University PetrSU was founded in 1940 as the Finnish-Karelian University and gained its present name in 1956. Throughout its 75-year history PetrSU has become the largest university in the North-European part of Russia and trained more than 60000 students. It successfully combines traditions of classical education and fundamental science with innovative decisions in the fields of high-tech scientific development.
PetrSU has several notable alumni, including eminent politicians and poets. It is regularly placed among the best universities of Russia according to different rankings (GreenMetric World University Ranking – 2nd place among 100 best universities in Russia; «Interfax» and «Ekho Moskvi» independent national rating in the internalization category – 3rd place, etc.)

ABOUT PETRSU (A PDF version 2017)


The university occupies 8 buildings throughout the city and operates a botanic garden, a swimming pool «Onego», several laboratories and a publishing house. Its library holds a total of around 1.4 million books. PetrSU is located in Petrozavodsk, but it also has a branch in Apatity, the city in the Murmansk region.
Today more than 14800 students attend classes in various undergraduate, graduate and post-graduate programs. They are taught by over a thousand professors, including 550 PhDs, 145 Doctors of Science, 26 members of state academies of science.
The university is made up of 80 departments, 9 faculties, 7 educational institutes and 8 research institutes.



The university plays an active role in making higher education more accessible to the people living in outland districts of Karelia and nearby states. Every district is assigned to a faculty or institute and students from small towns or villages can apply for an employer-sponsored education. Students from Petrozavodsk schools, lyceums and gymnasiums can attend pre-university training specific to their future field of studies.
PetrSU takes part in organizing and conducting the Unified State Exam (USE), which has been the main form of graduation examinations in schools and the main form of preliminary examinations in universities in Russia for the past 10 years. The university houses Regional USE Center, which processes examination results and provides online counselling for teachers and students.
PetrSU is a recognized research center in the fields of programming, IT, plasma research, microelectronics, mathematics, physics, medical science, biology, history, philology, political and social sciences, law, economics, construction, forestry, agriculture. More than 60 regional, national and international conferences are held annually, over 300 state and private-funded projects in the fields of science and education are carried out, and dozens of monographies, textbooks and handbooks are published.


Over the years PetrSU has been very active on the international arena. Today more than 200 international students from the USA, Europe, China and other countries study at the university, and 10 professors from different countries teach at PetrSU.
There are 6 master’s programs in the English language launched in 2015: «Network Services and Systems», «Comparative Social Policy and Welfare», «Public Health», «Tourism Management», «Nordic Studies: Language, Culture and History» and «Spintonics». Undergraduate students can opt for a bachelor’s or specialist’s degree.
The university has 87 active international agreements with 27 countries (Finland, Sweden, Norway, France, Germany, Portugal, United Kingdom, United States of America, Canada, Belgium, Korea, countries of the Baltic region, etc.) and international exchange programs are launched with 20 foreign universities. 30 international projects are held annually with the financial support of various international funds, programs and organizations (EU, EBRD, USAID, CRDF, IREX, DAAD, CIMO).
PetrSU International units include Institute of International Programs, EU Center in Barents Region in Russia, International Summer University, International Programming Specialist Training Center, PetrSU Metso Center, PetrSU Nokia Center and PetrSU Ponsse Center. Institute of international programs houses Atlantic and Asia Cooperation Center, the European Union Information Center and International Education Center.
The university cooperates with UNESCO, University of the Arctic, Joint Working Group on Education and Research of the Barents Euro-Arctic Region, National Board on Education in Finland, International Association of Finno-Ugric Universities, Association of Open Innovations FRUCT, Barents Peace Education Network.

Three Language Centers at the university provide an opportunity to pass the following language tests:

TORFL (Test of Russian as the Foreign Language)

TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language)

TOLES (Test of Legal English Skills)


International students have several accommodation options to choose from, among which are flats for rent, hotel/hostel rooms or living in a host family. The most popular option though is the student dormitory. PetrSU has 10 dormitory buildings scattered throughout the city. The university doesn’t have a main campus, but is easy to reach from every dormitory via public transport. All buildings have internet access, lounges and study halls, gyms. They are also equipped with washing machines and stoves.


As well as being successful in the academic field, the university is famous for its prolific cultural activity. World renowned choirs, student theatres, ethnic and contemporary dancing groups and various crafts activities are open to all interested. Among the most successful are the Academic Male Choir, listed as one of the best male choirs in the world, Academic Mixed Choir, famous in many countries and the winner of prestigious contests in Russia and Europe, folk music group «Toive» and drama clubs «TIS» and «BEST».

Last updated: 20.04.2017