Frequently Asked Questions General

About the School

The HSE School of Design is a division of one of the leading Russian universities — the Higher School of Economics. HSE is included in the list of 40 best young universities in the world (Times Higher Education), and in the most authoritative international educational ratings (QS, THE, ARWU, U.S. News Best Global Universities Subject). The School of Design offers undergraduate, graduate and postgraduate programs, as well as Continuing education courses in more than 10 educational areas. Our graduates become highly skilled professionals in the fields of design, fashion, contemporary art, photography, programming and game design, media and advertising, animation and visual effects.

Does the School of Design have budget places?


There are 4 undergraduate educational programs at the School of Design: Design, Fashion, Contemporary Art and Design at the HSE School of Design — St. Petersburg. Design offers 37 budget places in Moscow and 15 budget places in St. Petersburg. Fashion and Contemporary Art are fully commercial programs.

In addition, there are 6 master's programs at the School of Design: «Design», «Communication and Digital Design», «Fashion», «Practices of Contemporary Art», «Interior Design», «Modern Design in the Teaching of Fine Art and Technology at the School». The «Design» program has 18 budget places, the «Modern design in teaching ...» program has 15 quasi-budget places, the Communication and Digital Design, Fashion, and Contemporary Art Practices programs are commercial. In 2019, the postgraduate school of Design offered 12 budget places. Also, the School of Design offers short and annual courses of continuing education, which currently does not offer any budget places.

What kind of diploma will I receive?

Graduates of the undergraduate and graduate schools of the Design School receive a Russian state bachelor’s and master’s diploma from the Higher School of Economics, respectively.

Graduates of continuing education programs receive a certificate of advanced training at the Higher School of Economics, or a diploma of professional retraining at the Higher School of Economics — depending on the level of the program completed.

Are there any alternatives to the Russian Unified State Examination?

As an exception, instead of the USE, you may be allowed to take internal exams at the Higher School of Economics if you are in one of four categories of applicants:

  • Foreign citizens;
  • applicants with permanent registration in the Crimea;
  • applicants with a disability;
  • applicants who passed the final state certification not in the form of the exam (for example, college graduates), or who passed the certification procedures in foreign educational institutions and did not pass the exam within a year before the end of the acceptance of documents.

In other cases, admission is only based on the results of the exam. If you intend to take the HSE internal exam, then in 2019 you need to apply from June 20 to July 10.

Methodical materials for subjects

Do you offer any type of dormitories?

HSE offers eight dormitory campuses in Moscow. Dormitories are provided to nonresident students and nonresident applicants registered further than 80 km from Moscow, after submitting documents to the Admissions Office. When submitting documents you must indicate that you need a place in the dorms.

Settlement of applicants of the School of Design will take place on weekdays, the cost of living at the time of passing the exam is 180 rubles / day.

For nonresident first-year students, check-in will be carried out using the personal account of the applicant. In August, students who entered the budget places will be able to download the 'direction for housing' from their personal account. Students who enter commercial places will be able to receive a direction for settlement the day after the issuance of an order for their admission. Settlement in the hostel of first-year bachelors will be held at the end of August 2020. The cost of living is anywhere from 718 to 1744 rubles / month — depending on the dorm.

For accommodation- contact or by phone: 7 (495) 772-95-90 ext. 12628.Read more about HSE dormitories.

Undergraduate admissions

Where and when do I submit the admission documents?

Documents are submitted to the selection committee at the address: Myasnitskaya St., 11

Acceptance of documents for the programs «Design», «Fashion», «Contemporary Art» — from June 19, 2020.

What kinds of documents do i need to bring?

A list of documents and filing rules are available on the HSE website.

Do I just have to come with the documents in person?

You need to register in the personal account of the applicant, select the time and date at which you would like to bring the documents and come to the selection committee with a full list of documents.

Submission of documents is possible either in person by an applicant, by mail, or through a third party by an attorney certified authorization.

