As you may imagine, there are few schools inGreat Britainwhich
offer Russian beyond GCSE. As a result, by deciding to take Russian
to AS and/or A2, you will be choosing a subject which is not only
fascinating in its own right, but also one which carries a certain
rarity value and which, atBoltonSchool, is exceptionally
well-taught. To be able to say that you have a command of a
language as complex and as mesmerising as Russian certainly stands
out on any CV and can only serve to help you in the competitive
world in which we live.
What will I study?
The Edexcel course that we follow will appeal to keen linguists,
who enjoy being stretched by a wide and varied diet of cultural and
linguistic materials. As you would expect at this level, the course
is broad, offering students the chance to look at everything from
politics and social issues through to the media and the arts. You
can expect your understanding ofRussia, its history and its culture
to expand immeasurably and your linguistic skills to develop
considerably over the duration of the course.
How will I be assessed?
At AS, students will have to take two units, which look to cover
the four key skills of listening, reading, writing and speaking.
The examinations take place in June.
Spoken Expression and Response in
(30% of total AS mark)
(15% of total GCE mark)
Understanding and Written Response in Russian
2 hours 30 minutes
(70% of total AS mark)
(35% of total GCE mark)
Those taking Russian to A2 will take an additional two units, as
detailed below. At this stage, students will be expected to work
far more independently than previously, as not only will they have
to research their prepared topic for oral discussion, but also make
the necessary preparations for their research-based essay (180-200
words). As with AS, these examinations take place in
June. There is no coursework element at either AS or A2.
Understanding and Spoken Response in
(35% of total A2 mark)
(17.5% of total GCE mark)
Research, Understanding and Written Response in Russian
2 hour 30 minutes
(65% of total A2 mark)
(32.5% of total GCE mark)
Although the study of Russian at this level demands a high
degree of intellectual rigour and linguistic competence, crucially,
it requires a committed and focused approach; without this, no
pupil, whatever his ability, can expect to fulfil his potential.
Pupils considering Russian at AS/A2 should have anticipated
achieving an A-grade or higher at GCSE. Those who have managed a
B-grade at GCSE are more than welcome to consider taking Russian at
this level, but should be fully aware of the demanding nature of
Where will it lead?
The links between Russia, the former Soviet Republics and the
West continue to grow rapidly. Employment opportunities now exist
in all spheres ranging from journalism and publishing to business
and industry. Pupils who have been able to offer Russian at
Advanced Level have found that they have received more favourable
offers from universities keen to snap them up, not just for the
linguistic talents they possess, but also for the logical and
deductive skills they have developed. Ultimately, however, where
Russian takes you depends very much on you.