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The Overseas Russian Flagship Program, administered by American Councils for International Education: ACTR/ACCELS at Saint Petersburg State University in Saint Petersburg, Russia, is a rigorous academic yearlong program for highly motivated students of all majors who have achieved an Advanced Low (ILR 2) level of proficiency in Russian to reach a Superior (ILR 3) level of proficiency. The program provides intensive, professional language training and development through coursework in Russian as a foreign language that targets the Superior level of proficiency, courses in the student's major field of study, individual and small-group tutoring, a professional internship, and a homestay with a Russian family.
UW-Madison undergraduates who are interested in applying to the Overseas Russian Flagship program must be admitted students to the UW-Madison (domestic) Russian Flagship program.
The program is located in Saint Petersburg, the 2nd largest city in Russia. Language instruction takes place at the newly renovated Special Department of Philology at Saint Petersburg State University, located in the city center on the Neva embankment close to the University's main campus on Vasilievsky Island. Established by Peter the Great in 1724, the University has since remained one of the world's foremost centers of learning. Currently 25,000 undergraduate and graduate students study in the University's 24 departments, of which several, including the Special Department of Philology, are internationally renowned.
Getting to Your Program
ACTR holds a mandatory pre-departure orientation in Washington , D.C. -- which is also where the mandatory group flight departs.
A student visa is required. U.S. citizens must have a U.S. passport valid for at least six months beyond the end of the program. ACTR will provide you with visa information.
OrientationIAP expects you to be an active participant in preparing yourself for your study abroad experience. As a participant on an IAP program, you will receive a pre-departure orientation, either in-person or online. The type and format of this orientation will vary by program and will be provided to you upon acceptance to the program.
There is a mandatory pre-departure orientation in Washington, D.C. (Students depart as a group directly from the orientation in D.C.) An orientation session is also held upon arrival in Saint Petersburg, to acquaint students with the program.
HousingStudents live with Russian host families for the duration of the program. Host families provide private rooms and telephone access for their American guests, as well as two meals per day during the week, and three meals per day on the weekends.
Excursions and Activities
Russian-language excursions in and around Saint Petersburg are organized for Flagship participants, in coordination with the academic program at the university. As learning activities that extend and enhance work done in the classroom, excursions contribute to steady language progress and provide students with uniquely rewarding opportunities to learn more about Russian history and culture. In addition to academically oriented excursions, other special events of a more informal nature provide students with opportunities to learn more about Russia and Saint Petersburg, and to meet native Russian speakers.
You will be enrolled in the UW System required health insurance through Cultural Insurance Services International (CISI) and the cost of the insurance coverage is included in program fees.
U.S. resident director and local staff
Returned Student Network
to contact a returned student.
How to Apply
First complete the IAP Online Application. UW Affiliate programs may require you to apply directly to the affiliate either simultaneously during the IAP application process OR after you have received a preliminary admissions decision from IAP. After you have completed the IAP Online Application, the following forms will become available to you through the application portal. Be sure to read the instructions carefully for information on when to apply to the affiliate.
Russian Flagship Online Application
Unofficial Transcript (Student Record)
Unofficial Transcript - OPTIONAL - Additional File
Forms are subject to change. Complete the forms according to the checklist provided to you in the online application portal.
After the Deadline
IAP will review your application and make a preliminary admissions decision. You will be notified of the admissions decision via email. The affiliate university or organization will make the final admissions decision.
The program is hosted by the Special Department of Philology of Saint Petersburg State University, affording Flagship students access to courses and academic resources of one of the world's best-known centers for the study of Russian language and culture and one of Russia's most respected universities. The program in Russia is administered by American Councils for International Education under the terms of a cooperative agreement with Saint Petersburg State University. The Flagship curriculum was carefully designed by American and Russian specialists in Russian language teaching to provide individualized and intensive language training for students. In addition to Flagship courses, students directly enroll in one course each semester in their area of interest at Saint Petersburg State University. The course, which students take with Russian students, is conducted entirely in Russian.
Students may receive UW-Madison credit for all courses taken abroad on this program.
Program Web Page(s)
Use the links below to see a list of courses that students have taken on this program before and the UW equivalents. Note: this list only includes pre-approved courses for your program and may not be an exhaustive list of courses or departments. You will get instructions on the course equivalent process after acceptance.
Sort by Foreign Course Titles
Sort by UW-Madison Course Titles
Group by host institution and Sort by Foreign Course Titles
Group by host institution and Sort by UW-Madison Course Titles