Fall 2003


Instructor: Irina McClellan                                             Class Meets: M.W.F. 10:00-10:50pm

Office: 148 West Hall                                                   BC  1025

Phone: (229) 333-5948 or                                            Office Hours: M.W. 8:00 -9:00am, 

            (229) 333-7357                                               11:00-12:00pm, 3:15-3.45 pm.

E-mail:                          Fr.8:00-9:00am, 11:00-12:00pm                                or by appointment

Fax: (229) 333-5948


Required Texts


Robin, Richard, K. Evans-Romaine, G. Shatalina. Golosa, A Basic Course in Russian, Book I, 3d ed., Prentice Hall, 2003

Robin, Richard, K. Evans-Romaine, G. Shatalina, Golosa: Lab Manual/Workbook, 3d

ed, Prentice Hall, 2003.


Classroom materials (suggested but not required)

Supply of 3 x 5 index cards, 3-ring notebook, and a yellow highlighter.


Course Objective/Description.


This is an elementary Russian course for beginners of Russian. The purpose of this course is to develop elementary skills in Russian with emphasis on reading, writing, speaking, and listening comprehension, as well as introduce students to Russian culture and gain some cultural knowledge of Russia and Russian people. The course aims at helping the student to acquire a working knowledge of Russian so that he/she could communicate with Russians on topics covered by the situations dealt with in the course; express his/her thoughts in Russian on the basis of the grammar and vocabulary studied; read with a dictionary, understand and retell simple texts.


 Each lesson in the textbook is organized around a central theme, e.g. Speaking about Oneself, Family, etc. Dialogues for memorization and for listening, grammar and vocabulary explanations, listening, reading, and role-playing exercises are all contained in the main textbook; further oral and written exercises for home work are contained in the Lab Manual/Workbook. Students will work on role-playing situations with partners in and outside of class. Students will be required to use the GOLOSA website on a regular basis, where full audio-program for the textbook and Lab/Manual Workbook, as well as authentic readings and expanded on-line written homework exercises can be found.

Videos and movies will be shown in and outside of class to enhance the cultural aspect of the course. 




Course Outcomes


At the end of the course students will be able to express themselves in Russian with certain facility and carry out the following tasks in each communication area:

1) Listening- understand simple face-to-face conversations by native speakers about home, family, school and biographical information; 2) Speaking-students will be able to meet people and make introductions in Russian, use formal and informal speech etiquette, ask simple questions and make simple statements; maintain a simple dialogue consisting of questions and answers with a native speaker about home, family, school, work, etc.; 3) Reading- read texts and dialogues provided in the text-book, as well as short authentic texts and notes; 4).Writing- write short notes in Russian, simple compositions providing biographical information, as well as about one’s family, home, school.      


In addition, students will grasp the essentials of culture necessary for active and receptive skills: background information on the topics covered in each chapter. They will gain some knowledge of Russian culture and the Russian way of life. Students will learn some facts from the political and historical background of Russia, as well as become familiar with some of Russia's cultural heritage.


Russian differs much more from English than French, German, Italian, or Spanish do, and an American student's progress in learning Russian will thus tend to be somewhat slower than the progress of one studying those other languages. American students taking Russian, therefore, should not be overly concerned if friends in other language classes become more capable of certain types of language activity earlier than they do.


Take advantage of free tutors. Tutors are available and are quite beneficial for difficulties with speaking, listening and/or homework. See 128 West Hall for schedule.


Composition of Grades









30% (15% each)




Student Evaluation


Grades are based on active and consistent participation, regular and on time completion of assignments, evaluations during quizzes and tests.


Course Requirements


Attendance Policy. Students are expected to attend all class meetings and stay for their duration. Each unexcused absence after three will reflect in 1 point off your final grade. Exceptions are made only for medical reasons or personal emergencies. Absence from 10 classes or more may result in an F. The student is responsible for all materials covered in his/her absence. Any work missed must be made up the day the student returns to class.


Participation. Participation is important. This is the grade you earn by coming to class regularly and willing to participate. Class participation will be graded on a daily basis according to the following formula:

5 points Present and Completely Prepared

4 points Present and Partially Prepared

3 points Present but Completely Unprepared

0 points Absent

Completely Prepared does not mean that the student can answer every question correctly: it merely means that the student is prepared to attempt to answer every question based on the previous evening's homework assignment.

Partially Prepared means that the student has demonstrated that she/he has not completed the given day's assignment completely, although some of the assignment was completed.


Daily homework will be assigned and you are expected to complete it and to come to class prepared. If you fail to turn in assigned homework you will receive a 0.

·       Neat work with 5 or fewer errors is an A

·       Fewer than 10 errors is a B

·       More than 11 is a C

·       A homework that fails to indicate sufficient effort will be given an F and may be rewritten


Quizzes. Short quizzes will be given over each section in the chapter


Exams. There will be two exams during the semester. The first exam will take place on Wednesday, October 1, and the Final exam will take place during Finals week as scheduled. Each exam will consist of written and oral parts. Exams will be based on materials covered in class.


Presentations.  Each student should research a topic dealing with some aspect of Russian culture (art, history, historic event, sports, music, people, personality, place, education, etc) and present it to class in English. Students are encouraged to use visual aids, videos, music, technology (Power Point), etc. to deliver the presentation. Written report ( in English) should be submitted with the presentation.

The presentations will be graded on a 100 point scale as follows:

Thorough/Excellent understanding of the topic and good effort, with visual displays for other students to see is 100 points.

Good understanding of the topic and good effort 90 points

Fair understanding of the topic and fair effort 80 points

Poor understanding of the topic and poor effort 50 points


Academic Rules and Procedures


Course Withdrawals. A student may withdraw from the course following the scheduled drop-add period by completing the appropriate forms and acquiring the appropriate signatures. A student will not be allowed to withdraw from the course after mid-term, which occurs on Friday, October 10.


Make-up exams will be permitted for medical reasons or personal emergencies only.


Disability. Valdosta State University complies fully with the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). If you believe that you are covered under this act, and if you have need for special arrangements to allow you to meet the requirements of this course, please contact the Office of Special Services in Nevins Hall. Also, please discuss this with the instructor at the time of the first class. The Department is happy to do whatever it can to ensure each student a full and rewarding participation in class.


This syllabus is subject to revision due to unforeseen circumstances or needs required by the class or professor.