Slavic Languages and Literatures Graduate Program

The department supports doctoral study in the literatures and cultures of the Slavic, East European, and Eurasian worlds, with primary strength in Russian and faculty expertise in Ukrainian, Polish, and Yiddish literatures. Core faculty in Slavic offer a broad geographic, linguistic and intellectual range of approaches to culture, including formal, historical, and philosophical approaches in literature, history and memory studies, digital techniques, and linguistic anthropology. For detailed information on the areas of research of the Slavic faculty, see Faculty.

Our students gain a broad expertise in the Russian canon even as they are required to take at least three courses in another field or discipline; some choose to complete a Ph.D. minor in at least another department or program. The department is part of the Division of Literatures, Cultures, and Languages, and our students may undertake cross-disciplinary work within the division through team-taught seminars, focal groups, research groups, lecture series, graduate conferences, and other opportunities for intellectual exchange with peers in cognate departments. In addition to Russian and one quarter of Old Church Slavonic, Ph.D. students in Slavic are required to learn to read at least two other languages: while they often choose french, German, or another Slavic language, they can make other choices depending on their research interests. To explore the languages offered at Stanford, see the Language Center.

Department benefits from experts in the Department of History, Art and Art History, Religious Studies, Theater and Performance Studies, Linguistics, Music, Political Science, and the Freeman Spogli Institute. Together with us, these faculty and their students constitute a very large and diverse community of scholars. The department maintains close links to the Center for Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies, which is a venue for lectures that complement the department's offerings; it hosts annual cohorts of M.A. students as well as research fellows. The department enjoys the wealth of the Stanford library system, with its dedicated Slavic curator. It also benefits from the proximity of the Hoover archive, with its world-renowned collections of Russian and Eurasian materials, which some of our students choose to use. 

The Division in general and Slavic in particular are known for their innovative approach to the cultural disciplines, personalized guidance of graduate students, and insistence on the highest intellectual standards. Stanford has been repeatedly voted the top university in the world in the humanities. Slavic offers various opportunities for collaboration between graduate students and faculty, including the co-organization of workshops, conferences, and team teaching. Graduate students have ample opportunity to present their work and are encouraged to prepare their best essays for publication and given ample help to do so. 

Graduate students in Slavic receive professional training in second language pedagogy, and they have the opportunity to teach for at least five quarters, including literature as well as language teaching. Language instruction takes place in the Stanford Language Center. Further training in teaching literature and culture is available in the department by working with faculty either as a teaching assistant or co-instructor. Our Ph.D.s graduate with an unusual combination of skills and cultural breadth, qualifying them to compete for a range of academic and non-academic positions. Our Ph.D.s have been successful in obtaining positions in research universities and small liberal arts colleges, as well as at research institutions, in academic administration, government, the technology sector, and other professional venues. 

Graduate students may also take advantage of the resources available in Stanford's Center for Teaching and Learning, where highly qualified staff provides support and training in public speaking and presentations, dissertation writing, effective teaching, and other professional skills. 

For more detailed information on our program, please see the corresponding pages in the Stanford Bulletin:


Graduate Program Application Details

Profile Photo - Yuliya Ilchuk

Yuliya Ilchuk
Director of Slavic Languages and Literatures
Pigott Hall, Bldg 260
yilchuk [at] (yilchuk[at]stanford[dot]edu)

John Giammalva - Profile Photo

John Giammalva
In Memoriam, Student Services Manager
Pigott Hall, Bldg 260, Rm 127
(650) 279-3630
dlclstudentservices [at] (dlclstudentservices[at]stanford[dot]edu)