If I do not register in my account, will my documents be accepted?

The registration is optional, but it can make your life much easier. Firstly, you will save time: there will be a lot of applicants, and preliminary registration will allow you not to stand in line. Secondly, you will be able to double check the list of necessary documents. And if you do not live in Moscow, it is with the help of your personal account that you will enroll in the queue for check-in at the hostel (including during the creative contest).

In the selection committee, what should I indicate: The School, the Media faculty that The School is part of, the program (design, fashion, contemporary art), or profile to which I am applying?

In the selection committee you need to indecate the program — «Design», «Fashion», or «Contemporary Art.»

Am I allowed to apply to multiple profiles simultaneously?

No, inside a single program you can choose only one profile. But if you like, you can apply to different educational programs — «Design», «Fashion», and «Contemporary Art.»

I am not yet 18 years old, can I submit documents myself or is the presence of parents mandatory?

You can submit documents yourself, but be sure to bring consent to the processing of your personal data signed by parents.

Application form.

Is it possible to simultaneously apply for a budget place and a commercial one?

Yes. You can participate in these contests in simultaneously. Moreover, you can play it safe and conclude a contract for a commercial branch, and then, if you pass points to the budget, transfer the original to the budget and terminate the contract (the money is returned in full within 2-4 weeks).

Under which conditions will my documents not be accepted?

If you have provided an incomplete set of documents, if any of the documents is fake, or if you have not overcome at least one of the minimum exams without any other grounds for enrollment, your documents will not be accepted.

Minimum Unified State Exam Scores


Russian language (USE) — 60 points
literature (USE) — 60 points

Russian language (USE) — 60 points
literature (USE) — 60 points
«Modern Art»:

Russian language (USE) — 60 points
literature (USE) — 60 points
English language (USE) — 60 points

How are individual achievement points calculated?

These are additional points that can be obtained for various achievements (from the final essay and participation in the Olympiads to the golden badge of the TRP and the presence of the title «master of sports»). In total, for these achievements you can get no more than 10 points in addition to the amount of competitive points, and these points are taken into account only in the competition for a budget place. Extra points for individual achievements are not taken into account when calculating student discounts.

Points for individual achievements are added only to the sum of points for exams, that is, if you do not have a few points to a minimum on the exam, in this case, additional points, unfortunately, will not save you.

Learn more about criteria for scoring extra achievements.

Undergraduate creative competitions

When and how will the creative contest take place?

In 2020, a creative competition will be held in July in the building of the School of Design (Malaya Pionerskaya St., 12).

We remind you that only applicants who submitted documents to the admissions committee of the Higher School of Economics are allowed to take part in the creative competition.

How many points do I need to get a budget place?

Prior to putting final grades for exams, it is impossible to predict a passing grade for a budget place, because it depends on the scores of all applicants.

If we talk about past experience, then in 2016 the passing score for a budget place was 270 points, in 2017 — 280 points, in 2018 — 283 points out of 300 possible.

We remind you that school graduates who scored less than 60 points for the exam in the Russian language and literature cannot apply for admission to the School of Design.

If I didn’t go to a budget place, then what discounts can I expect?

If you do not meet other criteria for receiving discounts at the Higher School of Economics, then the discounts will depend on how many points you have not reached before entering the budget. According to the results of entrance exams at the School of Design, there are three types of discounts on the Design program: 25% 50% 70% of the cost of training. Extra points for individual achievements are not taken into account when calculating the discount.

Discounts on the results of entrance exams are provided only for programs with budget places (program «Design»). On the commercial programs Fashion and Contemporary Art, discounts are provided starting from the second year, according to the results of training and depending on the student’s place in the educational rating. More details.

If I don’t go to a budget place, then how and on what conditions should I enter a paid place?

