Article Information


Pyotr Makeev (

National Research University “Higher School of Economics”, Moscow, Russia

Citation: Makeev P. (2020) Repetitorstvo v Rossii: nel'zya uvidet', no mozhno uslyshat' [Private tutoring in Russia]. Zhurnal sotsiologii i sotsialnoy antropologii [The Journal of Sociology and Social Anthropology], 23(3): 100–121. (in Russian)

Abstract. Current paper is devoted to the phenomenon of private tutoring in Russia. Private tutoring is widely spread in Russian Federation and market of private tutoring is still emerging and growing. Legally private tutors in Russian Federation are seen as self-employed who perform their activity in the informal sector of the economy and are “invisible” to official statistics. Most of them do not pay taxes and have no formal status though in fact the same majority of them work in schools or universities. Number of legislative initiatives, which were established to bring self-employed out of shadows, has not succeeded completely and the majority of private tutors still operate without formalization and see all legislative initiatives as another enforcement to pay «more taxes». This specific provokes the necessity to use qualitative sociological methods for revealing insights and analyzing market of private tutoring. Within current paper authors qualitative research, reinforced with preliminary quantitative study, is presented. Brief literature review is presented in the beginning, providing the definition of private tutoring as “shadow education”. Results of the research done with the help of semi-structured interviews are shown. Interviews were held with private tutors of different age and their clients. As one of the results — two groups of private tutors are revealed: “experienced” and “novice”. Interviews, as method, provide opportunity to describe private tutors' motivation, the way they search for new clients and pricing mechanism. Atypical cases and diversity of private tutoring as informal economic activity are presented.

Keywords: private tutoring, Russia, shadow markets, market of private tutoring, self-employment, informal economy.


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