BA Art History and Arabic

Year of entry: 2021

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Course unit details:
Arabic Language 1

Unit code MEST51011
Credit rating 20
Unit level Level 1
Teaching period(s) Semester 1
Offered by Arabic and Middle Eastern Studies
Available as a free choice unit? No


The course content is based on a set course book plus supplementary materials* Information about Arab culture will be introduced implicitly and/or explicitly within the topics covered.


The aim is to familiarize the students with the Arabic Alphabet and introduce them to simple spoken and written forms and grammar of the language and to enable them to begin to express themselves in simple role-play and simple dialogues, and to begin to read simple authentic texts. 

Knowledge and understanding

  • Identify the Arabic Alphabet and familiarize themselves with the sounds, and simple grammatical rules 
  • Acquire vocabulary which will help them to conduct basic conversations
  • Read and comprehend simple texts and identify the basic sentence construction in Arabic.
  • Be able to write independently simple essays on a number of basic topics taught in class.

Intellectual skills

  • Engage in problem solving activities, working on comprehension, oral and aural skills.

Practical skills

  • Enable the students to use the language communication skills in everyday activities and to a limited extent, in the work situation.

Students will principally be able to:

  • Introduce themselves
  • Find about other people
  • Read notices, signs, advertisements and simple messages
  • Write simple essays independently.

Transferable skills and personal qualities

  • develop their ability to improve their independent learning and performance by identifying strengths and weaknesses.
  • develop their personal organization and time management skills.
  • develop their interpersonal and communicative skill through group work inside and outside the class-room and preparing written and oral classroom presentations.
  • begin to gain awareness of and responsiveness to cultural diversity and intercultural communication.

Assessment methods

Comprehension & Grammar Quiz - 15%

Translation & Writing - 15%

Written Exam - 70%


Feedback methods

  • Formative feedback on weekly assignment
  • In-class comments on language learning and students’ performance in Oral and Written Arabic
  • Written comments on assignments/homework throughout the year.
  • Face to face feedback if required.
  • Summative feedback
  • Feedback sheets indicating the quality of the exam performance in the various categories will be available to students.



Recommended reading

Course Books (* Subject to change with prior notice):

  • At-Takallum: A Comprehensive Modern Arabic Course. Student Book, Starter/A1 Level by Ahmad Noor Al-Deen Sabir Al-Mashrafi 2017
  • At-Takallum: A Comprehensive Modern Arabic Course. ELEMENTARY A2 Level by Ahmad Noor Al-Deen Sabir Al-Mashrafi 2017
  • Al-Kitaab Fii Ta Allum Al- Arabiyya: Pt. 1: A Textbook for Beginning Arabic:  by Kristen Brustad, Mahmoud Al-Batal, Abbas Al Tonsi.  2004Students are required to be in possession of a dictionary when the classes start.
  • Doniach, N.S. et al., The Concise Oxford English-Arabic Dictionary (Oxford: OUP, 1984);
  • Wehr, Hans, Arabic-English dictionary (Urbana, Illinois: Spoken Languages Services, 1994).

Recommended Reading

  • Abboud, P.F. et al. (eds), Elementary Modern Standard Arabic (EMSA) (Cambridge: CUP, 3rd ed. 1983).
  • Mace, J., Arabic Grammar (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 1998);
  • Wightwick, J. & Gaafar, M., Mastering Arabic (including CD pack) (London: Palgrave/Macmillan, 1990).
  • Gaafar, M & Wightwick, J., Easy Arabic Reader (London: McGraw-Hill, 2011).

Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Lectures 22
Seminars 44
Independent study hours
Independent study 134

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Abdelghani Mimouni Unit coordinator
Orieb Masadeh-Tate Unit coordinator

Additional notes

Peer Assisted Study Sessions (PASS)

All students will be allocated to a PASS group.  Sessions are run by pairs of higher year student leaders who have taken the course, in which attendees have a chance to actively discuss difficult course concepts with their peers.  Sessions focus on problem solving in groups in a tutor-free environment where students can raise key questions with each other and, in doing so, understand the material better themselves.  PASS is student-led, informal, friendly and hopefully fun.

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