REES Major

The Bachelor's Degree Program in Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies (REES) offers majors a broad background in the history, economy, government, geography, culture, international relations, languages, and literatures of the countries of the former Soviet Union and/or Eastern Europe. The degree prepares majors for graduate study as well as professional opportunities in areas ranging from government to business to teaching. As Russian, East European, and Eurasian participation in global economics and politics continues and evolves, REES majors find themselves in numerous and varied professions. Through interdisciplinary study involving the Departments of Anthropology, Economics, History, Political Science, Screen Arts and Cultures, Slavic Languages and Literatures, and Sociology, students may develop a comprehensive program or one with a specialization. The REES program provides graduates with additional skills that may be applied to their knowledge of a specific region. These include awareness of other cultures and peoples, as well as analytic, interpersonal, and language skills.

The REES Major

The undergraduate curriculum in REES offers broad, interdisciplinary training for students who wish to acquire extensive knowledge of a country or countries of the former Soviet Union and East Central Europe. Proficiency in a language of the region is an important component of the REES major. The requirements for the B.A./B.S. program are as follows:


  • Russian 231 (Introduction to Russian Culture) OR 
  • Slavic 225 (Arts and Cultures of Central Europe)


A minimum of 30 credits, including:

  • Two of the following REEES courses:
    • 340. From Genghis Khan to the Taliban: Modern Central Asia
    • 395. Survey of Russia: The Russian Empire, the Soviet Union, and the Successor States
    • 396/397. Survey of Central and Eastern Europe and the Enlarged European Union OR Communism and Capitalism in Eastern Europe.
  • Completion of REEES 401 or equivalent, a seminar from which students produce an in-depth research paper focusing on the region.
  • 20 credits of REES-approved upper-level (300-400) courses on the region including the following distributions:
    • Geographic distribution. At least one 3-credit course in each sub-area (Russia, Eastern Europe, and Central Eurasia).
    • Disciplinary distribution. At least one 3-credit course in each sub-area (arts/culture, history, and social science). 
  • Language Proficiency. Students must show proficiency at the level equivalent to three complete years of Russian or Polish, or two years for other REE-area languages, as demonstrated either by a placement test or by a grade of B- or higher in the final term.*
  • Language Training. All students in the REES concentration must complete at least two years (four terms) of relevant university-level language training for a grade.*
    *See the REES LSA Bulletin listing for complete details on language proficiency and training.

REES Undergraduate Major Worksheet


Undergraduate REES majors who have maintained a 3.5 average in REES courses and a 3.4 overall GPA may apply for admission to the REES Honors Program. For further information, schedule an advising appointment


The first meeting with the Academic Advisor should be scheduled during the second term of the sophomore year to declare the major. Appointments can be made using the LSA Advising Appointment System. Visit the International Institute website for more about undergraduate advising.