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Students exchange programme (SEP) and Freemover programme


At the moment we don’t have the definite information on the format of studies next semester (in person, blended or online), so we will have to contact the applicants with further information when we have it, possibly after the deadline.
For this reason at this point you don’t have to submit medical documents because they will be necessary only in case you will be able to arrive to Russia.


Student Exchange programme is available for students from SPbU partner universities who intend to spend 1 or 2 semesters in SPbU, tuition fee is waived in the framework of bilateral cooperation agreements.
For the information concerning the students who are not from SPbU Partner Universities please see the Freemover (Visiting) Students Programme section at the bottom of this page.

SEP at SPbU is open for both undergraduate and graduate students, and also for postgraduate students who would like to attend lectures and seminars. SEP participants choose 1 host faculty at SPbU to attend lectures, seminars and practical training from the curricula provided for the current exchange period. Average workload for SEP students is 30 ECTS which equals about 20 academic hours per week (1 academic hour or AH = 45 minutes, duration of a class at SPSU is 2 AH = 90 minutes). Minimum number of credits for exchange students is 10 ECTS per semester.

You can read reviews written by previous exchange students at the website of SPbU Ambassadors 

SEP students can also take a free Russian language course (8 ECTS, 8 academic hours per week) during the whole exchange period. Classes are organized usually 2 times per week in groups (10-12 people) depending on students' current language skills. If chosen, Russian language course is included into the workload for SEP students.

SEP students have an opportunity to study at a full-time Russian language programme at the faculty of Philology (30 ECTS, 20 academic hours per week). The course covers the main aspects of the Russian language (Speaking, Listening, Reading, Writing, Grammar etc) and can include other courses, e.g. Russian literature or Media at upper levels. 


SEP student can choose one of the following options:

1) 20 AH per week (10 classes) at the host faculty, no free Russian language course (or additional language courses for an extra fee)

2) 12 AH per week (6 classes) at the host faculty + 8 AH per week of free Russian language course

3) 20 AH per week (10 classes) of Russian language course, no other courses should be selected.

At the end of exchange period SEP students get a Transcript of Records listing all the completed courses with their workload and grades.

SPbU grading scale related to ECTS grading system:

Grade Grade name ECTS grade Performance % Description
5 Отлично (Excellent) A 100-90 Outstanding performance
4 Хорошо (Good) B-C 89-70 Above average standard but with some errors
3 Удовлетворительно (Satisfactory) D 69-50 Fair but with significant shortcomings
2 Неудовлетворительно (Fail) F <49 Substantial improvement necessary; requirement of further work


  • 1 semester (minimum 4 months)
  • 1 academic year (2 consecutive semesters, maximum 10 months starting from September only)


We consider a SEP application only if it is submitted through the online form 

Please, note that the form will not be submitted without the necessary documents. Important! Problems may occur if your documents are bigger than 1,5 mb. Please, make sure that each document attached is not more than 1,5 mb! 

After submitting the online form you will receive a copy of it to your e-mail. If you don't receive a copy of your application, please, write an e-mail to e.petryanina@spbu.ru to check your application have been received.

At the present time we DO NOT require original application documents to be sent by post.


Exchange period Terms Deadline
Autumn semester September 01 - January 31 May 01
Spring semester February 01 - June 30 October 10
Full Academic year September 01 - June 30 May 01

Please, note that students can be accepted for full academic year starting from September only! Students who come to SPbU in February can be accepted for 1 semester maximum.


Please, submit your application through the online form. The following documents should be attached to the form (obligatory documents are marked with *)

1. Nomination letter by Applicant's Home University Exchange Coordinator (necessary for exchange students (coming within a bilateral agreement or Erasmus+ programme), we can also accept nomination by e-mail - in this case please attach a printscreen of the e-mail to the online application form; not necessary for freemover (fee-paying) students)

2. Motivation letter* in Russian or English (.doc or .pdf, free format, app.1 page long – why you’ve chosen SPbU and what you are going to study here; please name the document “motivation_surname_name”)

3. Study Plan*pdfdoc. (please, name “plan_surname_name”)
SPbU Academic Offer can be found here http://ifea.spbu.ru/en/academic-offer 
If you already have a learning agreement from your home university, you can submit it instead of the Study Plan. The plan doesn't have to be signed at the moment of application.

4. Copy of travelling passport* (.jpg or .pdf, page with photo, full and readable copy; if you need visa, your passport should be valid at least 1,5 years after the beginning of the exchange period; please, name “passport_surname_name”)

Applicant's passport should be valid minimum 1,5 years after the beginning of planned exchange period! Otherwise Applicant will be unable to get Russian visa.

5. Confirmation of language proficiency* (Please, attach the confirmation of the language you're going to study in - Russian or English; language proficiency certificate not obligatory but still can be attached for students coming to full-time Russian language courses; obligatory in all other cases; please, name “language_surname_name”)

This could be either an International Certificate, or a letter signed by Applicant's Home University Russian language teacher indicating Applicant's current language proficiency in accordance with the European Language Level Self Assessment Grid.

To apply for the courses taught in Russian students need to provide a certificate proving their level of the Russian language – B2 minimum. To apply for the courses taught in English students should provide a certificate of English language proficiency – B2 minimum. Students applying for full-time Russian language course don't have to provide a language certificate.

If the language you're going to study in is your native language, you don't need to provide a certificate of language proficiency.

6. Photo for documents 3*4, .jpg, good quality (not smaller than 450*600pix)

7. General health certificate in Russian or English language 

This should be a certificate proving that the Applicant is in a well state of health (absence of infectious and pulmonary diseases, no contra-indications for studying abroad), signed and stamped by your local doctor. HIV test is also required. We advise to make HIV test 1 or 2 months before coming to SPbU, because it's usually necessary for the visa application to Russia, but is valid only for 3 months, thus it can be sent by e-mail later and not enclosed to the application.
The certificates are accepted in Russian or English language. If the certificate is in any other language, it should be officially translated into English or Russian (including translation of stamps and signatures).
Please, note that lung x-ray results are obligatory for the dormitory. If the lung x-ray results are not submitted to the dormitory upon check-in, the dormitory administration may require that you go to a local hospital and make x-ray on the same day.

8. Transcript of Records (if any, please, name “transcript_surname_name”)

9. Copies of previous visas to the Russian Federation (if any).


If you're not interested in taking courses, but plan to conduct research at Saint-Petersburg University, you can come to SPbU for short period (from 3 months to 1 year).

In this case you need to submit the following documents via the online form: Motivation letter*; Copy of travelling passport* - page with photo; Research plan (in free form); Letter from SPbU professor confirming his consent to supervise the planned research; General health certificate in Russian or English language (in free form, please, note that lung x-ray is obligatory for the dormitory; Nomination letter (in case of applying under exchange programme conditions). 

Admission to short-term research internships are possible either under exchange programme conditions or on fee-paying basis. Please, note that if you come on fee-paying basis, you pay for the whole semester of studies even if your research period is shorter.

The deadline for application is at least 2 months before the planned beginning of the studies/research.


Freemover (visiting) students programme is available for students who study at non-partner Universities or not selected by their home University but who want to study selected courses at SPbU for 1 or 2 semesters without getting SPbU degree, applicants are accepted on fee-paying basis.Tuition fees are 141400-269900 rubles per semester depending on the chosen field of studies.

Application procedure for the visiting students is the same as for the SEP students except for the nomination from their home University, which is not necessary.


If you have already finished your non-degree studies, you can leave your review here.


Here you can find materials about exchange and freemover opportunities at SPbU.