20 international students have trained at the first TSU Winter School

12 February 2016

The Faculty of Philology has completed the first Winter School of Intensive Russian for International Students. Students from Japan, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Italy, India, Mongolia, and China were the participants of the school.

Tomsk State University has a successful tradition of holding the Summer School of the Russian Language for International Students. But after arriving in the Siberian city, many of them dream about seeing the snow and the real Russian winter. Now guests of TSU had this opportunity.

- For many students from tropical countries the school became extreme. However, they were ready for it, plus seeing more specifics. Their first acquaintance went well, - says Anna Dolganina, teacher of speech practice. - The students came with a certain level of training, most of them have improved in the study of Russian and are not learning it from scratch. Therefore, our task is to educate them in a way that is as interesting, intense, and active as possible. 

Lessons are usually divided into two parts: grammatical skills and speaking practice. Students are offered texts about Tomsk and Siberia, so that they get to know the local flavor, history, and current status. The intensive language environment (everyone present speaks Russian) creates good progress in speech. Through daily practice and keeping a diary, students improve their written language too.

Students arrive for the two-week TSU language schools after a competitive selection. The application consists of a questionnaire and motivation letter. The School of Intensive Russian is very popular with international students, so there are many comers.

- I've always had a dream to come to Russia, and it became possible to me year and a half ago. I studied here for one semester and I really enjoyed it. I decided to come again, - says Daniel from the Czech Republic. - There are very good people who want to communicate with international students. I already have many Russian friends. 

The language school is always combined with an active cultural programme. Participants not only gain new skills, but also are immersed in the Russian and Siberian culture and the characteristics of our country, and get acquainted with TSU and the opportunities it offers. International students also will remember traditional winter fun - skating with slides, a visit to the ice cities, walking in the winter forest, skiing, skating, and a Russian banya. 

- We show TSU and the city in all its glory. People come here and fall in love with the University and culture. As a rule, many who come here to school return to continue training in basic educational programmes - adds Lidia Dmitrieva, curator of the Winter School and head of TSU International Student Services Centre.

The School of Intensive Russian held at TSU annually. Nine summer schools were held in 2015, and 12 winter and summer schools are planned for 2016. This summer, the guests of the University will have even more opportunities - it is planned to combine the training with a guided tour to Baikal or the Altai Mountains, where students can learn the Russian language in nature.