The master of arts degree program in Russian, East European and Central Asian studies provides interdisciplinary area studies training for emerging professionals and future leaders in business, development, government, journalism, law, publishing, and the military. The curriculum is designed to promote a broad understanding of the cultural, political, economic, social, and historical factors that have shaped the development of societies in Eurasia, Russia, and Central and Eastern Europe; mastery in Russian, East European, or Central Asian languages at a level necessary for doing advanced research on and professional work in the region; and knowledge of methodological and analytical approaches of different disciplines that will contribute to a better understanding of the region and will prepare students for conducting advanced research. The program requires both area studies and language training.

The M.A. program is designed to be completed in three semesters, but motivated students who enter with prior language study and commit to intensive summer coursework have the option of completing the course of study within 12 calendar months. Students will work closely with the M.A. advisor, who serves as their primary graduate studies advisor, to ensure that their course of study is both coherent and sufficiently interdisciplinary.

Each year a faculty committee selects a limited number of deserving graduate students (in any field of study) for Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) Fellowships. Applicants must be citizens or permanent residents of the United States and must demonstrate their commitment to the study of a language of Russia, Eastern Europe, or Central Asia, and to related area studies topics. Applications and supporting materials for the FLAS fellowship competition must be submitted by approximately February 15 each year. For more information and an application, see Foreign Language & Area Studies (FLAS) Fellowships.

Students interested in studying Polish may be eligible to apply for a Michael and Emily Lapinski fellowship, administered through the Department of Slavic Languages and Literature. The annual deadline is March 1. Please contact the Slavic department for more information.

CREECA also nominates eligible incoming graduate students in its M.A. program for the Advanced Opportunity Fellowship (for targeted students). To be considered for university funding, all application materials must be received by the early January deadline indicated on the CREECA M.A. application form.

A limited number of teaching assistantships and project assistantships may be available in CREECA and in specific departments that offer high-enrollment courses on REECAS. Information about these assistantships can be obtained by writing or calling CREECA and the respective departments. In addition to these opportunities, other fellowships and financial assistance are available outside CREECA. For further information, incoming graduate students should write directly to the appropriate department or organization.

Minimum Degree Requirements and Satisfactory Progress

To make progress toward a graduate degree, students must meet the Graduate School Minimum Degree Requirements and Satisfactory Progress in addition to the requirements of the program.

Master’s Degrees

M.A.

Minimum Graduate Degree Credit Requirement

30 credits

Minimum Graduate Residence Credit Requirement

16 credits

Minimum Graduate Coursework (50%) Requirement

At least 50% of credits applied toward the graduate degree credit requirement must be in graduate-level coursework; courses with the Graduate Level Coursework attribute are identified and searchable in the university's Course Guide.

Prior Coursework Requirements: Graduate Work from Other Institutions

With program approval, students are allowed to count no more than 9 credits of graduate coursework from other institutions. Coursework earned five or more years prior to admission to a master’s degree is not allowed to satisfy requirements.

Prior Coursework Requirements: UW–Madison Undergraduate

With program approval, students are allowed to count no more than 7 credits of coursework numbered 300 or above taken as a UW–Madison undergraduate student. Coursework earned five or more years prior to admission to a Master’s degree is not allowed to satisfy requirements.

Prior Coursework Requirements: UW–Madison University Special

With program approval, students are allowed to count no more than 9 credits of coursework numbered 300 or above taken as a UW–Madison University Special student. Coursework earned five or more years prior to admission to a master’s degree is not allowed to satisfy requirements.

Credits per Term Allowed

15 credits

Program-Specific Courses Required

Contact the program for information on any additional required courses.

Overall Graduate GPA Requirement

3.00

Other Grade Requirements

The Graduate School requires an average grade of B or better in all coursework (300 or above, not including research credits) taken as a graduate student unless conditions for probationary status require higher grades. Grades of Incomplete are considered to be unsatisfactory if they are not removed during the next enrolled semester.

