First-Year Russian, Part 1

First-Year Russian, Part 1

RUSS 041 | Teacher-Led | High School | UC Approved

In this introduction to Russian language, culture, and history, students will develop basic skills in speaking, listening, reading, and writing. They will be introduced to basic grammar concepts and vocabulary. Cultural highlights will introduce students to Russia and the Russian people. This course also features live one-on-one speaking appointments, a student discussion board, and an instructor-hosted wiki. There is a strong emphasis on learning to speak the language, as well as read and write it. This is the first course in a four-part Russian series (RUSS 041, RUSS 043, RUSS 051, and RUSS 053).

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Description & Outline What You Should Already Know Learning Outcomes Course Materials Course Organization Assignments Exams Grading Copyright Notice Accessibility Notice Course Policies

In this introduction to Russian language, culture, and history, students will develop basic skills in speaking, listening, reading, and writing. They will be introduced to basic grammar concepts and vocabulary. Cultural highlights will introduce students to Russia and the Russian people. This course also features live one-on-one speaking appointments, a student discussion board, and an instructor-hosted wiki. There is a strong emphasis on learning to speak the language, as well as read and write it. This is the first course in a four-part Russian series (RUSS 041, RUSS 043, RUSS 051, and RUSS 053).

Students will need access to a computer with high speed Internet access, a microphone, speakers (or headphones), and a webcam. There are no resubmissions or retakes on instructor-graded assignments, unit quizzes (including the midterm quiz and cumulative review quiz) or the final exam. On speaking appointments, lowest score may be dropped. You must complete the speaking appointment in each unit before you can move on to the next unit.

Course Outline:

Unit 1: You Already Know a Little Russian

Unit 2: Greetings and Introdutions

Unit 3: Making Sense of Russian Grammar

Unit 4: Small Talk

Unit 5: Descriptions of Things and People

Unit 6: Times and Tenses

Unit 7: At Home

Quick Links

Course Materials

Assignments

Exams

Grading

This is a beginning course, so there are no prerequisites for this course.

By the end of this course, you will be able to do the following:

  • Read and write in Russian using the Cyrillic alphabet.
  • Tell about yourself, your family, your likes and dislikes, and your daily and weekly activities.
  • Describe your family members and things in your home.
  • Apply basic Russian grammar concepts of using nouns, pronouns, adjectives, adverbs, numerals, and verbs to form simple sentences.
  • Use useful phrases in different situations throughout the course.
  • Identify key cultural facts about Russia and Russia’s culture and history.

To successfully complete this course you will need the following:

  • Access to the online course materials, which will serve as a textbook and an instruction guide for the course.
  • A desire to work hard, thirty minutes a day for practice, and people to encourage you in your effort to learn the language.
  • Speaking appointments are required and use audio and video. You will need a headset or speakers, a microphone and a webcam. For optimal connection speeds during speaking appointments, it is recommended that you use a hard-wired, high-speed internet connection during the appointment.

This course contains seven units and a final exam. Each unit consists of an introduction, lesson objectives, discussion material, and a Self Check section with its corresponding answers. The discussion material includes new vocabulary, pictures, examples, listening, speaking, writing, and reading practice activities. Most of the grammar concepts are presented in table format, which will help you understand the information in the best way. The audio material features native Russian speakers to provide you with good examples of correct pronunciation.

Other Resources

There is a course discussion board at the end of the course, as well as a course wiki. The discussion board is designed for students to connect, discuss course-related matters, and share ideas with each other. The wiki is designed for the instructor to post information that may provide enrichment or relevant information for the course to the students.

Technical Considerations

In order for the Flash games to perform properly, and for the pages to display correctly, you must have the most current version of either Firefox or Chrome, and the most current Flash player installed. If some of the games don't seem to work quite right, or you can't see all of the options, try downloading a newer version of the Flash player to fix the problem. This course functions best in a web browser other than Internet Explorer. If you only have Internet Explorer, you can download other browsers (e.g., Firefox, Safari, etc.) for free online. If you have trouble doing this, contact Technical Support at 1-877-897-8085 or istech@byu.edu.

