I would like to spend an academic year studying Russian in Russia.
I am currently a student with the OU
in the UK, an institute I chose to study with because 1. I didn't feel ready to leave home and 2. I am not the most sociable person in the world and I knew I wouldn't feel comfortable doing the usual student-y things. I am very happy with the OU and can't really say enough good things about it, but I would like to do the "student thing" for awhile, preferably abroad.
Russia has always intrigued me and I would love to spend some time living and studying in St. Petersburg. Obviously there are a lot of language schools for people wanting to learn the language quickly while living locally, but many of them look very touristy and I'd like to stay longer than the 2-12 weeks offered by most of the schools. The school I've been looking at is the Centre of Russian Language & Culture
, but I'm pretty open to all suggestions. I would be wanting to go for the academic year 2007-08 and I am currently trying to find a local Russian speaker to take lessons with. I hope I would have a reasonable grasp of the language before I went.
Any suggestions/stories/cautions from anyone who's studied in Russia (or studied away from their native country even) would be great. I'm quite realistic about what to expect from the experience (i.e. I don't think I'm going to be speaking Russian like a native after 10 months) and I'm not too concerned with there being any "official" qualifications at the end of the course - really, I just want to spend a year away from home learning and having fun.