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Arabic 2 Pre-Intermediate


Admission requirements

This course is only available for students in the BA International Studies who have passed Arabic 1 Beginners.


This is an elementary MSA (Modern Standard Arabic) course. MSA is the common language of the 22 Arabic countries, and is widely spread in the inter-Arab media (such as al-Jazeera). Building on the basics students have acquired at the Beginners level, this course will enable them to reach a solid intermediate proficiency by the end of the semester. It provides them with the background information they need if they wish, later on, to learn one of the many dialects of the region. Communicative skills as well as grammar basics will be activated through the story of Egyptian and Syrian students, introducing learners to an Arabic cultural environment.
The course uses an interactive method, giving space to the student to practice and to make sure he/she is progressing in the learning process. Based on an attractive text book, with audio visual material helping the student to efficiently improve pronunciation as well as listening and fluency skills, it requires a lot of self-teaching at home.

Course objectives

  • Converse about routine matters

  • Read simple texts and understand basic information in it without the help of the Dictionary

  • Write informal notes

  • General understanding of the basic aspects of Arabic culture

The course aims at the A1/A2 level of the Common European Framework.


The timetable is available on the BA International Studies website

Mode of instruction

Three two hour tutorials every week

Attending lectures and tutorials is compulsory. If you are not able to attend a lecture or tutorial, please inform the tutor of the course. Being absent without notification can result in a lower grade or exclusion from the final exam or essay.

Course Load

Total course load: 280 hours
Attending classes: 72 hours (6 hrs per week over 12 weeks)
Preparing classes, exams and extra activities : 208 hours

Assessment method

Use of the target language to present and interact with correct pronunciation, vocabulary items and grammar
In Class oral assignment (twice per semester) 10%
Mastering Arabic script. In class dictation test 10%
Use of course contents, including vocabulary items, grammar. Written Exam 20%
Use of the target language to converse with correct pronunciation, vocabulary items and grammar.
Final Listening exam/Oral exam 30% Use of course contents, including vocabulary items, grammar.
Final Written exam 30%

The resit will be a written exam of two hours, and will test if the students have reached the end level of this semester. This exam consists of the following components:

  • Reading and writing;

  • Written dialogue;

  • Vocabulary and grammar.


Blackboard will be used. Students are requested to register on Blackboard for this course.

Reading list

1) Compulsory Literature
Kristen Brustad, Mahmoud Al-Batal, Abbas Al-Tonsi, Al-Kitaab fii Ta’allum al-‘Arabiyya: A Textbook for Beginning Arabic, Part One, Third Edition, 2011, Georgetown University Press.

2) Recommended Literature
Hans Wehr, A Dictionary of Modern Written Arabic (Arabic-English). Edited by J. Milton Cowan. Fourth Edition, considerably enlarged and amended by the author. (Ithaca, N.Y., 1994).


Students are requested to register through uSis, the registration system of Leiden University for this course. General information about uSis is available in English and Dutch.

Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

Not applicable.


Drs R.E. Kon