Arabic 1a & 1b

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Prerequisite for Arabic 1a: None

Prerequisite for Arabic 1b: Arabic 1a


Contact Hours: 80 + 80

Credit Hours 4 + 4


Textbook: Arabiyyat al-Naas I by Munther Younes, Makda Weatherspoon and Maha Foster, Routledge 2013


This two-course sequence assumes no previous knowledge of Arabic and provides a thorough grounding in the four language skills of listening, speaking, reading, and writing. It starts with the alphabet and the number system and builds the four skills gradually and systematically through carefully selected and organized materials focusing on specific, concrete and familiar topics such as self identification, family, travel, food, renting an apartment, study, the weather, etc.). These topics are listed in the textbook’s table of contents.

The student who successfully completes the two-course sequence will have mastered about 990 basic words and will be able, within the context of the themes covered in the first ten units of the textbook (refer to the table of contents in the textbook), to: 1) understand and actively participate in conversations, 2) read and understand, with the help of a short list of words, passages of up to 180 words written in Arabic script, and 3) discuss orally in class and write a 50-word paragraph in Arabic.

The successful student will also have mastered the following grammar topics: the use of the definite article al, gender distinctions, the relative adjective (nisba), number (the singular, dual and plural), possession in nouns, possession with ‘ind, possession with ma‘, the construct (iDaafa), verb conjugations in the perfect (past) and imperfect (present/future), negation with maa andmish, the comparative/ superlative, the ordinal numbers 1-10, verb types (sound, hollow and lame), pronouns attached to prepositions, object pronouns, wanting with bidd, the use of kull, the imperative, agreement in nounadjective phrases, some differences between Levantine and MSA (biddi/’uriid), roots and families of words, the different uses of maa, verb-subject (dis)agreement, the relative pronouns illii in Levantine and alladhii,allatii and alladhiina in MSA, word order and agreement in the Arabic sentence, equational and verbal sentences, identifying roots and verb stems, the forms of the Arabic verb, the use of kaana with the imperfect, the imperfect of assimilated verbs in MSA, looking up words in an Arabic dictionary using roots, the use of maa and lam for negation, the derivation of the active and passive participles and verbal nouns, the use of ammaa … fa, and the use of qad with the perfect verb.

The two-course sequence aims to take the student from the Novice to the Intermediate Mid level according to the ACTFL proficiency guidelines.