Probation Policy

The Graduate School regularly reviews the record of any student who earned grades of BC, C, D, F, or Incomplete in a graduate course (300 or above), or grade of U in research credits. This review could result in academic probation with a hold on future enrollment or in being suspended from the Graduate School.

Advisor / Committee

Every graduate student is required to have an advisor. To ensure that students are making satisfactory progress toward a degree, the Graduate School expects them to meet with their advisor on a regular basis.

An advisor generally serves as the thesis advisor. In many cases, an advisor is assigned to incoming students. Students can be suspended from the Graduate School if they do not have an advisor. An advisor is a faculty member, or sometimes a committee, from the major department responsible for providing advice regarding graduate studies.

A committee often accomplishes advising for the students in the early stages of their studies.

Assessment and Examinations

Contact the program for information on required assessments and examinations.

Time Constraints

Master’s degree students who have been absent for five or more consecutive years lose all credits that they have earned before their absence. Individual programs may count the coursework students completed prior to their absence for meeting program requirements; that coursework may not count toward Graduate School credit requirements.

Language Requirements

Contact the program for information on any language requirements.

Courses

In addition to language classes each term, students will be required to complete a minimum of 22 non-language (area studies) credits from the course list to be distributed as follows:

  1. Seven courses in Russian, East European and Central Asian studies at or above the 300 level (21 credits). These courses must be distributed over at least three departments. At least 50% of credits applied towards the graduate degree credit requirement must be with courses designed for graduate work. Courses with the graduate level coursework attribute are identified and searchable in the University's Course Guide.
  2. At least 6 of these credits (two courses) must be graduate-level seminars (700 through 900 level). REECAS M.A. students are expected to use original language source material in their graduate seminar papers.
  3. A 1-credit "Introduction to REECAS" module (SLAVIC 755 Topics in Slavic Literature). The course number of this module varies, depending on the home department of the faculty director of CREECA. Students are required to attend the weekly CREECA lecture series and to write four short essays based on the content of those lectures. Papers are read and evaluated by the CREECA director and associate director.
  4. Students may elect to write a master's thesis, but this is not required. This 3-credit, faculty-supervised, independent research course could count toward the required 22 non-language credits, but could not take the place of a required graduate-level seminar. The master's thesis will demonstrate the student's ability to engage in original research in his or her chosen field, including the ability to use original-language material.

Language learning is an integral part of the program, and students will be required to enroll in language courses each term. Students already proficient in their main language will be expected to choose another Slavic or Central Eurasian language for the duration of their program. For degree completion, students must have a minimum of two years of university-level study (or the equivalent) of a regional language with at least three years of study strongly recommended. During the academic year, the program offers Czech, Finnish, Kazak, Persian, Polish, Russian, Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian, and Turkish (Turkish–Azeri).

