University of Minnesota
Asian Languages & Literature

Asian Languages and Literature.


Language Resources


  • Arabic-English Dictionary: The Hans Wehr Dictionary of Modern Written Arabic
  • Al Mawrid Dictionary English-Arabic and Arabic-English (Arabic Edition) [Hardcover]

Online Dictionaries

Cultural Resources

The Arabic program at the University of Minnesota began back in 1969 with a few students enrolled and has grown to more than 250 students today. It is housed in the department of Asian languages and Literatures. The program offers three levels of Arabic: beginning, intermediate, and advanced. Courses are taught in sequence during fall and spring semesters. Courses are also offered in the summer where students may complete either the beginning or intermediate level in a ten-week intensive session. Students with no knowledge of Arabic must start with the beginning level either in the fall or summer. Students who have taken Arabic at other institutions, or with some knowledge of Arabic, must schedule a meeting with the director of the program in order to assess their level. In some cases a placement test is required before registering for classes. The test includes: reading, listening, writing, and an oral interview.

Upon completion of the intermediate level, students may choose to take a language proficiency exam (LPE). Completion of the LPE is noted on students' transcripts. The LPE examines students in the skills of reading, writing, listening and speaking. The LPE is administered by the CLA language center located at Jones hall.

Language training begins with a focus on learning the alphabet and reading with confidence. It progresses into basic communicative idioms and simple sentence structure. The second year offers a rigorous content-based curriculum with a focus on understanding culturally oriented texts. The third year concentrates on reading authentic content-based material, speaking, and presentations. It covers a wide array of topics in order to prepare students for their final phase of becoming proficient in Arabic. In addition, the program offers students in all levels training in interactive computer programs intended to develop and build their Arabic language skills.

Study, work, internships, or volunteer experiences abroad can greatly enhance your Arabic language learning experience. Many students report that studying abroad is the highlight of their college career. We urge you to take advantage of the Arabic language programs available in Egypt, Jordan, Morocco, and United Arab Emirates.

Learning Abroad

Find general learning abroad information, including programs available, advising, financial aid and scholarships, policies and procedures, and application materials at the Learning Abroad Center.


Spring 2015 Courses

Summer 2015

Courses for this semester are not yet available. They will become available on 05/26/2015.


Rasha El Helw
Abdelkader Hamouchi
Sidow Mohammed
Katrien Vanpee Director of Language Instruction