This site, Luch sveta, gives you the opportunity to hear authentic, contemporary spoken Russian related to interesting current events topics, with full transcripts and English translations. But if you find the material too advanced, or are just looking for more resources, check out some of the links below.
(Also see the dictionaries page.)
AFTER THE FIRST YEAR – TOP RECOMMENDATIONS
Originally a project of the Russian state news agency but now stands on its own. Zlata Karlova has created a wide range of resources that combine language and cultural information. In particular you can get some good practice with her intermediate-level dialogues featuring Анна and Майкл and her series of fun quizzes. There’s also her podcast series Как сказать, a collection of Russian idioms, a bunch of popular songs with texts and translations and more.
Walks you through a fun story step by step, making sure you learn along the way. Requires free sign-up. There are also other Russian modules on Memrise, mostly focused on memorizing lists of vocabulary using their quiz tools. BE WARNED that some modules contain errors — anyone can upload something to this site. The “Bookbox Stories” module is substantially better than much of the other material.
An online beginner to intermediate course centered around cute claymation videos. Developed by Moscow State University’s Centre for International Education. Great review of first-year material. Slightly confusing to navigate through each lesson, but not too hard to figure out.
Great for keeping up your interest in the Russian language and culture! Entries on language idiosyncrasies, slang, cultural phenomena, etc. But probably not as good as the other sites at actually helping you learn the language, since you’ll mostly be reading about the language in English. Still, the topics are all very interesting, and you can pick up some useful vocabulary and phrases relevant to specific situations.
OTHER GOOD RESOURCES
From UT-Austin. Russian rock songs and music videos with subtitles in Russian, literal English or colloquial English. Great for music lovers!
From Cornell. Great dialogues to help you acquire common language structures, especially if you practice the variations and read the “Почему?” section. However, the dialogues are very minimalist and non-contextualized (don’t expect a cute narrative!) because their main function is to demonstrate grammatical features of the language. Still, they offer excellent practice with the basic language patterns you need to master to speak Russian fluently.
From the School of Russian Asian Studies (you may know them for their great study abroad programs), an archive of text-based lessons that teach useful vocabulary on a range of interesting cultural topics.
An archive of the language learning supplements to Russian Life magazine. Lots of glossed and stressed texts, with exercises, on interesting cultural topics. Best for advanced learners.
Unscripted, everyday dialogues, many with transcripts. Good for exposure to what Russian sounds like in a natural, authentic, casual setting.
The Department of Slavic Languages & Literatures at the University of Kansas offers several very short stories by Pushkin, Tolstoy and Chekhov. Useful tools for learners include word glosses, annotations of difficult passages, stress marks and audio recordings of the text. The site also includes supplementary materials for a good intermediate-level reader based on Viktoria Tokareva’s “A Day Without Lying.”