Agricultural and Applied Economics
A A E/​ECON/​REAL EST/​URB R PL  306 The Real Estate Process3
A A E/​INTL ST  374 The Growth and Development of Nations in the Global Economy3
A A E/​ECON  474 Economic Problems of Developing Areas3
Anthropology
ANTHRO 330 Topics in Ethnology 13-4
ANTHRO 369 Peoples and Cultures of Central and Eastern Europe3-4
ANTHRO/​JEWISH/​RELIG ST  372 Jews of Central and Eastern Europe3-4
ANTHRO 606 Ethnicity, Nations, and Nationalism 13-4
ANTHRO 677 Public Monuments and Symbols 13
ANTHRO 690 Problems in Anthropology 13-4
Art History
ART HIST 310 Early Christian and Byzantine Art3-4
ART HIST 351 20th Century Art in Europe3-4
ART HIST 556 Proseminar in 20th Century European Art 13
ART HIST 805 Seminar-Ancient Art and Architecture 13
ART HIST 815 Seminar-Medieval Art 13
ART HIST 856 Graduate Seminar in Twentieth Century European Art 13
Communication Arts
COM ARTS 352 Film History to 19603
COM ARTS 456 Russian and Soviet Film3
COM ARTS 463 Avant-Garde Film3
COM ARTS 958 Seminar in Film History 12-3
Economics
ECON/​A A E/​REAL EST/​URB R PL  306 The Real Estate Process3
ECON 364 Survey of International Economics3-4
ECON 390 Contemporary Economic Issues 13
ECON 467 International Industrial Organizations 13-4
ECON/​A A E  474 Economic Problems of Developing Areas 13
ECON/​SOC  663 Population and Society 13
Folklore
FOLKLORE/​LITTRANS  347 In Translation: Kalevala and Finnish Folk-Lore3-4
FOLKLORE/​RELIG ST  352 Shamanism3
FOLKLORE/​SCAND ST  443 Sami Culture, Yesterday and Today4
FOLKLORE/​SLAVIC  444 Slavic and East European Folklore3
FOLKLORE 460 Folk Epics 13
Geography
GEOG 318 Introduction to Geopolitics3
GEOG 353 Russia and the NIS-Topical Analysis3
GEOG 518 Power, Place, Identity 13
GEOG 918 Seminar in Political Geography 12-3
History
HISTORY/​MEDIEVAL/​RELIG ST  309 The Crusades: Christianity and Islam3-4
HISTORY/​MEDIEVAL  313 Introduction to Byzantine History and Civilization3-4
HISTORY/​MEDIEVAL  314 Problems in Byzantine History and Civilization 13-4
HISTORY 332 Islam Reform and Revolution in Central Asia3-4
HISTORY 357 The Second World War3-4
HISTORY 359 History of Europe Since 19453-4
HISTORY/​JEWISH  416 Eastern European Jews in the United States, 1880s-1930s3-4
HISTORY 417 History of Russia3-4
HISTORY 418 History of Russia3-4
HISTORY 419 History of Soviet Russia3-4
HISTORY 420 Russian Social and Intellectual History3-4
HISTORY 424 The Soviet Union and the World, 1917-19913-4
HISTORY 425 History of Poland and the Baltic Area3-4
HISTORY 434 American Foreign Relations, 1901 to the Present3-4
HISTORY/​RELIG ST  439 Islamic History From the Origin of Islam to the Ottoman Empire3-4
HISTORY 475 European Social History, 1914-Present3-4
HISTORY 500 Reading Seminar in History 13
HISTORY/​CURRIC/​JEWISH  515 Holocaust: History, Memory and Education3
HISTORY/​JEWISH/​RELIG ST  529 Intellectual and Religious History of European Jewry, 1648-19394
HISTORY 540 Balkans and Middle East, 1700-1918: The Rise of National States3-4
HISTORY/​HIST SCI/​MED HIST/​MEDIEVAL/​S&A PHM  562 Byzantine Medicine and Pharmacy3
HISTORY 600 Advanced Seminar in History 13
HISTORY 753 Seminar-Comparative World History 11-3
HISTORY/​FRENCH/​GERMAN/​POLI SCI/​SOC  804 Interdisciplinary Western European Area Studies Seminar 13
HISTORY 849 Seminar-Topics in History of Imperial Russia, 1649-19171-3
HISTORY 850 Smr-Hist of the Soviet Union & Modern Hist of E Central Europe1-3
HISTORY/​LCA  851 Seminar on Ottoman and Middle East History1-3
HISTORY/​RELIG ST  858 Seminar in Problems of Islamic History2-3
HISTORY 891 Proseminar in Modern European History1-3
International Business
INTL BUS 365 Contemporary Topics 11-3
INTL BUS/​REAL EST  430 International Real Estate 13
INTL BUS/​OTM  755 International Operations: Problems and Administration3
Journalism and Mass Communication
JOURN 620 International Communication 14
