Arabic MSA


This intensive course covers the basic elements of MSA. Students are immersed in the target language using communicative methods of instruction and all four modalities of reading, writing, speaking, and listening.  The curriculum is thematic and provides students with enough language and cultural awareness to engage and be engaged in basic daily conversations, using simple sentence level discourse. This is an intensive course and students are required to spend additional time completing assignments, some of which requires outside-of-class research.

Duration:         5–8 weeks

Sample novice syllabus


Intermediate – Advanced

This intensive course develops students’ professional skills in the target language (TL) in speaking, listening, reading, and writing. Through a thematic curriculum, students are exposed to authentic materials, including articles, short stories, and various literary genres. The curriculum enhances students’ linguistic and cultural competencies and enables them to complete tasks that occur in real-life situations. By the end of the program, students are expected to function linguistically and culturally at the 2/2+ levels of the MSA language as defined by the Interagency Language Roundtable. This course is heavily student-centered and conducted exclusively in the TL. Students are required to spend additional time outside of the classroom completing assignments.

Duration:         3–8 weeks

Sample Intermediate-Advanced syllabus 



This intensive program exposes students linguistically and culturally to the MSA language at the ILR level 3/3/3 in reading, listening, and speaking. The curriculum is designed to help learners practice and gain confidence using the language at higher levels (L3) of proficiency as defined by the Interagency Language Roundtable. The course is heavily student-centered and conducted exclusively in MSA. During the program, students interact socially, culturally, and linguistically with first-language speakers. These interactions include expert speakers’ seminar sessions, frequent trips to community centers and events, interaction with community members, visits to restaurants and shops, and conversational interviews with first-language speakers.

Duration:         2–3 weeks

Sample Immersion syllabus

Summer Intensive

Summer intensive Arabic MSA begins at the 101 level, i.e. no prior knowledge of the language, and goes through 202. Classes meets for four to six hours of interactive instruction daily, Monday - Friday. They can be taken consecutively (e.g. 101 followed by 102) or individually (i.e. just 101 or just 102). In other words, they do not need to be taken as an entire eight-unit package. Depending on how many courses students take, they can earn 4-16 units of foreign language credit.

Enrollment is open to undergraduate and graduate students, working professionals, college and university faculty, and others. To inquire further and/or register for a course, please email If you would like to begin at the 102 level or higher, please also include your previous language experience (i.e. course syllabus, homework sample, letter of recommendation).

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Project GO – ROTC Students

The SDSU Project GO summer domestic Arabic program starts at the Year 1 – 101 level. Students applying must be ROTC and have no prior Arabic learning experience (school or heritage learner). Students with prior experience in Arabic are encouraged to apply for a Project GO summer overseas/advanced program or a different SDSU language program in which they have no prior learning experience.

Duration:         11 weeks

Credits:            16 units

Courses:            4

Sample summer intensive syllabus

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STARTALK Student Summer Camp

The STARTALK Arabic camp is available to 12 motivated students in grades 9-12 with no prior knowledge of the language. While in the program, students gain insight into Arabic culture and learn to communicate in the Arabic language as spoken in the Levant. They practice communicating in Arabic through a variety of fun, engaging, and meaningful activities, while learning about the life of young people their age in different countries. In addition to being immersed in the Arabic language, they also participate in a variety of authentic cultural activities that deepen their understanding and appreciation of the cultures of the Arabic world.

Upon successful completion, students receive four units of college credit. There are no fees for participation, although students’ families must arrange for transportation to and from SDSU.

Duration:         4 weeks (summer)

Credits:            4 units

Cost:                 This program is offered free-of-charge

Location:         SDSU campus

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