaterinburg. The university offers English-taught programs designed for international students. Students interested in Economics and Public Affairs can check the university’s two English-taught bachelor’s degree programs. These programs are International Economics & Business and Public Policy Administration programs. While at the master’s degree level, there are 15 programs offered in several areas of study. Moreover, international students studying bachelor’s or master’s programs at the university may apply for Russian scholarships funded by the government. Lastly, doctoral programs offered are in the areas of study in Natural Science and Mathematics, Engineering and Technical Science, Social Sciences, Humanities, and Arts and Culture.


We hope that this article on English-taught Universities in Russia was helpful. Make sure to also check out the Available Programs in Europe!

About the Author: Hyun Lee

Hi! I am Hyun, and I am the founder at Global Scholarships. I've received a full-tuition scholarship at Birmingham-Southern College and a $1,000 Burger King Scholarship for my undergraduate degree and was offered a fully funded scholarship consisting of tuition, living stipend, and health insurance for computer science Ph.D. program at North Carolina State University. You can read more about my scholarship journey here. If you are interested, you can follow me on Linkedin where I regularly write about scholarship opportunities.

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