JOURN 621 Mass Communication in Developing Nations 14
Languages and Cultures of Asia
LCA 314 Literatures of Central Asia3
LCA/​RELIG ST  357 Literatures of Muslim Societies3
LCA/​AFRICAN/​RELIG ST  370 Islam: Religion and Culture4
LCA/​GEN&WS/​HISTORY  472 Women in Turkish Society3
LCA 579 Fiction and Ethnography in Turkey3
LCA 610 Proseminar: Introduction to Turkic Linguistics3
LCA/​RELIG ST/​SOC  614 Social Structures of Muslim Societies3
LCA 615 Writing Travels 13
LCA 640 Proseminar in Central Asian History3
LCA 850 Seminar in Turkic Studies3
LCA/​HISTORY  851 Seminar on Ottoman and Middle East History1-3
Law
LAW 828 International Transactions2-3
LAW 918 Selected Problems in International Law-Seminar 12-3
LAW 919 The Holocaust: Facts, Trials, Verdicts, Post-Verdicts2
LAW 942 European Union Law2-3
Literature in Translation
LITTRANS/​FOLKLORE  347 In Translation: Kalevala and Finnish Folk-Lore3-4
LITTRANS 455 Modern Serbian and Croatian Literature in Translation3
LITTRANS 473 Polish Literature (in Translation) since 18633
Political Science
POLI SCI 334 Russian Politics3-4
POLI SCI 340 The European Union: Politics and Political Economy3-4
POLI SCI 351 Politics of the World Economy3-4
POLI SCI 401 Selected Topics in Political Science 13-4
POLI SCI 421 The Challenge of Democratization3-4
POLI SCI/​INTL ST  439 The Comparative Study of Genocide3-4
POLI SCI 534 Socialism and Transitions to the Market3-4
POLI SCI 561 Radical Political Theory3-4
POLI SCI/​RELIG ST  618 Political Islam3-4
POLI SCI 654 Politics of Revolution3-4
POLI SCI 659 Politics and Society: Contemporary Eastern Europe3-4
POLI SCI/​FRENCH/​GERMAN/​HISTORY/​SOC  804 Interdisciplinary Western European Area Studies Seminar3
POLI SCI 814 Social Identities: Definition and Measurement 13
POLI SCI 854 Nationalism and Ethnic Conflict3
POLI SCI 948 Seminar: Topics in Comparative Politics 13
POLI SCI 949 Seminar-Post Communist Politics3
Slavic Languages
SLAVIC 302 Zarys historii literatury polskiej3
SLAVIC/​RELIG ST  325 Eastern Christianity/Russian Orthodoxy in a Global Context3
SLAVIC 342 Uvod u srpsku i hrvatsku literaturu3
SLAVIC 350 Special Topics in Russian Language, Literature, and Culture3
SLAVIC 405 Women in Russian Literature3-4
SLAVIC 420 Chekhov3-4
SLAVIC 421 Gogol3-4
SLAVIC 422 Dostoevsky3-4
SLAVIC 424 Tolstoy3-4
SLAVIC 433 History of Russian Culture3
SLAVIC 434 Contemporary Russian Culture3
SLAVIC 439 Russia Today in Literature and Film4
SLAVIC 440 Soviet Literature3-4
SLAVIC 449 Istorija srpske i hrvatske literature3
SLAVIC 454 Moderna srpska i hrvatska literatura3
SLAVIC 470 Historia literatury polskiej do roku 18633
SLAVIC 472 Historia literatury polskiej po roku 18633
SLAVIC/​THEATRE  532 History of Russian Theatre3
SLAVIC 701 Survey of Old Russian Literature2
SLAVIC 702 Eighteenth-Century Russian Literature2
SLAVIC 705 Special Topics in Russian Language/Linguistics3
SLAVIC 755 Topics in Slavic Literature1-3
SLAVIC 801 Slavic Critical Theory and Practice3
SLAVIC 802 The Structure of Russian2
SLAVIC 803 Introduction to Old Church Slavonic and the History of Russian Literary Language2
SLAVIC 804 Methods of Teaching Slavic Languages2
SLAVIC 820 College Teaching of Russian1
Scandinavian Studies
SCAND ST/​FOLKLORE  443 Sami Culture, Yesterday and Today4
SCAND ST/​MEDIEVAL  444 Kalevala and Finnish Folk-Lore4
Sociology
SOC 496 Topics in Sociology 11-3
SOC/​LCA/​RELIG ST  614 Social Structures of Muslim Societies3
SOC 621 Class, State and Ideology: an Introduction to Marxist Social Science 13
SOC 633 Social Stratification 13
SOC/​FRENCH/​GERMAN/​HISTORY/​POLI SCI  804 Interdisciplinary Western European Area Studies Seminar 13
SOC/​C&E SOC  929 Seminar: Class Analysis and Historical Change3
Theatre and Drama
THEATRE/​SLAVIC  532 History of Russian Theatre3
THEATRE 911 Seminar-Problems in Theatre and Drama 12-3
1

