March 9, 2011

MA in East European Studies at Warsaw University

The Centre for East European Studies announces its 11th annual competition for 25 scholarships for the two-year supplementary master’s programme in East European Studies at Warsaw University, lasting from 1 October 2011 to 30 June 2013. 

The Centre for East European Studies was established under the resolution of the Warsaw University Senate in 1990 as part of the Institute of Oriental Studies. The competition and the opportunity to study the subject in Poland were received with great interest in target countries. Opening such possibility is considered both a proof and an example of Poland’s involvement in shaping the future of the region.
Over 800 candidates from 19 countries have applied for the scholarship in the previous eight editions of the competition. The arduous enrolment procedure (3 stages: application, written test, interview) led to admitting, between 2001 and 2008, almost 190 individuals to the scholarship programme. They came from Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Georgia, Hungary, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Mongolia, Slovakia, Russia, Ukraine and Uzbekistan.
The state-funded East European Studies Scholarships were established with the intention not only to create a group of well-trained experts on Eastern affairs at home, but also to provide educational opportunities for young specialists from other, especially neighbouring countries, thus offering a rare chance for Poles and their foreign fellow students to study, here in Warsaw, the past, the present and the future of our region together.
Eligible Candidates

1.CANDIDATES may come from any of the countries of Central Europe, Balkans, Eastern Europe, Russia, Caucasus and Central Asia.
2. PREFERENCE will be given to candidates being able to prove their academic achievements or organizational activity and whose accomplishments would allow them to put advanced study in this specialization to good use in their own countries in various fields of academicor public life.
3. UNIVERSITY DIPLOMA, preferably in the humanities; research work or organizational and practical experience in the fields of interest of the East European Studies are desirable.
4. AGE LIMIT: 30 (exceptions might be made in absolutely special cases only!).
5. GOOD background in the general issues concerning Eastern Europe, Central Europe, Russia, Central Asia and the Caucasus, particularly in the 19th and 20th century and contemporary affairs, and especially the periods of 1980s and after 1991.
6. PASSING GRADE in the written examination on general knowledge (subject matter as in point 3 above) and in the qualifying interview.
7. KNOWLEDGE of the Polish and English languages at a level guaranteeing that the student is able to understand the lectures and do the required reading – is essential.


1. THE PROGRAMME lasts 2 years (4 semesters), of which the scholarship covers 9 months in a year. There is also a possibility of prolonging the scholarship for max. 1 month in the 2nd year of studies for finishing one’s thesis. Scholarship holder can apply for such prolonging by a letter of intention with explanation of one’s motivation.
2. THE PROGRAMME of the studies encompasses East and Central European, Russian and
the entire post-communist area’s history and contemporary affairs. It focuses on history,
ethnicity and political science, but also includes elements of art history, literature, culture, sociology, geography demography, law and economics. The programme also includes study of at least one of the region’s languages.
3. THE PROGRAMME has six basic majors:
a) Eastern Europe (East-Central),
b) Russia
c) Caucasus
d) Central Asia
e) Central Europe
f) the Balkans
4. COURSES WITHIN THE FRAMEWORK of the East European Studies Programme are
taught by Polish lecturers (the team of the Centre for East European Studies) and by a large group of guest faculty members, both Polish and foreign, including a US professor as part of the University of Warsaw-Fulbright Distinguished Chair in East European Studies.
a) Fees normally charged for foreign students who study at the University of Warsaw (approx. € 5,000/year)
b) Scholarship for foreign scholarship holders being graduates of foreign institutions
of higher education (1270 PLN/month).
c) Intensive Polish language course (during the 1st year of studies).
d) Course in one of the region’s languages (for the two years of the programme)
e) Purchase of basic study materials and literature those necessary for the programme.
f) Payment for a research tour in Poland (in the 1st semester of studies).
6. CONDITIONS: scholarship holders must meet all the programme and scholarship requirements and prepare a final written thesis, to be submitted in Polish, at the conclusion of the programme.
7. IF these conditions are not satisfied or if the academic progress during the programme is insufficient, the scholarship may be withdrawn. The details of the scholarship conditions are stated in an agreement individually signed with each student.

Application Documents

2. THOROUGHLY FILLED IN APPLICATION FORM of East European Studies Programme candidate
3. CONCISE (in Polish, up to 2 pages maximum) letter of motivation in application for the Scholarship, outlining the student’s future plans connected with the graduation from the East European Studies programme at the University of Warsaw. The student should also indicate which major he or she intends to choose (according to the list of majors provided in item II-3).
4. CURRICULUM VITAE written in English, sorted in the reverse chronological order (i.e. the most recent events are listed first); please include 1 photograph.
5. LIST of all academic publications – for candidates who are already working in their field; others should include a list of their most significant academic written work, jobs, accomplishments or projects.
6. DOCUMENTS, such as certificates, examination results, letters of recommendation, etc., which certify the candidate’s knowledge of the Polish language.
7. RECOMMENDATIONS from at least one faculty member or academic researcher, or from a person practically involved in the activity covered by the East European Studies.
8. OTHER information, documents or details that the candidate believes might assist the commission in evaluating his or her application.

Application Procedure

1. THE COMPLETE SET of documents should be submitted by post by 15 March 2011 at the latest.
2. RECOMMENDATIONS should be submitted or sent by persons who give the recommendations – not by the candidates themselves!
3. BY 31 March 2011, the special Admissions Committee of the East European Studies Programme will decide on the results of the 1st phase of the competition and select applicants for the 2nd and 3rd phases; both groups will be immediately informed of the results by e-mail and post.
4. PARTICIPANTS in the 2nd (written examination) and 3rd (qualifying interview) phases are to meet any and all further qualification requirements in the presence of members of the Committee or its appointed representatives between 15 April and 31 May 2011 The qualifying interviews and examinations will take place both at Polish diplomatic posts abroad and in Poland. Detailed schedule will be announced.
5. THE FINAL decisions based on the qualification results will be taken by the Admissions
Committee by 15 June 2011 and the list of winners of the 11th Competition for East European Studies Scholarships will be announced. All Scholarship holders will be informed via e-mail and post.
6.CANDIDATES with weaker knowledge of Polish language, yet with favorable scientific
exam results – will be obligated to learn the language on their own. At the end of July they will undergo a further Polish language exams process. Those with the best results will have a chance for additional Polish language course in September.

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