Self Checks

There are Self Check “quizzes” in each lesson intended to help you review the material covered in that lesson. Self Checks are designed to be taken over and over as many times as you wish, to help you gain greater mastery of the concepts or skills being tested. If you find that you do not know or are not certain about an answer, go back to the lesson material and reread the section pertaining to that question. If you don't like your grade on a given Self Check, retake it until you are satisfied with the grade. The points from these Self Checks count toward the participation portion of your final grade.

Unit Quizzes

There are seven unit quizzes throughout the course. These assignments are submitted electronically, with the grade immediately revealed. Incorrect answers will be noted, and an explanation of why the student’s answer was incorrect will be included. Questions will be taken from the textbook and the readings. Unit quizzes account for 25% of your final grade.

Writing

You will be required to complete seven writing assignments paced throughout the course. These should be submitted electronically through the dropbox and will be graded by the instructor/teaching assistant. Grading will be based on provided rubrics associated with each assignment. Graded assignments will be returned with comments. These assignments count toward 20% of your final grade.

Conversation Café and Speaking Appointments

The Conversation Café is a virtual room where conversation practice and speaking appointments take place. Minimal English is used in the Café. Activities are moderated by a TA/instructor. Hours of the Café are posted on the Communication and Conversation Café page. Spend as much time as possible in the Café, practicing the concepts you learn! Before you complete your speaking appointment, you must spend some time practicing in the Conversation Café. You must complete the first Conversation Café to move on in the course.

Speaking appointments are graded oral assessments. You will be required to complete certain language tasks or have a dialogue with the TA/instructor during your speaking appointment. A speaking appointment is a required part of every unit and must be completed before you move on to the next unit. TA-graded speaking appointments are completed on a first-come, first-served basis (no scheduling) in the Conversation Café room. The second, fifth, and final exam speaking appointments will be scheduled with your instructor and will take place in the instructor’s virtual room. These appointments require a photo ID and a webcam. If you are not able to keep your scheduled appointment, you must reschedule or cancel at least 24 hours before the appointment. If you fail to show up at your scheduled time, you will receive a 0.

A grade will be posted within 24 hours of the appointment. The lowest score from all of your speaking appointments will be dropped. (This does not include the final speaking appointment.) See “Grading” below to see what percentage of your final grade the speaking appointments are on.

We strongly encourage you not to use notes during your speaking appointments. That will help you be better prepared for the final speaking appointment where no notes are allowed.

The final exam will consist of two parts: first, your final speaking appointment; and second, a multiple choice bubble-sheet portion. The written portion of the exam is similar to a unit quiz and includes eighty-five multiple-choice questions on everything covered in this course. It is closed book, so you may not use any notes during the final. Also, on the final exam you may only listen to the audio track twice. However, you may (and it is recommended that you do) pause the track between each question to allow yourself time to process and think about what was said. The final exam will make up 25% of your final grade, 12.5% for speaking and 12.5% for the written portion. Notes will not be allowed during your final speaking appointment. If you use notes during the final speaking appointment, you will receive a 0 grade and fail the course.

You will be graded on each Unit Quizzes, Speaking Appointment, Writing Assignment, and on the final exam. This is how your final grade for the course will be divided:

7 Unit Quizzes

25%

7 Speaking Appointments

30%

7 Writing Assigments

20%

1 Final Exam and Final Speaking Appointment

25%

TOTAL

100%

The passing grade on assignments and the final is a D–. You must pass the final exam with a 60 percent or above to pass the course.

Scale

A

100–93

A–

92–90

B+

89–87

B

86–83

B–

82–80

C+

79–77

C

76–73

C–

72–70

D+

69–67

D

66–63

D–

62–60

E (fail)

59–0

The materials used in connection with this online course are only for the use of students enrolled in this course for purposes associated with this course and may not be retained or further disseminated. Any copying or further dissemination of these materials may be subject to applicable U.S. Copyright Laws. For questions or more information, please visit the BYU Copyright Licensing Office website.

