Russian Language Placement and Exemption Exam
UCI students who speak and read Russian can take a placement exam or an exemption exam to satisfy Category VI and VIII General Education requirements.

Russian Placement Exam

1. How can I enroll in a Russian course?

If you are interested in enrolling in Russian 1A:

No placement test is required. You may enroll directly through WebReg if space permits. Please visit the Schedule of Classes to view course offerings and seat availability.

If you are interested in enrolling in a level above 1A:

You must take the Russian Placement Test to receive course placement and enrollment authorization. See below for more information on the test. After you take the placement test a faculty member will contact you to discuss your placement.

2. What is the purpose of the Russian Placement test? 

The purpose of the Russian Placement Test is to assess your preparation for course work in Russian at UCI. Students will be placed into one of the following courses: Russian 1B, 1C, 2A, 2B or 2C. 

3. Who needs to take courses in Russian?

Successful completion of lower-division course work (or the equivalent) is required for Russian minors, and may be used to satisfy the foreign language requirement in the School of Humanities.

Completion of Russian course work through the 1C level may also be used to satisfy UCI’s Language Other Than English (Category VI General Education Requirement Policy) requirement. Students majoring in International Studies must satisfy Language Other Than English requirements through the 2C level. Please consult your academic advisor.

4. What should I study before the examination?

You should review both vocabulary and grammar. You should also practice vocabulary and grammar that allow you to perform the following tasks: exchanging common greetings; talking about family, and friends; talking about your likes and dislikes; asking about locations and giving directions, talking about education and academic interests.

You also may consult the following textbook used in first-year and second-year language classes at UCI:

First year textbook:

Second year textbook:

Kudyma, Anna S. (2022). Russian: From Novice High to Intermediate. Abingdon, Oxon; New York, NY: Routledge.

5. How long is the test?

The Russian placement test is 60 minutes and has 60 questions. It has three multiple-choice sections.

    1. Vocabulary and Grammar
    2. Reading
    3. Listening 

6. How long are the results valid? 

    The results are valid for your entire academic career at UCI. You may take the test only one time. Please be advised that if you take the test more often than allowed, your new results will not be reported.

    7. Is test registration required?

    Yes. Test registration is always required. You may schedule an appointment online through Campus Groups.

    8. Do I need an ID to take a placement test? 

    Yes. You will need two forms of valid photo I.D.

    Examples of valid photo I.D. are:

      • a UCI, other university, or high school I.D.;
      • a photo-bearing driver’s license;
      • a state-issued identification card with photo;
      • a valid passport;
      • or any government-issued identification bearing a photo.

    If you need further information, please e-mail the Academic Testing Center at, call our office at (949) 824-6207, or contact your academic counseling office.

    Russian Exemption Exam

    The Russian Exemption Test is offered to students as an alternative means for satisfying the Language Other Than English (Category VI General Education Requirement Policy) and the International/Global Issues (Category VIII General Education Requirement Policy) requirements. You should take this test if you have a strong background in Russian and not interested in taking additional course work. You may schedule an appointment online through Campus Groups.

    This test is not a placement test. If you want to enroll in a Russian language course at UCI, you must take the Russian placement test. 

    The Russian exemption test is 2 hours long and consists of five sections:

      1. Listening comprehension
      2. Vocabulary and grammar 
      3. Reading comprehension
      4. Numbers
      5. Essay

    An oral interview will be required after you complete the written test. A faculty member in the Russian program will contact you to set up the oral interview.

    This test may be taken only once. No University credit is given. There is no fee to take the test if you are a UCI student. You must present two two valid forms of photo ID when you take the test.

    To prepare for the exam:

    You should review your Russian writing and speaking skills.

    For basic grammar and vocabulary review you may consult the following textbooks used in first-year and second-year language classes at UCI:

    Kudyma, Anna, Frank J. Miller, and Olga Kagan. Beginner’s Russian with Interactive Online Workbook: A Basic Russian Course. New York: Hippocrene Books, 2010.

    Kagan, Olga, and Frank J. Miller. Puti: Russian Grammar in Context . Upper Saddle River, N.J: Prentice Hall, 2007.

    Successful completion of the Russian Exemption Examination will result in a notation on the student’s record that indicates that the student has shown competence beyond the second-year level of Russian. Students who do not pass the examination will receive a recommendation for their course level in Russian.

    If you need further information on language breadth testing, please e-mail the Academic Testing Center at, call our office at (949) 824-6207, or contact your academic counseling office.