Bachelor of Circumpolar Studies

The Bachelor of Circumpolar Studies is a 3-year study program (180 ECTS) offered jointly by:

  • (1) the University of Nordland as a principal partner who offers core obligatory courses being a main destination of academic mobility of BCS NArFU’s students;
  • (2) the Northern (Arctic) Federal University who integrated a part of BCS studies into the study curriculum of a bachelor program at the Institute of Philology and Cross-Cultural Communication;

Other members of the University of the Arctic such as the University of Lapland, the Finnmark University College are the prospective partners who offer courses related to the BCS studies.

Students of the program have a unique opportunity to finish part of their BCS studies abroad. The information below is intended for those, who choose a semester package at NArFU.

Northern (Arctic) Federal University is located in the North and its mission is forming and development of competitive staff resource in the Northern-Western Federal District of the Russian Federation. BCS has strong northern focus and provides students at NArFU with important knowledge about Arctic nature, resources, environment, politics, peoples and cultures, offering some real examples from the Russian lands and in the comparative manner. The program is based on interdisciplinary approach so the students of all NArFU institutes may take part in it.

This program is one of the main supporters of academic mobility; moreover it helps to internationalize education and research activity of NArFU and in so doing to contribute in creating principally new international scientific and educational sphere in the circumpolar region. Within the BCS program students registered at NArFU go on exchange to the University of Nordland through the North2North mobility program every year.


The program consists of seven core courses, which are offered online each year and are available to all students that belong to a member institution:

BCS100X An Introduction to the Circumpolar World (10 ECTS)

BCS110X Land and Environment of the Circumpolar World I (10 ECTS)

BCS110X Land and Environment of the Circumpolar World II (10 ECTS)

BCS121X Peoples and Cultures of the Circumpolar World I (10 ECTS)

BCS122X Peoples and Cultures of the Circumpolar World II (10 ECTS)

BCS131X Contemporary Issues of the Circumpolar World I (10 ECTS)

BCS132X Contemporary Issues of the Circumpolar World II (10 ECTS)

Next autumn new three advanced emphasis BCS courses will be announced by NArFU as an integral part of study programs of the Institute of Philology and Cross-Cultural Communication, taught onsite preliminary in the spring semester:

  • Societies, Diversity and Human Development in the High North (10 ECTS)
  • Crossing the Borders: Changes and Challenges of the Russian Politics in the Barents region (1990-2000) / the Arctic (10 ECTS)
  • The Arctic as an art object (10 ECTS)

Three other advanced emphasis courses are offered by the University of Nordland within the "Northern Scandinavian Politics and Societies" program, taught both online and onsite in the autumn semester:

  • SA218S History, Politics and Northern resources, 10 ECTS
  • SA210S Scandinavian Politics, 10 ECTS
  • SA212S Northern Scandinavian Societies, 10 ECTS

For further information concerning courses visit the home page of the University of Nordland.

Advanced emphasis courses are also offered by the Finnmark University College within the "Management of Local and Regional Development" program every spring semester, and by the University of Lapland within the "Arctic Governance" program, offered in the autumn semester, and elective courses of 90 credits from the home institution — the Northern (Arctic) Federal University.

For further information concerning courses visit the home page of the Finnmark University College  and the University of Lapland.


Students develop an interdisciplinary competence on the northern circumpolar world with special reference to cultures and politics, indigenous peoples, environmental issues, contemporary issues and sustainable management of natural resources.

Upon completion of the program students receive «Bachelor of Circumpolar Studies» diploma and University of the Arctic diploma.

Contact information

Coordination of the BCS program at the NArFU is conducted by the Institutional BCS coordinator who is also responsible for strategic development of the program the Local BCS coordinator.

Local BCS coordinator — Irina Kaznina e-mail:
Address: Northern (Arctic) Federal University,
Department of International cooperation,
Naberezhnaya Severnoj Dviny 17,
163002 Arkhangelsk