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Arabic Language and Literature


Programs in Arabic language and literature teach people the spoken and written traditions of Arab countries.

Programs in Arabic language and literature study classical and modern dialects. Students learn the spoken and written traditions of Arab countries. They learn how words begin and languages develop. They learn to apply the knowledge to business and technology.

Arabic language and literature programs also include topics such as:


In Arabic language and literature programs, students may be able to specialize in:


A few colleges and universities offer bachelor’s degrees in Arabic language and literature. A bachelor's degree usually takes about four years of full-time study.

A few universities offer graduate degrees in Arabic language and literature. A master’s degree typically requires two years of study beyond a bachelor’s degree. Doctoral (PhD) degree programs usually require two or more years of study beyond the master’s degree.

See schools that offer this program.

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Program Admission

You can prepare for this program by taking courses in high school that prepare you for college. This typically includes four years of English, three years of math, three years of social studies, and two years of science. Some colleges also require two years of a second language.

Below is a list of high school courses that will help prepare you for this program of study:

Graduate Admissions

Admission to graduate programs is competitive. You need a bachelor's degree, good grades, and good test scores. In addition, you must be able to demonstrate that you can speak, read, write, and understand Arabic at an advanced level.

Additional requirements at some schools include:

Typical Course Work

Program Courses

This program typically includes courses in the following subjects:

Graduate Program Courses

Graduate programs in Arabic language and literature typically require:

Things to Know

Arabic is a difficult language to learn because it is very complex. In addition, spoken Arabic is different from written Arabic. There are also different dialects of the language, including Egyptian and Syrian Arabic. Much of the Arabic language and literature course work will focus solely on mastering speaking and reading the language.

Students who major in Arabic language and literature may be required or encouraged to spend some time living, working, and studying abroad. Most programs coordinate semester abroad or work internships. In most cases, you can participate in these after you have completed at least two years of language study.

Colleges that do not have complete programs in Arabic language and literature may offer elective courses as part of a major in interdisciplinary studies or liberal arts.

At some schools, courses in Arabic language are offered through classics or Bible languages and literature programs. They are also often offered through programs in Islamic or Middle Eastern studies.


King-Snohomish Area

University of Washington - Seattle

Tacoma Area

Tacoma Community College