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Conversatie Arabisch 2: spreektaal 1



Succesvol voltooid hebben van Grammatica Arabisch 3 en Teksten Arabisch 1 & 2, of – ter beoordeling van de examencommissie- aantoonbare vergelijkbare competentie..


This course aims at introducing students who have successfully completed one year of MSA (Modern Standard Arabic) to Colloquial Arabic. Arabic language is well known for its different dialects: Egyptian, Moroccan, Iraqi, Levantine (Lebanese, Syrian, and Palestinian)… etc. It is highly recommended for anyone wishing to move to stay in the Arabic World to learn and practice the correspondent Arabic dialect, since it represents the language of everyday life of the region. As you are going, hopefully, to move to Cairo, the course is limited to the Egyptian Arabic Colloquial.

In general, the course consists of two parallel tracks: the first one provides students with new vocabulary and expressions related to a specific topic of everyday life. The second reveals some important grammatical features of the Egyptian Colloquial.
As the two tracks are strongly connected, the course is designed in the manner of introducing a topic in the beginning of each week by the means of a dialogue or a text that students should prepare before coming to the class. They essentially have to practice the use of words and expressions in the right way as shown in the text.
In the class, the instructor will go over the topic quickly to make sure that the students are able to understand and reuse the vocabulary. Then, the grammar is explained and some drills must be done in the class. Students are asked now to elaborate their first understanding by trying to lead by themselves a similar text or dialogue related to the main topic. As we move on, you will be able to maintain more detailed scenarios.

Course Objectives

At the end of the course, students are expected to have a reasonable command of the Egyptian Arabic Colloquial. This is consisted of the following:
1. Initiate and respond to fully Egyptian Conversations and dialogues related to different topics (Introducing themselves, use polite greetings and formal expressions, handle most relevant scenarios from everyday life, discuss some of the political and social issues of modern Egypt, read some texts from the Egyptian Folk Literature,… etc.)
2. Improve their listening and speaking skills in Egyptian Colloquial. Students are expected to understand original Egyptian Colloquial texts and reflect on them (Series, songs, conversations… etc.)
3. Have a good knowledge of the Grammar ruling the Egyptian Colloquial.
4. Introduce some features and characteristics of the Egyptian Culture through the learning of its dialect.


There is an attendance requirement for the seminars: Students are expected to attend all seminars. Absence must be notified in advance to determine how missed lectures or, unlikely, exams can be overtaken. Students who fail to meet this requirement are will receive incomplete credits for participation

Grading System

Students will be graded as following:

  • Weekly Assignments: 20%

  • Class Participation: 15%

  • Mid-term (Writing and Oral): 20%

  • Final (Writing and Oral): 45%

Kindly note that any further efforts by the students (project, presentation… etc.) will be taken into consideration. Another important component of your grade, which will be closely monitored, is your progress in the course.




  • M. Woidich & Rabha Heinen-Nasr, Kullu Tamam! An Introduction to Egyptian Colloquial (Cairo: AUC Press, 2004). ISBN: 978 977 424 842
    This book is mandatory since it will be used in class explanations and Homework. In addition, you can have any other book related with the Egyptian Colloquial as an extra material.
    Additional materials and Audio-Visual materials will be provided by the instructor during the semester.


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Academic Integrity
Students are expected to be familiar with Leiden University policies on plagiarism and academic integrity. You can check the following links: (English) (Dutch)
Plagiarism will not be tolerated. If you submit any work with your name affixed to it, I assume that work is your own and that all sources are indicated and documented in the text (with quotations and/or citations).

Note on the teaching language

Since students in this class have completed one Arabic year, they are expected at the end of the semester, hopefully, to deal with a fully Arabic Class; this will help you improve your language.
For that reason, the main language in this course is the Egyptian Colloquial. We will refer to MSA to get the idea more clear or to make connection between MSA and Colloquial. When needed, English is used in order to ensure your totally understanding.