International Programs
MGIMO University

and Academic

Information for Applicants 


Tuition fee: 620 000 RUR (8 200 EUR for non-residents) per academic year. Russian VAT not applicable. Possible bank commissions or other surcharges of third parties are not included.

  • Deadline for application: July 15th, 2017.

  • Eligible applicants will be invited to video interviews by email if necessary.

  • Admission results publication: August 2017.

Age requirements: admission to MGIMO-University is based upon academic merit and potential. Since MGIMO bears a responsibility for safeguarding children under Russian laws, appropriate senior staff will be notified of an offer of admission made to anyone who will be younger than 18 years of age at the time of registration as MGIMO student.



Please mind and follow these 10 rules:

  1. Contact us ONLY using this e-mail address:

  2. In the topic field please indicate the word ‘Application’, candidate surname and the chosen program.

  3. Indicate how we can address you in your message (name, surname). In case you represent the interests of an applicant (your relative, friend, etc.), please explain it as clear as possible.

  4. The attached text files must be in .doc or .pdf format.

  5. The attached scans and/or pictures must be in .pdf or .jpg format.

  6. For ease of assessment, we request that you name each attached file (for example: diploma, CV, transcript, etc.).

  7. As far as is possible, do not send any documents by post and never send us original documents as we are unable to return them to you.

  8. Please be informed that the processing of the requested documents usually takes between 5 to 15 business days. We will get back to you shortly with any updates regarding the status of your application form.

  9. Do not wait until the very last day to submit your application. As soon as your application is ready, submit it.

  10. To be eligible for assessment, your application must be submitted before the deadline. Once you have submitted your application, it is not possible to modify it. Nevertheless, you may send the remaining documents after submission, but be sure to do this before the deadline anyway. If the application is not complete and/or submitted after the deadline, we will be unable to process it.

Your application should be supported with the following documents:

  • High school diploma and/or leaving examination certificate(s), if you already have received it. If not, you will need to send it to us as soon as you receive it from your school.
    ATTENTION: once admitted, you will have to present the originals of these documents during the academic registration and undergo the procedures of (1) notarial certification of translation of the documents into Russian language and (2) nostrification, or approval of your documents by the Ministry of Education and Science of the Russian Federation. MGIMO-University will provide all the necessary assistance to pass these procedures smoothly. Please note that the nostrification procedure is not necessary for citizens of countries which have signed treaties on recognition and equivalence of diplomas with the Russian Federation (please click here to download the list of these countries), though additional conditions may be in force based on a particular treaty.

  • Photo of an applicant (at least 300 dpi; by e-mail).
    ATTENTION: eight printed photos 3x4 cm (matte with white background only; black & white or color) must be submitted upon your admission and arrival at our campus.

  • CV/Résumé (free-form).

  • Motivation letter (personal statement), up to 1000 words.

  • Academic and/or professional references (at least two). Please do not collect references yourself. Provide us with e-mail addresses and other contact information of your referees so that we could request their references. Also ask your referees to prepare reference letters so that we could collect them.

  • English language test certificate (International English Language Testing Service (IELTS) academic test with a total score of 6.0 and 5.5 in each of the components; and/or Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) with a minimum score of 80 and 20 in each of the four skills).

  • Photocopy of your ID: passport or ID card.

  • Electronic application form


Some important notes

  1. All e-mails related to your application to MGIMO-University will be sent from the following address:

    Please add this address to your e-mail address book (if possible, ask your referee to do the same) to avoid our e-mails being sent to your spam e-mail folder.

  2. The professional referees you indicate will be contacted within 10 business days after you have submitted your application.

  3. Reference letters can be written in English, French or Russian.

Why does MGIMO need my motivation letter?

We ask applicants to submit a motivation letter because of a high level of competition for admission to MGIMO and to the School of Government and International Affairs. Thus, the quality of your motivation letter is a major part of our admissions criteria.

When we consider your application, we will make our admission decision not only on the basis of your academic or professional qualifications. We also study any other information that shows whether you have achieved the level of knowledge, including command of English, as well as motivation necessary to complete the course.

It is crucial that you submit a thoroughly-prepared letter which can really capture our attention. MGIMO looks for well-rounded individuals, with the ability and motivation to complete their chosen course, and derive benefit from it.

How to write an exceptional motivation letter?

The motivation letter must be written in English. It should reflect your personal writing style. Your motivation letter should indicate the nature and extent of your interest in the area and subjects you wish to study.

In a maximum of 1000 words, try to answer the following questions: why have you chosen MGIMO and this course? What circumstances, events or facts in your life caused you to take this choice? Why this course is important to you? Why you will benefit from studying here at MGIMO? How this choice of university and course fits into your future career and life plans? What will you be able to contribute to the student community and societies?

