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Modern Standard Arabic 2


Admission requirements

Modern Standard Arabic 1.


This is the second of a four-course sequence that aims at helping students learn and use Arabic. This course builds on skills and knowledge gained in MSA 1 to reach an advanced beginner level. This course will take students from repeating individual words and memorized phrases, to the beginnings of creating sentences, and further develops their appreciation of Arab cultural perspectives, practices and products.

Course objectives

In addition to memorized simple words and phrases, students will be able to construct simple sentences. Students will be able to understand and express information about familiar topics like self, family, habits, daily schedules, etc. in a culturally appropriate manner.



Mode of instruction

  • Seminar
    Attendance and participation are obligatory. Classes missed for a good reason (to the discretion of the conveners and to be discussed BEFORE the class takes place) will have to be made up with an extra assignment. Being absent without notification can result in a lower grade or exclusion from the term end exams and a failing grade for the course.

Course Load

Lectures: 48 hrs.
Preparation and homework assignments: 90 hrs.
Assessment: 2 hrs.
Total : 140 hrs.

Assessment method

To be allowed to sit for the final exam, students must satisfy the following skills requirements throughout the course:

  • Classroom participation: 20%

  • Quizzes (6): 30%

  • Homework assignments: 30%

  • Project: 20%

Students who achieve at least 60% of the above skills requirements may register for the final exam, which counts for 100% of the course grade.
Students who do not receive a passing mark for the final exam may take a resit exam.

Reading list

  • Al-Kitaab Part One, Third Edition Bundle: Book + DVD + Website Access Card, Kristen Brustad, Mahmoud Al-Batal, and Abbas Al-Tonsi, ISBN: 1626161240.

  • Al-Kitaab Part Two, Third Edition Bundle: Book + DVD + Website Access Card, Kristen Brustad, Mahmoud Al-Batal, and Abbas Al-Tonsi, ISBN: 1626161232.

  • Additional material as deemed appropriate by instructo, to be made available via BlackBoard.

One of the following:

  • Badawi, E.-S., Carter, M. G., & Gully, A. (2003). Modern written Arabic: a comprehensive grammar. London: Routledge.

  • Ryding, K. C. (2005). A Reference Grammar of Modern Standard Arabic. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.


BA 1 Midden-Oostenstudies and MA Middle Eastern Studies (tracks Modern Middle East or Islamic Studies) students will be registered by the administration.
Other student who are interested in this course as an optional, are requested to send an email to the study coordinator including their name, student ID number, course title MSA 2, and motivation to take this course.
Depending on the availability of places, the study coordinator will register these students after August 22. By September 1 at the latest the student will be able to see in uSis whether (s)he is registered or not.
Not registered, means no permission to attend this course.

Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

Not applicable.


Dr. H.I.A.A. Ahmed


Students with disabilities
The university is committed to supporting and accommodating students with disabilities as stated in the university protocol (especially pages 3-5). Students should contact Fenestra Disability Centre at least four weeks before the start of their courses to ensure that all necessary academic accomodations can be made in time conform the abovementioned protocol.

Academic Integrity
Students are expected to be familiar with Leiden University policies on plagiarism and academic integrity. Plagiarism will not be tolerated. If you submit any work with your name affixed to it, it is assumed to be your own work with all sources used properly indicated and documented in the text (with quotations and/or citations).