When topic is Russia, Eastern Europe, or Central Asia.

Students entering the master's program must have a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution and provide evidence of academic achievement and intellectual ability, including a minimum total grade point average of 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale) and a 3.4 in related area courses, letters of recommendation, and strong scores on the Graduate Record Exam (GRE). There is no minimum admission requirement for language, but students are strongly advised to complete two years of area language study before entering the program.

Applicants for admission to the M.A. degree program in Russian, East European and Central Asian studies should submit an online application. The following materials are required: statement of purpose, official transcripts from all postsecondary institutions attended, three letters of recommendation, Graduate Record Exam (GRE) scores, language questionnaire, and application for university fellowships for incoming students. Speakers of English as a second language must submit Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), or International English Language Testing System (IELTS) scores as well.

Knowledge and Skills

Students who complete the M.A. in Russian, East European, and Central Asian studies (REECAS) in good standing should demonstrate an understanding of the cultural, political, economic, social, and historical factors that that have shaped the development of societies in Eurasia, Russia, and East and Central Europe.

  • Students should be able to articulate, critique, and/or elaborate the theories, research methods, and approaches to inquiry in one or more of the disciplines represented in the interdisciplinary field of Russian, East European, and Central Asian studies (REECAS).
  • Students should be able to identify sources and assemble evidence pertaining to questions or challenges in REECAS.
  • Students should demonstrate an understanding of Russian, East European, and Central Asian studies in a historical, social, or global context.
  • Students should select and utilize appropriate methodologies and practices in one or more of the disciplines represented in the interdisciplinary field of REECAS.
  • Students should evaluate and synthesize information pertaining to questions or challenges in REECAS and should communicate clearly in written and spoken work in ways appropriate to REECAS.

Professional Conduct Learning Goals

  • Students should recognizes and apply principles of ethical and professional conduct in the context of Russian, East European, and Central Asian studies.

Additional Learning Goals

  • Language proficiency: Students will develop speaking, listening, writing, and reading skills in one or more of the languages of Russia, East and Central Europe, and Central Eurasia, and integrate these skills to communicate in a variety of social and academic situations.

Faculty: Professors Gerber (chair) (Sociology), Belodubrovskaya (Communication Arts), Bethea (Slavic Languages), Brenner (Jewish Studies), Buenger (Art History), Chamberlain (History), Ciancia (History), Dale (Art History), Danaher (Slavic Languages), Derin (Languages and Cultures of Asia), Dolinin (Slavic Languages), DuBois (Scandinavian Studies), Evans-Romaine (Slavic Languages), Filipowicz (Slavic Languages), Gehlbach (Political Science), Hendley (Law, Political Science), Herrera (Political Science), Hirsch (History), Hollander (Jewish Studies), Johnson (Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis), Kaiser (Geography), Kepley (Communication Arts), Kydd (Political Science), Lapina (Slavic Languages), Livanos (Comparative Literature), Longinovic (Slavic Languages), McDonald (History), Michels (History), Miernowska (Slavic Languages), Neville (History), Radeloff (Forest and Wildlife Ecology), Reynolds (Slavic Languages), Schamiloglu (Languages and Cultures of Asia), Shevelenko (Slavic), Tishler (CREECA, Slavic Languages), Tumarkin (Slavic Languages), van de Water (Slavic Languages), Wink (History)