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Unit information: Modern Standard Arabic Level 1 Grade 1 in 2016/17

Please note: you are viewing unit and programme information for a past academic year. Please see the current academic year for up to date information.

Unit name Modern Standard Arabic Level 1 Grade 1
Unit code LANG10012
Credit points 20
Level of study C/4
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 4 (weeks 1-24)
Unit director Dr. Foster
Open unit status Open




School/department Department of Hispanic, Portuguese and Latin American Studies
Faculty Faculty of Arts

Description including Unit Aims

The unit provides an introduction to Modern Standard Arabic, the language of literature and the media in the Arab world. MSA is a crucial factor in acquiring competence in any of the many varieties of spoken Arabic.

The unit aims:

  • To provide students with a solid foundation of the essential structures of the target language thus enabling them to communicate effectively across the four key language skills at an elementary level on a variety of general topics
  • To enable participants to give and understand information and to achieve a confident elementary level of communicative competence in everyday situations
  • To introduce students to the customs, culture and society of the regions/countries in which the languages are spoken and to develop student awareness of the general social and cultural background of the language
  • To enable students to apply their developing language skills into areas related to their field of study

Intended Learning Outcomes

Students will:

  1. be able to communicate orally and in writing with a reasonable degree of accuracy and fluency.
  2. be able to work at a basic level with authentic material and retrieve necessary information.
  3. have acquired knowledge and awareness of the general social and cultural background of the target language
  4. be able to understand and interpret written texts at a basic level
  5. be able to respond to written texts at a basic level

Teaching Information

3 contact hours per week (Students must remain in the same group with the same tutor for all 3 hours)

The communicative approach will be used; learners will be involved in a variety of interactive and stimulating activities with maximum use of the target language. This will be supported by e-learning opportunities; a Blackboard site, wikis, blogs and use of self-study facilities.

Assessment Information

The four skills (listening, speaking, reading and writing) are assigned equal weighting for the purposes of assessment (25% each).

For reading and writing there is a formal examination in the summer examination period, which comprises 25% of the total mark. This assesses ILOs 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5.

Listening is assessed by continuous assessment, consisting of listening assignments and class tests, which comprise 25% of the total mark. Both assess ILOs 1 and 2.

Speaking is tested by continuous assessment, consisting of marked coursework (oral presentation) and an oral test. Both assess ILOs 1, 2 and 3.

The overall pass mark for this unit is 40%.

Reading and References


Ba'albaki, M. and Baalbaki, R. (2007). Al-Mawrid: English-Arabic & Arabic-English Pocket Dictionary.

Oxford Arabic Dictionary (2014). OUP.

Scriven, R., Amiot-Cady, G., Reichert, S. (eds). (2010). Collins Arabic Dictionary (English-Arabic, Arabic-English). In Colour. Harper Collins.


Wightwick, J. & Gaafar, M. (2008). Arabic Verbs and Essentials of Grammar (Second Edition). McGraw-Hill.

Wightwick, J. & Gaafar, M. (2005). Mastering Arabic Grammar. Palgrave Macmillan

Language Learning Text Book

Wightwick, J. & Gaafar, M. (2007). Mastering Arabic 1. Book and double audio CD pack. Palgrave Macmillan.