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Regular version of the site

Open House

Where teachers, principals, and education researchers learn

About the Open House Project

Lecture halls, corridors, the student cafeteria, etc., will all eventually become a ‘home away from home’ for prospective HSE students. We cordially invite you to a virtual tour of HSE. Current HSE students show you around campus through our website.

Portrait galleries of renowned scientists, research laboratories right next to large classrooms and auditoriums, educational programmes for students and principals – these are just a few of the things discussed during an excursion around the HSE Institute of Education as part of the Open House project. Victoria Malova, a second-year student in the Evidence-Based Education Policy master’s programme, and Denis Federiakin, a second-year student in the Measurement in Psychology and Education master’s programme, served as the tour guides for the day.

Address: 16 Potapovsky Pereulok, Building 10

How to get there: A 10-15 minute walk from the subway stations Kitai Gorod, Chistiye Prudy, Sretensky Bulvar, or Turgenevskaya

The HSE Institute of Education, in its present form, was established in 2012, but its separate divisions have been researching schools, universities, and education policy as a whole for 15 years. University faculty note that their mission is to modernise the Russian education system through advanced research and development, and they also aim to prepare some of today’s best school administrators and researchers. The institute’s various programmes of study are aimed at recent graduates, as well as current teachers and administrators.

The Building

Located on Potapovsky Pereulok, the four-storey building that houses the institute was built in 1937 on a pond that was part of an area previously owned by the Sverchkov-Abrikosov merchants. For a long time the building was home to School No. 312 before becoming the location of the HSE Lyceum and the Institute of Education in 2014.

‘We have a lot of respect for this building’s history, which is why the first-floor hall has its own sort of memorial wall with the school’s sign,’ Victoria Malova notes. ‘On the wall there are photographs, journal entries, notebook extracts, and reviews by former students of the school and their parents.’

There are classrooms and auditoriums on each floor, but the majority of them are on the second floor, which is also where the Lyceum students study. Several auditoriums are named after outstanding Russian pedagogues and education researchers of the 20th century. One computer classroom, for example, is named in honour of the couple Evgeny Kniazev and Natalya Drantusova, both HSE Institute of Education faculty members who died in a tragic plane crash in Kazan on November 17, 2013. Evgeny Knyazev created and became the head of the institute’s Centre for University Management in 2011. He was also one of the first Russian researchers to write about universities’ independent strategies and about how the university is not part of a machine for producing workers, but an independent player on the intellectual and socioeconomic field.

In addition, the institute has a conference hall named after Eduard Dneprov, Russia’s first elected Minister of Education and the author of the Russian law ‘On Education,’ which was passed in 1992 and subsequently called ‘the most democratic law on education seen in the late 20th century’ by UNESCO. Dneprov was a leading researcher in the Institute of Education and a member of the editorial board for the journal Educational Studies. A special scholarship, the Edward Dneprov Scholarship, was created in his honour for HSE undergraduate and graduate students.

The institute has a courtyard you can go to if you want to shoot some hoops or play a game of tennis

The fourth floor has a library and meeting room named after Anatoly Pinsky, who is a renowned Russian educator and advisor to the Russian Minister of Education. Pinsky started, and for a long time headed, the Institute of Education’s Centre for the Socio-Economic Development of Schools, and he was one of the creators of the Educational Studies journal and the Monitoring Economics of Education project. The institute and journal have subsequently set up the Pinsky Grant for the best analytical works in the field of education.

All of the auditoriums are of a common stylistic design with a quote and portrait of the person after which the auditoriums are named. ‘And our stairwells have common phrases and quotes in Latin as well, including a Latin saying that everyone from HSE knows, “Non scholae, sed vitae discimus,”’ notes Victoria Malova.

Four storeys of the HSE Institute of Education building have another unique design feature called Lifeline. This consists of a portrait gallery of famous pedagogues at various stages of their lives – childhood, youth, adulthood, and old age. The idea is for visitors of the building to get a chronological snapshot of the person’s life as they ascend from the first to the fourth floors. The project features Vasily Davydov, John Dewey, Oleg Gazman, Anton Makarenko, and Maria Montessori.

There are special zones in the building’s corridors with couches and ottomans, and the corridors also have tables perfect for studying or holding smaller group meetings. It is also important to note that our colleagues from the HSE School of Design participated in the building’s interior design. ‘There’s a printer next to the classroom auditorium so that students can always quickly print out any documents they might need,’ Victoria says. ‘In addition, there are bookshelves there, which is good because book-crossing has been quite popular lately. For lunch, students can go to the ‘Travel’ cafeteria on the first floor, where they can also relax on the comfy couches. Music is always playing there, which lightens the mood, and as the name might suggest, there are different sized maps of countries and cities, and even a star chart. The institute also has a courtyard you can go to if you want to shoot some hoops or play a game of tennis. The basketball court was put in recently as a birthday present for two of our instructors, Dmitry Semyonov and Igor Chirikov,’ Victoria continues.


‘This is also where the Institute of Education’s various academic centres and laboratories are, and a large number of students work in them during the school year,’ Victoria notes. ‘It’s really convenient when your school and your job are in the same building, meaning you don’t have to spend time commuting. The main advantage, however, is of course the experience that we are all getting here. Upon finishing your master’s, you have a choice – find a job (you can find our graduates at school and universities, HR departments at large private companies, and at consulting firms) or go on to get your PhD. You can become part of the post-graduate reserve programme your very first year.’

The institute’s research divisions now cover all stages of a person’s education. For example, the Centre for Modern Childhood Studies, which is headed by Katerina Polivanova, researches and analyses childhood development from preschool through high school. Additionally, the main areas of focus at the Centre for the Socio-Economic Development of Schools, whose director is Sergey Kosaretsky, include developing regional development programmes for primary and secondary education, studying support programmes for schools operating under difficult social conditions, monitoring information transparency within school administration, and much more.

The Centre for Developing Leadership in Education is the first job I’ve had where I stay late after work simply because the job is interesting

Headed by Dmitry Semyonov, the University Development Laboratory focuses on applied research and development on national systems of higher education, regional and industry-based universities, and finally the development of individual universities. One of the laboratory’s current projects involves an analysis on the structure of the national higher education systems in 15 post-Soviet states. Lastly, the Centre of the Sociology of Higher Education, which is headed by Igor Chirikov, studies the social and organisational characteristics of higher education systems.

‘At the start of the academic year, the leaders of all of these divisions talk to students about the work that they do,’ Victoria says. ‘Master’s students are able to decide their very first year which centre they would like to work in, but our instructors are obviously the ones with the final say. They are also the ones reviewing resumes and conducting interviews. Take me for example – I was the only one from our group to get to work for Anatoly Kasprzhak in the Centre for Developing Leadership in Education. We study and promote the most effective Russian and foreign practices in the field of education, and we also design educational programmes of varying levels and areas of focus,’ she concludes.

‘I chose the Centre for Education Quality Monitoring, which is headed by Elena Kardanova. I like solving complex scientific problems,’ adds Denis Federiakin. ‘I’m currently working on a project where we study the quality of college engineering programmes in the BRICS countries. We are currently comparing the equivalence of tests given to engineering students in Russia and in China,’ he says.

‘For the most part, students work in the centres part-time, be that in person or remotely depending on what the agreement was with the lab head. This is convenient for them and doesn’t interfere with their schoolwork,’ Victoria Malova comments. ‘Working at one of the Institute of Education’s centres is completely voluntary for master’s students, and some find work outside of the institute. As for me though, I can say that the Centre for Developing Leadership in Education is the first job I’ve had where I stay late after work simply because the job is interesting,’ she concludes.