TRKI exam is an official state testing system created in the 1990s to assess foreign students’ command of Russian. It was (and still is) mandatory for the international students who aim at being enrolled in Russian universities. The TBU/TEU/TRKI certificates are also widely recognised by major Russian employers and will enhance your CV should you be pursuing a career in Russia. The six levels (ТЭУ, ТБУ, ТРКИ-1, ТРКИ-2, ТРКИ-3, ТРКИ-4) correspond to CEFR. The language skills are tested in all aspects, e.g. Grammar and Vocabulary, Speaking, Listening, Reading, and Writing. TRKI exams are challenging and tend to be more academic than communicative thus it requires a specific preparation.
We recommend to take at least 10 individual lessons to prepare for any TRKI exam on top of our standard group classes or other general Russian course. The preparation course includes going over the mock exam with your tutor, eliciting the strong and weak points and targeting the latter. Statistically, the most challenging part of the exam is writing. There are techniques and methods to adjust the student’s language skills to the exam requirements and make a student aware of the exam structure, procedure, and other pragmatic issues.
My experience of studying Russian at Liden & Denz was very successful. 11 months ago, I didn’t know anything in Russian except for “здравствуйте ”, but I finally got TRKI 3. I took TRKI to track my progress in Russian and get a confirmation of my current level. The exam helped me stay motivated for a constant effort.
As for the exam preparation at Liden & Denz, I think that without my teacher Liza I wouldn’t have passed even the second level. The lessons very structured and efficient. I’m very happy with the result I’ve got!
My motivation to take TRKI-2 was to test myself and see if I could manage to pass it. I think that, even though I’ve attend only 5 hours of private class, teachers at Liden & Denz can help students to prepare for any kind of exam and that’s what they did with me, perfecting every aspect of my written and spoken Russian. All that is what made me able to get really high marks in the TRKI-2 test.
TEU is an exam testing the most elementary knowledge of Russian, corresponding to A1 according to CEFR. At Liden & Denz you are equipped to pass it after 80-100 hours of group lessons in a standard group. In terms of speaking, you should be able to react to a direct question, make a simple description/presentation, speak on a familiar topic (daily routine, family, travelling) using simple phrases and sentences. In regards to listening you should be able to recognise and understand very basic information (shopping, employment, local area, security announcements). You should be also able to write a simple personal informal letter/message and read a short text and find a specific information in ads, menus, and timetables.
TBU is a test of basic Russian language skills. It corresponds to CEFR A2 level: you should be able to communicate in direct exchange of information on familiar topics; understand a clearly and slowly articulated speech; write about daily aspects of your environment (people, places, job experience) in linked sentences; be able to understand short texts containing the highest frequency vocabulary.
TRKI-1 is the most popular exam, providing both an evidence of achievement and an encouraging stimulus for further studies. It corresponds to CEFR B1 and is required by a number of Russian universities and other educational institutions. You should be able to develop an argument and deal with most of the situations that may arise while travelling/residing in Russia; understand the main points of a discussion on topics of personal or professional interest; write straightforward and detailed descriptions; read texts on subjects of personal interest with a satisfactory level of comprehension.
TRKI-2 corresponds to CEFR B2 and expects advance language skills and a vocabulary of circa 5000 words.
TRKI-3 and TRKI-4 mostly test competences necessary for an academic research/teaching Russian as a Foreign language/teaching Russian to bilingual students/employment as faculty members in Russian educational institutions. They correspond to CEFR C1/C2 and the requirements are of a highly academic and demanding nature. This said, not every native speaker is able to pass those tests without a thorough preparation.