Module and Programme Catalogue

Search site

Find information on

This module is inactive in the selected year. The information shown below is for the academic year that the module was last running in, prior to the year selected.

2023/24 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

SLAV3117 The Sounds of Russian

20 creditsClass Size: 15

Module manager: Dr James Wilson

Taught: Semesters 1 & 2 (Sep to Jun) View Timetable

Year running 2023/24

Pre-requisite qualifications

Familiarity with the Cyrillic alphabet and a basic grasp of spoken Russian are essential.

This module is mutually exclusive with

SLAV2111The Sounds of Russian
SLAV2112The Sounds of Russian

This module is approved as a discovery module

Module summary

This module focuses on the Russian sound system, Contemporary Standard Russian pronunciation and regional phonological variation in Russia and other Russian-speaking countries. You will be introduced to disciplines of linguistics such as phonetics, phonology, sociolinguistics and dialectology. You will study the relationship between phonetics and phonology (and the phone and phoneme), the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) and conventions of transliteration and phonemic/phonetic transcription, the phonology of modern Russian, and issues in Russian dialectology and sociolinguistics. The module is of practical value to your general language studies in that you will cover in depth various phonetic and phonological processes affecting pronunciation. You will also be introduced to linguistic fieldwork and methods of gathering and analysing speech and you will propose a hypothetical empirical sociolinguistic study. The module is taught and assessed in English.


The module aims to introduce students to:
- phonetics and phonology;
- linguistic conventions and transcription systems;
- the phonological system and rules of Russian;
- regional variation in Russia;
- sociolinguistics and dialectology.

Learning outcomes
On completion of the module students should:
- have an excellent knowledge of the Russian sound system and phonological rules affecting Russian consonants and vowels and be able to apply this knowledge in practice;
- know how to use the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA), various systems of transliteration and phonemic/phonetic writing and be able to apply these conventions appropriately in academic writing;
- have a clear understanding of dialectology and sociolinguistics and know how to plan, carry out and analyse the results of an empirical language survey;
- have acquired the skills essential to produce extended pieces of academic writing on topics in Russian and Slavonic linguistics, using correct linguistic notation and appropriate discipline-specific language;
- demonstrate the ability to disseminate research orally in a conference-style formal presentation.

Skills outcomes
On completion of this module students should:
- show advanced research skills;
- demonstrate an ability to disseminate independent research in a formal oral presentation;
- have acquired advanced linguistic and analytical skills;
- be able to engage in critical debate around issues on Russian and Slavonic linguistics;
- demonstrate the capacity for independent thought and judgement;
- be able to produce a piece of extended academic writing using correct linguistic notation and appropriate discipline-specific vocabulary.


The module is structured around the following broad topics:
- the role of phonetics and pronunciation in language learning;
- phonetics and the phone;
- phonology and the phoneme;
- the Russian sound system (vowels and consonants and processes that affect them);
- dialectology and regional variation in Russia;
- issues in Russian sociolinguistics;
- sociolinguistic methodology and planning an empirical study.

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Private study hours180.00
Total Contact hours20.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)200.00

Private study

180 hours of independent study to supplement in-class tuition. Students are expected to carry out weekly homework assignments and revise material covered in class on a regular basis.

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

- There will be short weekly homework tasks and regular written and oral exercises not formally assessed for the purposes of formative feedback
- Students' contributions in seminar discussions
- Staff are available outside class in their Office Hours for further guidance
- Class participation will also be used to monitor progress.

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Essay or Dissertation4,000 word essay80.00
Presentation15 minute verbal presentation in a conference format20.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

Normally resits will be assessed by the same methodology as the first attempt, unless otherwise stated

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 28/04/2023 14:46:41


Browse Other Catalogues

Errors, omissions, failed links etc should be notified to the Catalogue Team.PROD

© Copyright Leeds 2019