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University Language Centre

ULAR10031/32 – Introduction to Spoken Arabic

A course unit offered in conjunction with the University College for Interdisciplinary Learning.

  • Credits: 10
  • Level: 1
  • Pre-requisite: None
  • Co-requisite: Open to students not following Honours courses in Arabic
  • Taught during: either semester one or semester two. Note that semester two is a repeat of semester one
  • Timetable: Timetable for the course


This course is designed for students who wish to move quickly through the fundamentals of Arabic grammar while developing some basic communicative skills in Modern Standard Arabic. It aims to teach students simple structures, lexis and phrases which will enable them to communicate effectively in a range of situations in an Arabic-speaking country. Reading and writing Arabic text is not covered, though some time is devoted to learning the alphabet and to developing recognition of commonly seen words and signs. Students will be expected to use the range of resources available to them in the Language Centre and to communicate with native speakers wherever possible, in order to develop cultural competence.

Learning outcomes

Upon successful completion of the course, students should be able to 

  1. Handle some of the basic grammatical structures of Arabic; 
  2. Communicate orally in a limited number of social contexts; 
  3. Perform at Level A1 (Speaking and Listening) of the Common European Framework.

Transferable skills

Pair and team work, focused listening, ability to deliver informal presentations, language awareness, cultural appreciation.

Teaching and learning methods

One three-hour seminar per week. Students will actively practice new language (words, phrases and grammar) in pairs and groups in class, as well as through written exercises at home; eLearning; Supplementary materials, including links to online resources, to aid students in their independent learning will be available via Blackboard.


One written test (35%), one oral test (35%) and one aural test (30%). The written and aural tests will take place in Week 11; oral  assessments will be scheduled in week 12.

Nature and timing of feedback

Feedback will include a combination of informal ongoing oral and written feedback resulting from homework and class-based learning activities;formal written feedback following every assessment.


Sandra Torres

Taught by

See timetables

Maximum group size

16 per group

Set texts

Mastering Arabic 1, units 1-7. Jane Wightwick & Mahmoud Gaafar, Palgrave Macmillan; 3rd edition edition (20 Nov. 2014). ISBN: 978-1137380449.


Following this course, with additional study and/or a short period of time in an Arabic speaking country over the summer period, students may progress to ULAR20210 - Pre-intermediate Arabic.