Summer Russian Language and Area Studies Program

Learn Russian in the EU offers an intensive summer Russian program in Daugavpils, Latvia. This program is based upon many years of our experience in providing highly successful summer programs for universities, federal service academies, Project GO, and other institutional customers from the USA and Europe.

The summer program will help student boost practical communication skills and confidence in using the language, extend active vocabulary, refine grammar, and explore Russian and Baltic culture, history, traditions, and lifestyle.




  • Intensive 6-week language study.
  • 140 instruction hours with Daugavpils University professors.
  • 12 ECTS (6 US) credits in Russian language and area studies at Daugavpils University (contact us for the course descriptions).
  • Conversation practice with native Russian communication tutors is included, 12 hours.

Special advantages

  • Full Russian language immersion in Daugavpils, the Russian-language enclave in Latvia.
  • Homestay in vetted and trained Russian-speaking host families, breakfast and dinner included.
  • The area studies course provided in adjusted Russian and augmented with study trips.
  • Expert guest speakers.


Daugavpils University

Daugavpils University hosts the Summer Russian Language and Area Studies Program.

No entry visa required

Citizens of the USA, European Union, Great Britain, and many other countries need no visa to enter Latvia.

Russian language level

Native Russian professors provide Russian language instruction at Intermediate and Advanced levels.

Conversation practice

Conversation practice with native Russian communication tutors is included, 10 hours.

Russian host families

Homestay is provided in vetted and trained Russian-speaking host families, breakfast and dinner included.

Language immersion

In Daugavpils, modern standard Russian is the primary language of daily communication.

Student services

Two-way transfer, in-country orientation, transportation passes, as well as 24/7 support will be provided.

Safety and health

Daugavpils is very safe. We provide local insurance and help students deal with healthcare providers.


Amazing region

  • Daugavpils, once part of both the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union, has a remarkable historical legacy tied to Russian-European relations.
  • Different communities – Russian, Latvian, Latgalian, Jewish, Polish, Belarusian, Roma – have been living in Daugavpils for centuries;
  • Daugavpils military history includes Napoleon invasion, WW1, the Latvian War for Independence, WW2 and the Holocaust.

Local workday excursions and events

  • Daugavpils multicultural history: ethnic and confessional diversity, Russian Old Believers ethnographic site, Mark Rothko Art Center;
  • Military history: Dinaburg Fortress, military memorials of different wars and armies, and the Holocaust memorial;
  • Russian traditional banya, culture classes (cooking, dance, and music), sports events.

Study trip around Latvia

  • 2 nights in a hotel included;
  • Riga: Medieval Old Town, Art Nouveau architecture, the Museum of Occupation, and Memorial of Zhanis Lipke, a rescuer of Jews in WW2, Salaspils Nazi camp memorial;
  • Jurmala sea resort, Rundale Palace – a Baroque masterpiece built for the Dukes of Courland;
  • Biržai historical brewery.

Study trip to Lithuania

  • 2 nights in a hotel included;
  • Vilnius: history tour, the Museum of KGB, the Alexander Pushkin Literary Museum in the poet son’s Gregory 19th century residence, and tasting Lithuanian cuisine;
  • Trakai: Karaite culture and cuisine, medieval Trakai Island Castle – the residence of Grand Duke of Lithuania;
  • Kaunas: cultural heritage and the 9th Fort Holocaust Memorial.


Application deadline

May 1, 2023

Program fee payment

May 15, 2023

Recommended arrival in Latvia

July 9, 2023

The first day of classes

July 10, 2023

The last day of classes

August 11, 2023

Transfer to Riga for departure

August 12, 2023

what people say

Student Testimonials

see all


Conor studied Russian on our academic year program at Daugavpils University. He thinks Daugavpils is a convenient and interesting town. He appreciates kind and welcoming people in Daugavpils.

USA, Washington

Learn Russian in the EU: Semester Abroad

You will hear from students, studying in different academic semester abroad programs at Daugavpils University. They have come from all over USA.


Wilton, from Alaska, is on his second “Learn Russian in the EU” study abroad program in Daugavpils. Four years ago, he came for six weeks and now he is on a semester-long program. (more…)


Frequently Asked

  • Is Daugavpils a Russian-speaking city?

    Daugavpils is a Russian-speaking city. More, it is the largest Russian-speaking city in the European Union and NATO.

    At least 80% of people speak Russian as their first or bilingual language. More than 95% of people speak Russian fluently.

