We’ve talked before about Scheine–the confirmations of participation in X or Y course that comprise an unexplainable and totally unnecessary middle step between earning a grade and receiving credit for it. Well, I’ve been toting an ever-growing stack of Russian Scheine around for the past two years, and today, I was finally liberated of them–but not quite in the way I’d expected.

After my first semester at the FU, I dutifully submitted my two Russian Scheine to the department secretary, not knowing that I needed to wait until I’d completed all 5 Russian courses my program requires. Her task was to create a document certifying that the credits I received were accepted for a certain course requirement, after which I would take that document to the institute secretary to get it added to my online transcript. But the first secretary had them recognized as fulfilling a course requirement that I had been planning to fulfill with a different language. I asked her to fix it, and she recommended that I collect the remaining Scheine before I resubmit anything. So I toted the stupid things around with me for the next year and a half from Germany to the US to Germany to the US to Russia to the US…and then forgot them when I left Kentucky in April.


So about a month ago, I went to the (department) secretary’s office hours and discovered, to my horror, that she had left, and there was a new one in her place. So I had to explain the situation all over again. I now had two new Russian Scheine, and while I didn’t have the two old ones, I did know that the secretary would have a copy of the document that had (incorrectly) accepted them as fulfillment for the course requirement. That took a LONG time to explain, although it would have gone faster if she hadn’t kept interrupting me to make helpful suggestions like “Why don’t you just show me the original two Scheine?” (Have you heard nothing I’ve been saying?)

Finally, I managed to at least convince her to consult the department head, one of my (OK, everyone’s) favorite professors. And then today he called me into his office hours. I re-explained the situation to him. As we went over the documents together, we realized that in fact, I was still 3  credit hours short in Russian; the old secretary had made a typo on the form that had led me to believe I was finished (although if I’d thought about it, I would have realized that the numbers didn’t add up).

Profprof: “So let me get this straight. You have taken this same Russian class with this same professor four times before.”

Me: “Right.”

Profprof: “And you’ve always made the same grade.”

Me: “Right.”

Profprof: “So now you need one more grade, namely, from this semester, which you’re already enrolled in, in order to complete the requirement.”

Me: “That’s correct.”

Profprof: “Tja, well, how about we just go ahead and mark it as completed and put the grade you got in all the previous semesters?”

Sounds good to me!

And that’s the story of how I got 3 credit hours for the price of none.


Unfortunately, there’s still no word on where my grades from Kazan have disappeared to. But I feel like we all kind of knew that was going to happen all along.