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Each course in the curriculum is measured in credits. One credit is equivalent to 38 academic hours (1 academic hour is 40 minutes). Thus, one credit is a little more than 25 astronomical hours. A Bachelor’s degree is awarded to students who received 240 credits, and Master's degree is awarded to students with 120 credits or more. The Russian Federation uses the most common credit system in Europe—ECTS (the European Credit Transfer System). Our credits are comparable in duration and scope with European universities.

Degree Programme Structure

The bachelor's degree programme is divided into seven modules or blocks:


Your major consists of compulsory subjects and elective subjects, from which you will form your individual curriculum. Project seminars and research seminars are also among the electives. These seminars will allow you to discuss the results of your academic work and correctly present them in research papers.


Internship is a mandatory part of your educational programme, which allows you to build competencies required to solve practical problems in the professional field you’ve chosen. There are three types of internships at HSE University: professional, project, and research. During your training, you will be able to participate in various projects, write a research paper on a theoretic or applied problem, or complete a professional internship at HSE or another organization.

General Courses

All educational programmes have general courses. These are History, Economics, Psychology, Philosophy, Sociology, Law, and Rhetoric—you will have to get a passing grade in at least three of them. These three courses will be listed on your curriculum.


Minor will allow you to get additional competencies outside your major. You can choose several additional courses that are either related or unrelated to each other (in the latter case, the minor will be called ‘a free minor’).

English Language

All HSE graduates must be able to communicate professionally in English. If you need to improve your English, you can take an optional course. The list of subjects to study will depend on the results of a language proficiency test. In the second and third years, students are expected to take exams in English, and in the final year they will have to submit a plan for their thesis (Project Proposal) in English.

Data Culture

Starting from your first year, you will take courses that will help you learn the basic principles of statistics, improve your Excel skills, learn a programming language, such as Python, and try your hand at working with data. HSE will test all its undergraduates for digital literacy with a special test, so get ready!

Final State Certification

At the end of your training, you will have to present your thesis to the state certification commission. But there may not be a final state certification exam. Whether there is a final exam or not is indicated in the documents of your educational programme. According to the results of the final state certification exam, you will be awarded a bachelor's degree and a state-approved diploma. By the way, HSE also has its custom diploma, which is issued to all graduates.

Online Education

While studying at HSE, you will have courses that are taught online. Lectures can be delivered via online services, homework can be submitted to a teacher or assistant via LMS, and exams can be proctored. Proctor monitors you working on a task and prevents cheating. Don't worry, this system has been used in HSE for a long time.

By the way, thanks to remote technologies, you will be able to take inter-campus courses. These courses are taught to HSE students of all four campuses at the same time. 

Moreover, HSE offers courses on Coursera and the National Open Education Platform. Each degree programme’s website includes a list of online courses recommended to its students. You can take any of these courses.

You can also choose options that are not on the list and present a certificate upon its completion (please, remember that it’s up to the programme’s administration as to whether it will be included in your curriculum).

You can see HSE eLearning Projects and find out more about HSE’s online presence.

Optional Open Courses

Courses in various fields of study can be attended by all students regardless of faculty, year of studies, or educational programme. Their important feature is that they can be studied not only by HSE students, but also by anyone interested from other Moscow universities or elsewhere.

The list of optional open courses in the 2020/21 academic year includes over 50 original courses that represent a wide range of recent studies in economics and management, technology and natural sciences, humanities and social sciences. Most courses are taught in Russian, but there also is a number of courses taught in English.

Academic Mobility 

While being an HSE student, you can also study a few courses at other universities and have the results recognized by HSE as a part of your curriculum. This can be done under academic mobility opportunities.  

In most cases a student studies at another university for one or two semesters. You should apply for an individual curriculum at your study office if you would like to take part in the University’s academic mobility programmes.

Credits for some courses of summer or winter schools held by other universities can be also transferred to HSE. Your study office will provide more details on transferring your mobility results.

Types of academic mobility (depending on location)

Contact your study office if you are interested in the following types of academic mobility:

1. Academic mobility within the university means a student spends one semester at HSE campuses in Saint Petersburg, Nizhniy Novgorod, or Perm.  

2. Academic mobility in Russia implies that you study courses offered by another Russian university.

3. Remote academic mobility refers to taking online courses offered by other universities (for example, on Coursera).

For more information on these types of mobility, visit the webpage.

You can also spend a semester at one of HSE partner universities outside Russia. There are over 250 international partners that welcome our students to their exchange programmes in Europe, Asia, North and South Americas.  

International academic mobility is a unique chance to gain hands-on experience, expand your professional network, and improve intercultural and teamwork skills. Moreover, studying abroad opens up new employment possibilities around the world.  

To find out more about your academic mobility opportunities check the webpage.

Russian as a Foreign Language

All international students can attend classes of Russian as a foreign language at all levels during their studies at HSE, with one semester free of charge. Before the classes, you will take an assessment test and will be placed in a group according to your language proficiency level.

The course offers different levels of Russian:

  • Elementary (A1/A2)
  • Pre-intermediate (B1)
  • Intermediate (B2)
  • Upper-intermediate (C1)
  • Advanced (C2)

Studying in small groups, you will develop your reading, writing, and speaking skills.

A standard course takes one semester (two modules) with 8–10 academic hours per week (6 ECTS credits in total).

You can opt to complete only one module and earn 3 ECTS credits. Other options are also available on a paid basis.



If you study at a Russian state higher education establishment (through quotas for international students), you will receive state academic scholarship. It is given to all first-year students until the end of Module 1. Then, your grades are reviewed. In order to keep receiving the scholarship you must have grades of 6-10.

State academic scholarship amounts to 1 759 RUB/month.

Moreover, you can receive an increased state academic scholarship, if you have demonstrated outstanding achievements in studies and research, and you also have the opportunity to apply for the Vladimir Potanin Fund Scholarship Program. Here you can find detailed information.

For more information visit the webpage.