    In Daugavpils, Russian is the primary language of everyday communication.

  • Do you provide credit transfer?

    Yes. Daugavpils University awards European Credit Transfer System (ECTS) credits, the standard for most European countries. ECTS credits are widely accepted by institutions around the world.

    All international students enrolled in Russian-language study abroad programs at DU, regardless their academic level and picked DU courses, are administered through the ‘Eastern European Culture and Business Relations” study program. This originates in DU internal process management. Therefore, all courses listed in the transcripts, issued by DU to students at Russian-language study abroad programs, include a reference to the “Eastern European Culture and Business Relations’ program.

    Course codes at DU are assigned without any relation to the semester or year of study.

    Please find official information on the Latvian grading system here.

  • Who is eligible for undergraduate study abroad programs?

    Anyone over the age of 18 who is studying at a university may apply to an AY/Semester study abroad program with Learn Russian in the EU.

    We highly recommend considering study abroad after reaching some strong foundation in the Russian language, e.g. Novice High ACTFL proficiency level or A1.1-A2 on the European CEFR scale.

  • Are the courses taught in Russian?

    Russian is the primary language of instruction. All language, literature, and courses are taught in Russian.

    Courses in history, political science, and area studies will be also taught in Russian. Professors will adjust the language to help students follow the explanations. English presentations and materials may be used.

    Natural Sciences/STEM instructors are English- and Russian-speaking Daugavpils University professors. The language of instruction varies from English-only to English/Russian mix and up to Russian-only, depending on the instructor and the course.

  • How the classes are organized?

    Learn Russian in the EU forms study groups exclusively from international students. Thus, your classmates will be of a similar background and with similar training objectives.

    Elective courses may be delivered in groups or in one-on-one setting. These courses are usually taught in Russian, though teachers can add English explanations when required. Many professors speak English.

  • Do you provide host family accommodation?

    Yes. Staying with Russian-speaking host families is the most popular lodging option among our students.

    We have implemented a system of selecting, vetting, instructing, and monitoring host families. They are our partners and provide valuable help in acquiring the language, traditions, and culture.

  • How can I secure my place?

    First of all, we need an application submitted through our website. Upon receiving the application, we will e-mail the student an acceptance confirmation letter.

    Then, we will open a personal student account in our IT system and send detailed instructions.
    Please see more in the Preparations timeline.

  • How long is an academic hour?

    Daugavpils University uses 45-minute academic hour. The lessons are usually run in pairs, with a short break in the middle.

  • What is the academic calendar?

    Learn Russian in the EU Fall Semester study abroad programs hosted at Daugavpils University usually begin on September 1st and run for 16 weeks.

    Spring semester study abroad programs usually begin on February 1 and run for 16 weeks.

    There are no official breaks during a semester.

  • Are university courses available in the program?

    Yes. All undergraduate courses available through Learn Russian in the EU study abroad programs, are provided by Daugavpils University (DU). This guarantees their European and worldwide recognition. DU is a member of European University Association (EUA). DU diplomas are certified by the European Commission.

    Daugavpils University, established in 1921, is the foremost academic and research institution in Eastern Latvia. Its Department of Russian and Slavic Linguistics has a long tradition of research and instruction in the Russian language and literature. The department offers Bachelor’s, Master’s and Doctoral programs in Russian philology, pedagogy, and intercultural communication.

  • Native Russian conversation tutors

    Native Russian conversation tutors are not teachers and, as a rule, their service is a part of a teacher-led language course. Conversation tutors specialize in running communication sessions on the teacher assigned topic or scenario, and can correct the student or give a hint, when required.

  • Cancellations

    In case after the first trial session a student decides to drop the course, we refund the initial payment.

    If a student misses a scheduled class, we make no refunds.

    If a student needs to interrupt the course, the request should be e-mailed to us in advance any lesson is missed. We can negotiate the dates for continuing the remaining part of the course, but make no refunds.

Entry requirements
and documents


Passport scan

Daugavpils University application

Current enrollment verification (a letter from the home university confirming good academic standing and the number of full semesters of university Russian will be completed by the start of the program with Learn Russian in the EU)

Host family placement form

Health Declaration


Download the Preparations timeline PDF


Participation Confirmation Fee
100 €
Participation Confirmation Fee
Study program, credit transfer, excursions and trips
3990 €
Lodging in a host family, breakfast and dinner included
1200 €
Registration, transfer, insurance, local SIM, welcome kit
280 €
5470 €
Apply now