Slava Paperno (director)
Krystyna Golovakova
Raissa Krivitsky
Viktoria Tsimberov
Richard L. Leed (1929-2011)
Lora Paperno (retired)

Requirements, etc.
2016 survey

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Russian 1104: Course Description

This course description may be changed after the Organizational Meeting (see Current Announcements on the home page).

The course objectives, course materials and the nature of the assignments are described below. See Syllabus for dates and details. See Rooms and times for meeting times and places.

This course is designed to reinforce vocabulary and grammar introduced in Russian 1122; develop fluency, accuracy, and authentic flair of speech by practicing conversation in Russian on a variety of topics; and learn about life and customs in Russia through acting out various situations.

Workload: around 40 minutes of preparation are expected for each class.


Lora's Dialogs. Part 2

This on-line resource with sound recordings contains hundreds of four-line dialogs that suggest useful conversation patterns with room for variation and improvisation. Both fun and practical, these dialogs are not only practiced and memorized, but also serve as models for students' creativity. Lora's Dialogs Web site does not require registration or log in. It can be used with all popular modern browsers (Edge, Internet Explorer 11, Firefox, Chrome, Safari, and Opera) in Windows and Mac OSX as well as on some tablets. See the link under Online course materials. Each assignment in the Syllabus is also linked to the appropriate chapter. While using the site, click unfamiliar words for their translations. Click the buttons in the Почему? (Why?) section for grammatical explanations. (You will also see Lora's Dialogs in your Web Audio Lab home page menu, but you can ignore it: that is the version that allows you to make your own recordings, which is not a requirement for this course.)


Click the links in the Syllabus and read, practice (with substitutions), and memorize the three dialogs assigned for the class. Prepare to recite these dialogs in class with little or no prompting. Pay special attention to using correct grammatical forms of the substitution words.

In addition to memorizing the assigned dialogs, write and bring to class a two-line dialog of your own on a related topic. For the final class of the semester, students in groups of two or more will write and perform a skit, in which each participant should recite no less than four lines.

Grading and tests:

There are no tests and no written assignments in this course. Your course grade will depend on your performance in class throughout the entire semester The grading criteria and the roughly estimated value of each component of your performance are as follows:

  • Demonstrated knowledge and grammatically accurate presentation of the three assigned dialogs, 60%.
  • Quality of the two-line dialogs that you write for each class with regard to the use of new vocabulary and grammatical accuracy, 20%.
  • The final skit, 10%.
  • Participation rate; emerging fluency; ability to maintain an improvised conversation based on familiar material and situations, 10%.


This course is highly interactive, therefore regular attendance is mandatory. Missing more than 3 classes without a good reason will affect your grade. It is your responsibility to notify the instructor about the nature of your absence. Advance notice will be appreciated.

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Dept. of Comparative Literature • Russian Language Program • 240 Goldwin Smith Hall • Cornell University • Ithaca, NY 14853-4701, USA
tel. 607/255-4155 • fax 607/255-8177 • email