“Members of the BYU community who willfully disregard this Copyright Policy or the BYU Copyright Guidelines place themselves individually at risk of legal action and may incur personal liability for their conduct. The unauthorized use or distribution of copyrighted material, including unauthorized peer-to-peer file sharing, may subject individuals to civil and criminal liabilities, including actual and statutory damages, costs and fees of litigation, fines, and imprisonment

Violations of the Copyright Policy may result in university disciplinary action including termination of university enrollment or employment.” (Emphasis added. Excerpt taken from the BYU Copyright Policy)

BYU is committed to providing a working and learning atmosphere which reasonably accommodates persons with disabilities who are otherwise qualified to participate in BYU's programs and activities. In this spirit, BYU Independent Study aspires to improve web accessibility for users. While not required by law, the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 Levels A and AA provide a wide range of helpful recommendations to make Web content more accessible. BYU Independent Study strives to apply WCAG 2.0 recommendations where feasible, but may deviate from any recommendations that would result in an undue hardship to BYU Independent Study or alterations to program and course content and objectives. If you have questions about accessibility, or if you need to report problems with any accessibility features please see our Accessibilities and Accommodations Web Page.

Copyright © 2014 Brigham Young University. All rights reserved.

Published by the

Department of Independent Study

Division of Continuing Education

Brigham Young University

120 MORC

Provo, Utah 84602-1514

USA

These policies are specific to this course. For additional information about general policies, please refer to Independent Study page.

Assignments

7 unit quizzes, and 7 writing assignments; may not be resubmitted. 7 speaking appointment assignments, may not be resubmitted, lowest score may be dropped for the speaking appointments.

Exams

1 final speaking appointment (may retake once for a fee; no-shows count as attempts and are given zeros), and 1 proctored, computer-graded final exam (may retake once for a fee). To pass the course, you must pass both the final speaking appointment and the final exam with at least a 60 percent on each.

Course Duration

Because of the nature of some assignments, you will not be able to complete this course in less than 2 months. You may only complete one speaking appointment per day. No exceptions. You have 1 year to complete this course, but if you need more than a year, you may purchase one 3-month extension.

Plagiarism Policy

Plagiarism is defined as the unauthorized use or close imitation of the language and thoughts of another author and the representation of them as one’s own original work. This may also include when a student copies and pastes directly from another source and passes it off as his or her own, copies computer-generated text from a translation tool and uses it as his or her own, or fails to cite a source after loosely summarizing its content in his or her own words. As determined by your instructor or the BYU Independent Study administration, if evidence of academic misconduct on assignments or exams is established, one of the two following consequences will apply to each incidence:

First Offense of Plagiarism

  1. You will fail the unit and be allowed the opportunity to resubmit the unit (or)
  2. You will fail the unit and be denied the opportunity to resubmit the unit

Second Offense of Plagiarism

  1. You will fail the unit and fail the class (or)
  2. You will fail the unit, fail the class, and may be ineligible to enroll in a specific course or any of our courses without going through an appeals process which will determine the severity of your plagiarism

University Policy - Title IX Statement

Preventing & Responding to Sexual Misconduct

In accordance with Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Brigham Young University prohibits unlawful sex discrimination against any participant in its education programs or activities. The university also prohibits sexual harassment—including sexual violence—committed by or against students, university employees, and visitors to campus. As outlined in university policy, sexual harassment, dating violence, domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking are considered forms of "Sexual Misconduct" prohibited by the university.

University policy requires all university employees in a teaching, managerial, or supervisory role to report all incidents of Sexual Misconduct that come to their attention in any way, including but not limited to face-to-face conversations, a written class assignment or paper, class discussion, email, text, or social media post. Incidents of Sexual Misconduct should be reported to the Title IX Coordinator at t9coordinator@byu.edu or (801) 422-8692. Reports may also be submitted through EthicsPoint at https://titleix.byu.edu/report or 1-888-238-1062 (24-hours a day).

BYU offers confidential resources for those affected by Sexual Misconduct, including the university’s Victim Advocate, as well as a number of non-confidential resources and services that may be helpful. Additional information about Title IX, the university’s Sexual Misconduct Policy, reporting requirements, and resources can be found at http://titleix.byu.edu or by contacting the university’s Title IX Coordinator.

