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College of Arts & Sciences

Arabic Language Study

Alena Klimas in Morocco

Alena Klimas ’17 never thought that she would one day become a Peace Corps volunteer in Morocco. Klimas studied Arabic and received a Critical Language Scholarship to study intensive Arabic. See “Klimas Puts Arabic to Use with Peace Corps in Morocco.”

More Than 300 Million People Speak Arabic

Modern Standard Arabic language is used in formal situations, printed mass media and books in the Arabic speaking countries. The language spoken on the streets in the Arabic speaking countries uses largely the same vocabulary from standard Arabic, but the colloquial language is more flexible when it comes the sentence structure and grammatical rules.

Arabic is a language with very deep and rich cultural and historical traditions that go back thousands of years. It is the native tongue of more 300 million speakers in the Arabian Peninsula, the Levantine, Egypt, Sudan, and North Africa. It is also used in vast areas in east, central and West Africa. It is the official language of 22 countries, and is ranked the 6th among the major languages of the world. It is one of the six official languages used at the United Nations Organization.

Arabic Program Courses at Ohio University

The Linguistics Department offers three years of Arabic classes. Students from all majors and at any Arabic language proficiency are welcome to join the Arabic courses.

  • ARAB 1110. Elementary Arabic 1 (4 Credits) — This is an elementary-level course designed to facilitate students’ acquisition of basic proficiency in communication within culturally significant contexts. Students learn Modern Standard Arabic language skills in an environment integrating interactive video and classroom instruction.
  • ARAB 1120. Elementary Arabic 2  (4 Credits) — Prerequisite: ARAB 1110 or consent of instructor. This course builds upon the foundation established in 1110. Greater emphasis is placed upon oral and written expression. Cultural issues are explored in an environment integrating interactive video and classroom instruction.
  • ARAB 2110. Intermediate Arabic I  (4 Credits) — Prerequisite: ARAB 1120 or equivalent, or a minimum three years of high school Arabic or placement interview. This course provides intensive, methodical review of grammar and syntax combined with the integrated development of proficiency in the four language skills. It expands cultural knowledge and functional vocabulary through intermediate-level readings and discussions, with increased emphasis on written communication.
  • ARAB 2120. Intermediate Arabic II  (4 Credits) — Prerequisite: ARAB 2110 or equivalent, or placement interview. This is a continuation of ARAB 2110. Students who successfully complete this course will have necessary skills for daily life in the Arab world and will be ready for more advanced course work using authentic materials. Expansion of cultural knowledge.
  • ARAB 3990. Special Topics  (1-3 Credits) — Prerequisite: ARAB 2120 or previous knowledge of Arabic language. This course is designed to enable students to attain and advanced level of proficiency in Arabic language skills, while refining and expanding their knowledge of grammar and sentence structures via intensive, daily instruction. An additional focus on different Arabic dialects is included in this course.

For more information on studying Arabic at Ohio University, contact the Arabic Language Program coordinator Mohamed Amira.

Language Placement Testing or Test-Out Information

Students who have prior knowledge of Arabic should contact the Linguistics Department for test-out and language course placement information. Students wishing to take placement tests must stop by to take the test in Gordy Hall 383 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., or call the department at 740-593-4564 to schedule an appointment. Students who have no prior background in Arabic or would like to begin with a new foreign language do not need to take a placement test but should register for the beginning course (e.g.:  1110).

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