University of Sheffield is first to introduce Ukrainian language courses

The University of Sheffield is the ‘first of its kind’ to introduce Ukrainian language courses that are open to students and members of the public.

A six-week beginners’ course will start this month and be open to people seeking to learn the Ukrainian language, without any prior experience.

Professor Neil Bermel, Professor of Russian and Slavonic Studies at the university, said: “We know that people across the UK are helping Ukrainians who are fleeing the war in their home country, and some might like some help with the language to make everyday communication that bit easier.”

The language conversion course in Ukrainian is for those who speak or are familiar with Russian or any other Slavonic languages.

Since February 2022 more than 1,000 Ukrainians have been granted refugee status in Sheffield and 160,000 in the UK. Families in the UK who have housed Ukrainian refugees are welcome to the course to learn the language to help with the communication barrier.

The scheme will be supporting students, scholars and other staff who are looking for sanctuary in the UK or have been affected by the war in their countries.

The courses will be taught by Ukrainian academics who are being hosted by Sheffield for the University of Sanctuary. The university launched a scheme for academics to continue their research in Sheffield if they have been affected by conflict in their home country.

This scheme has provided funding for multiple researchers so they can continue their work in a safe environment.

Eleanor Bradley, 18, a language student at the University of Sheffield said: “Learning a language allows people to learn more about the culture behind these countries and more of an understanding of Ukraine.

“While we’re having refugees in Sheffield it is much more beneficial for the community to have access to the language to break the barrier.”

Both programmes will be open to existing students who want to take on the Ukrainian language. It could also help provide the UK with experts in languages and more academics for universities and schools.   

The course will start on 6 March to 10 May.

Written by Alex Bolton

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