University of Minnesota
Asian Languages & Literature

Asian Languages and Literature.


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The Arabic program at the University of Minnesota began back in 1969 with a few students enrolled and has grown to about 180 students today. It is housed in the Department of Asian Languages and Literatures. The program offers three levels of intensive Modern Standard Arabic: beginning, intermediate, and advanced. Courses are taught in sequence during fall and spring semesters. Ten-week intensive sessions of beginning and intermediate Arabic are also offered in summer.

Our language courses are supported by a network of tutors who are available to work throughout the week with our Arabic students. We also organize a weekly Arabic conversation table, and Arabic film screenings during the summer session. The Arabic program is pleased to offer colloquial Arabic as well as new content courses on the literatures and cultures of the Arab world starting fall 2015!

Minor in Arabic at the University of Minnesota

Our students can minor in Asian Languages & Literature with an Arabic subplan! All ALL minors consist of a language component and a number of content courses related to the subplan. For details on the Arabic subplan, click here. Questions about minoring in Arabic? Contact our ALL student advisor, Claudia Hasegawa at

Placement and proficiency testing

Students who have taken Arabic at other institutions, or with some knowledge of Arabic, must take a placement test before registering for classes. The test includes a reading, listening, writing, and grammar component, and an oral interview. To schedule an appointment for a placement test, contact Dr. Vanpee at

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; the oral component is taken at the Arabic program.

Arabic LPEs are offered on fixed dates at the start and end of every semester. To register for an LPE, visit the webpage of the Language Center Testing Program.

Study-Abroad for Arabic

The Learning Abroad Center (LAC) at the University of Minnesota offers a variety of study-abroad opportunities in the Arab world. The LAC has partnered with the ALIF institute in Fez to offer a tailored intensive Arabic Language & Culture Program in Morocco. In addition, LAC enables students to study Arabic in Jordan and Israel. For information on program details,financial aid and scholarships, policies and procedures, and application materials, visit the LAC website.


Spring 2016 Courses

Summer 2016 Courses


Rasha El Helw
Hossam Elsherbiny
Mohammed Hussein
Katrien Vanpee Director of Language Instruction