To conclude a contract, it is necessary to overcome the minimum threshold points set by the HSE for each educational subject, as well as meet the criteria for concluding contracts that will be published on the HSE website no later than July 1, 2020)

If you are applying for a discount, then the contract with you will be concluded in any case, just have time to conclude it no later than August 10. If you do not apply for a discount, then you need to have time to conclude an agreement until the paid places are over.

Details on the conditions of paid tuition

Master’s degrees at The School

Is it possible to be enrolled in a distance learning format?

For the MA programs, we don't have a distance learning option.

How many programs can I apply for simultaneously?

In 2020, at the Moscow campus, you can only apply for 2 programs max.

Is a deferment from the army granted to the MA students?

Yes, if the applicant receives his first education continuously (he was not expelled from the bachelor's degree and enters the same year in which he completed his bachelor's degree).

Are the MA’s provided a dormitory?

For masters of the Moscow HSE campus — yes. All nonresident students, including masters, permanently registered further than 80 km from Moscow, the university guarantees a place in the hostel. For students studying on a commercial basis, a hostel is provided on the same basis as budget students.

A direction for check-in at the time of entrance examinations is issued strictly after submitting documents to the selection committee. You can check into the hostel 3 days before the first entrance test (including consultations), you must leave the next day after the last entrance test. For the period of entrance examinations, accommodation costs 180 rubles per day, during training, payment is made on a monthly basis and varies from hostel to hostel. More details here.

MA admissions

Can I go through an interview and a portfolio contest remotely if, for good reason, I will not be in Moscow at this time?

Yes you can. To do this, after submitting documents when sending a motivation letter to the email address, you must inform about this and send your address in skype.

How do I write a motivation letter and what is included in the portfolio?

A motivation letter is written in free form (no more than one A4 sheet) and includes general information about the applicant, information about professional activities (if any), an explanation of why they chose a specific master's program, which is in their area of ​​interest, which they see as the result of their training.

Portfolio is a work of authorship or projects, as well as projects in which the applicant participated. The portfolio should reflect the name of the projects, the visual range and a short description. The portfolio may (but not necessarily) be supplemented with links to an electronic portfolio, diplomas of professional contests or events.

The portfolio and motivation letter are provided on real media to the selection committee, and are also sent electronically to with an indication in the subject line of the «Master_» program name «_Family_Name». You have the right to first submit documents, and after that (but before the exam) send a motivation letter to

How do I prepare for the interview?

An interview with a graduate student is carried out simultaneously with a portfolio review. During the interview, the applicant can most fully tell about himself, about his interests in the fields of contemporary design and art, about the professional and career tasks that he outlined for himself, about the project that he planned to develop during the training (if any). The members of the examination committee have the right to ask the applicant additional questions to identify creative potential and a comprehensive analysis of his possible educational path.

What is the timeline for the admissions process?

June 20 — July 31, 2019
Acceptance of documents for master's programs that accept both budget and commercial places.

June 20 — August 16, 2019
Reception of documents for master's programs that accept only commercial places.

When do the exams start?

August 1 and 2, Malaya Pionerskaya St., 12
Exams for the first stream of applicants entering the master's program «Communication and Digital Design», «Design», «Fashion», «Practices of Contemporary Art», «Modern Design in Teaching ...»

August 17, Malaya Pionerskaya St., 12
Exams for the II stream of applicants entering the master's program «Communication and Digital Design», «Fashion», «Practices of Contemporary Art».

About HSE

40 300
7 000
professors and researchers
educational programmes

HSE ART AND DESIGN SCHOOL is a subdivision of the Higher School of Economics National Research University, one of the leading universities in Russia, a participant of the majority of authoritative international educational ratings (QS, ARWU, Times Higher Education, U.S. News Best Global Universities Subject).

It’s not only a huge scientific laboratory, but a representative expert platform as well: the HSE personnel are actively involved in the key expert discussions, they are members of many collegiate and consultative bodies and are opinion leaders of the most important issues in the sphere of education, social policy, healthcare, demography, labor market, transport, public administration, and technological development.