Other Materials

You will need access to a printer and scanner to complete required handwritten assignments. Speaking appointments are required and use audio and video. You will need a headset or speakers, a microphone and a webcam. For optimal connection speeds during speaking appointments, it is recommended that you use a hard-wired, high-speed internet connection during the appointment. This course functions best in a web browser other than Internet Explorer. If you only have Internet Explorer, you can download other browsers (e.g., Firefox, Safari, etc.) for free online. If you have trouble playing audio files in Internet Explorer, you may wish to associate your audio (mp3) files with the Quicktime player. If you have trouble doing this, contact Technical Support at 1-877-897-8085 or istech@byu.edu.

     

    Participation Policy

    A little thought will convince you that consistency is key. No one grade on a quiz or assignment will hurt you or help you much, but your pattern of effort will add up. Consistently preparing well (practice makes permanent) will give you the skills you want, the skills that will enable you to use Arabic (and also do well on the final exam). Remember, learning a language happens by diligently and regularly working on it. Daily assignments are all constructed to help you stay focused, but they can be subverted and turned into busy work that results in minimal real learning. We hope you understand that the assignment sets, quizzes, and tests are there for a purpose: so that you can learn Arabic. You can defeat that purpose rather easily, so be careful.
    Language learning is an indirect, rather than a direct, result of the kinds of activities, drills, and online participation that you do. You will often not see a jump in your knowledge based on your having done a particular assignment. However, you must keep involved in the language for anything to happen at all. It is possible to turn any assignment (or a whole semester’s worth of them) into busy work. Please pay attention to why you are doing the drills, attend to the meaning of the sentences you are working with, and don’t ever allow yourself to do a drill just to “get it done.” 

    A Word about Assignment Keys

    Please use them as they are intended. Give your best effort to the assignments and then check them afterward, making corrections as needed. Where a key to an assignment is available, we expect you to make your own corrections. Please do them in a different color, so they will be easy to see. We strongly encourage you to keep all of your assignments and quizzes to use for later review—and to discipline yourself to pay close attention to feedback, whether written or oral. 

    Conversation Café and Speaking Appointments

    The Conversation Café is a virtual room where conversation practice and speaking appointments take place. Minimal English is used in the Café. Activities are moderated by a TA/instructor.


    Grading Note

    The chief cause of lower-than-expected final grades for this course (which means one hasn’t acquired the Arabic skills this course is designed to impart, the skills you want) is lack of diligence (missed homework and quizzes, not to mention the failure to review vocabulary regularly). The underlying cause, more often than not, turns out to be the tendency to bite off more than one can handle (work, school, social life). It takes time to learn Arabic. Count the cost of building the tower before you start and plan accordingly.

     

    Technical Considerations

    This course functions best in a web browser other than Internet Explorer. If you only have Internet Explorer, you can download other browsers (e.g., Firefox, Safari, etc.) for free online.

    Copyright Notice

    The materials used in connection with this online course are only for the use of students enrolled in this course for purposes associated with this course and may not be retained or further disseminated. Any copying or further dissemination of these materials may be subject to applicable U.S. Copyright Laws. For questions or more information, please visit the BYU Copyright Licensing Office website.

    “Members of the BYU community who willfully disregard this Copyright Policy or the BYU Copyright Guidelines place themselves individually at risk of legal action and may incur personal liability for their conduct. The unauthorized use or distribution of copyrighted material, including unauthorized peer-to-peer file sharing, may subject individuals to civil and criminal liabilities, including actual and statutory damages, costs and fees of litigation, fines, and imprisonment

    Violations of the Copyright Policy may result in university disciplinary action including termination of university enrollment or employment.” (Emphasis added. Excerpt taken from the BYU Copyright Policy)


    Copyright © 2016 Brigham Young University. All rights reserved.
    Published by the
    Department of Independent Study
    Division of Continuing Education
    Brigham Young University
    120 MORC
    Provo, Utah 84602-1514
    USA 

    Responsibility and Expectations

    The great thing about an Independent Study course is just that—it is independent. You can work at your own pace and learn by your own individual methods. However, with an Independent Study course, you are responsible to do your own work, meet deadlines, and stay on top of things. I recommend that you make yourself a schedule and stick to it so you don’t end up cramming everything to the end. Also, in order to really master a foreign language, it is crucial that you practice and apply the principles you learn. Therefore, I would recommend spending at least one hour every week in outside activities, such as watching French movies, listening to French music, or speaking to someone in French. If you put some effort and organization into it, this course should be informative, educational, applicable, and fun. 

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