Russian Studies Materials is an extensive site presenting Russian grammar with live morphology and interactive testing. The site provides grammatical material for every part of speech and some links to the useful sources. Some basic information such as Russian alphabet, rules of pronunciation and spelling is also provided
Target Student Population:
Students with basic, intermediate, or advanced proficiency in Russian will find this site a valuable source of information about Russian grammar.
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills:
The site provides an alphabet, a basic grammar, pronunciation rules, rules of verbal, nominal, adjectival morphology and syntax of the Russian language. Theoretically, no prerequisite knowledge is needed to use this site. However, some material is written entirely in Russian.
Type of Material:
Colored text, tables, grammatical exercises.
The site is intended to be used by beginners, but due to the nature of its content the site can be an excellent resource for intermediate and advanced students of Russian and for instructors as well.
In order to read Russian text, one needs KOI8-R or Cyrillic (Windows) fonts on the computer and the browser. In order to write out the exercises in the reference grammar, one needs to install a Cyrillic keyboard and configure his browser for KOI8-R document encoding. Some exercises require a Liquid Motion player to see the excerpts from the movies. The Liquid Motion player can be automatically downloaded.
Evaluation and Observation
This site is well organized, meets its stated goals, and provides an adequate amount of material. The content is currently divided into 8 parts that are further subdivided into various categories. Those 8 parts are Preliminaries, 6 Russian parts of speech (verb, noun, adjective, pronoun, preposition, and conjunction), and Language Learning Support. The information presented on Russian parts of speech is concise yet to the point. The Russian grammar is presented in different colorful tables, which helps learners to visualize the material. The interesting part of the site is the Alphabet chapter. It provides Russian words, written in Russian font that sound very similar to the English words of the same meaning. The author of the site challenges the reader to read two columns of such words and figure out Russian sounds. For those who are not able to do this, the author provides links to traditional explanations of the Russian Alphabet.
Some exercises do not seem to be connected much with Russian culture.
Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool
The site offers a highly effective grammatical framework for teaching and learning. Both students and faculty can benefit from the information presented there. It can be used for student independent study although not for the basic level. The material can also be printed out and used in class.
More exercises would certainly increase the possibility of learners internalizing the material.
Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty
The site is easy to navigate. All the labels, buttons, menus, and texts are consistent and distinct. Every subpage provides a back button and home page button, which makes it impossible to get lost in the site. The site provides extensive information about the system?s status and keyboard/font requirements and how to obtain them.
There are some dead links that need to be updated. Even with Liquid Motion installed, some animations do not work