It is desirable that you demonstrate your interest for the chosen course by linking it to your own experiences. These might be summer jobs, extracurricular activities, books, travel, personal links, employment, internships, etc. At the same time, don’t simply repeat the activities that appear elsewhere in your application. In your letter you need to demonstrate how they support your choice and what use they will be to you. For example, you might like to mention that a summer job taught you how to work as part of a team, or that an internship boosted your confidence to speak in public. We are also interested in your views and opinions on current and public affairs. Work experience is not essential, though taken into account, especially where it has engaged your mind and has developed your character or social skills.

At the same time, please remember that the majority of your motivation letter should be based around your subject interest and motivation.

While the letter should be a true reflection of you, for more confidence you might like a friend or relative to read it through. Friends or relatives shouldn’t, however, be involved in the writing process. You must write your motivation letter yourself.

Here are some more essential rules that we strongly advise you to follow when preparing your motivation letter:

  • Do organize your letter, so that it is well-structured and coherent.

  • Do link your current and future studies and activities.

  • Do expect to produce several drafts before being totally confident and happy.

  • Do use your best English and don’t let spelling and grammatical errors spoil your letter.

  • Do be enthusiastic — if you show your interest in the course, it may help you get a place.

  • Do use maximum space available. The limit for motivation letters is 1000 words and we expect you to fully utilize this space to show your interest in the program you have applied to.

  • Don’t start every sentence with 'I'.

  • Don’t fill the space with irrelevant information.

  • Don’t write in either text language, jargon, or too much complex language.

  • Don’t use quotations. We are interested exactly in what you think, not what somebody else thinks.

  • Don’t rely on a spellchecker as it will not fix everything. Proof read as many times as possible.

  • Don’t expect to be able to write your motivation letter while watching TV or surfing the Internet — remember that this is your future.

  • And, finally, never lie in your motivation letter. We want to see the real you

What does MGIMO look for in my motivation letter?

Your motivation letter plays a key role in the application process. The Admissions Team looks for an original and well-written letter which provides evidence of your genuine interest in the international community and its institutions, government and governance, politics and policies, strategies and tactics of political and business interaction.

In your motivation letter MGIMO Admissions Team will be looking for answers to the following questions: why do you wish to pursue a degree in the multi-disciplinary field of government and international affairs? Whether there are any elements or aspects of the course which are of specific interest to you? How the course relates to your current studies? What additional reading or other activities you have undertaken which have led you to apply for this B.A. program at MGIMO?

In its applicants MGIMO values certain qualities and personal characteristics which will be extremely helpful during the studies: the ability to read extensively, communicate effectively, demonstrate creativity, flexibility and initiative, work independently, intellectual curiosity, motivation and capacity for hard work.

How to choose a referee?

References which support your application are very important to us; thus, you should take special care when choosing your referees. Do not stop on someone only because of his/her title or position. Choose someone who knows you well and who can evaluate your skills and personal qualities.

It is important that your referees have assessed your work (in particular, written work) and that they are able to be both impartial and precise. Please note that your referees should not be personal contacts, but rather teachers or hierarchical superiors.

If your referees are teachers, choose those who have taught the main disciplines you have studied and/or disciplines that are similar to those taught at the chosen B.A. program at MGIMO. Do not choose language teachers, as indications of your language level are provided in other documents of your application.

Make sure that the persons you choose will give a positive reference: take time to meet them in order to explain your motivation and the reasons for your choice. Take this opportunity to remind them of the strong elements of your personality or of your experience that you would like them to bring out in the reference letter. Don’t forget to mention your communication, leadership and other precious qualities as well.

ATTENTION: Candidates are not permitted to access their reference letters. They are strictly confidential and will only be read by those people responsible for assessing your application at MGIMO.


Some advice for referees

Here come questions that referees are most welcome to answer in their reference letters:

1. How do you know the applicant? How long have you known them for?
2. What would you say are the applicant's key strengths and talents?
3. What would you say are the applicant's key weaknesses or areas for improvement?
4. In which areas of development has the applicant progressed most in the time you've known them?
5. If you are a professional referee, would you work with the applicant again post-BA in Government and International Affairs? If you are an academic referee, what will be the applicant’s main contributions to the BA in Government and International Affairs program?



If you require a visa to enter Russia, we advise you to begin to apply for it as soon as you receive our admission confirmation. Admitted students obtain Russian visa through simplified procedure.

Information on diplomatic and consular missions of the Russian Federation can be found here. Information on visa requirements can be usually found on the websites of the embassies and consulates of the Russian Federation around the world.

The MGIMO School of Government and International Affairs can provide the necessary advice and assistance upon your request.