RUSSIA: Still no three-year degrees

I write concerning Nick Holdsworth's story – "Bologna about to take root" – which mentions that Russian universities and degree awarding colleges will offer three-year bachelor degrees from 2009. Actually, since 1992 four-year bachelor degree programmes have existed in Russia. From 2009 we are going to adopt a new generation of State Educational Standards. The main innovation concerning bachelor degrees is that the programme will be developed in ‘units’ (equivalent to ECTS credits) instead of academic hours. A bachelor programme will be 240 units – equivalent to four years of full-time study. Three-year programmes will be possible only where credits are transferred from previous tertiary level studies.

* Zoya Shardyko is head of the credentials evaluation laboratory, St Petersburg State Polytechnical University, Russia.