Arabic Studies (ARBC)

From a global perspective, the study of the Arabic language has become increasingly important and Arabic speakers are in great demand in certain careers. Approximately 300 million people speak Arabic, making it one of the world's most widely spoken languages. It is the official language of 25 countries, as well as one of the official languages of the United Nations. Moreover, being the sacred language of the Qur'an, Arabic honors its richness and ancient heritage that is culturally vibrant today.

Since 2006, the Arabic Studies program at Bucknell University has been targeting the acquisition of the Arabic language and promoting familiarity with the world's Arab cultures, literatures and histories. Language courses offered at Bucknell consist of beginning and intermediate Arabic courses in Modern Standard Arabic (MSA) and Spoken Arabic, particularly the Levantine dialect. The growth of the Arabic Studies program prompted the College of Arts and Sciences and the Department of Languages, Cultures and Linguistics to approve a minor in Arabic Studies in 2013.

The Arabic Studies minor consists of six courses.

Four Core courses:

ARBC 101Beginning Arabic I1
ARBC 102Beginning Arabic II1
ARBC 103Intermediate Arabic I1
ARBC 104Intermediate Arabic II1

Two Elective courses1:

ARBC 201Intermediate Arabic Conversation I.5
ARBC 202Intermediate Arabic Conversation II.5
ARBC 203Unveiling the Hijab's Culture1
ARBC 250Topics in Arabic Studies1
ARBC 301Advanced Topics in Arabic.5-1
ARTH 221Visual Cultures of the Mediterranean 1 - 1000 CE1
ARTH 275Art and Architecture of the Islamic World1
CLAS 228Ancient Near Eastern History1
HIST 100Thinking About History (The Question of Palestine)1
HIST 194History of Modern Middle East1
HIST 229Topics in American Intellectual History (Iran-Turkey: Islam/The Secular)1
HIST 290Europe Imperialism and Colonialism1
HIST 399Non-western History (U.S. in the Middle East since 1945)1
IREL 229Middle East Conflict and Revolution1
IREL 381Arab-Israeli Conflict, Peace Process1
RELI 110Introduction to Judaism, Christianity, and Islam1
RELI 201Islam1
PHIL 267Islamic Philosophy1
POLS 287US Foreign Policy and the Middle East1
POLS 289The Arab-Israeli Conflict1
POLS 224Government and Politics of the Middle East1
POLS 266Nationalism East and West1
1

 Two half-credit courses are considered as one course toward fulfilling the minor requirements.

Arabic minors are strongly encouraged to participate in approved study abroad programs in any Arabic-speaking country. No more than two of the study abroad courses can count toward fulfilling the Arabic minor requirements. Arabic minors who opt to apply for an Arabic study abroad program must receive course approval from the director of the Arabic Studies Program prior to starting the program.  

Students interested in the minor should consult Professor Martin Isleem for the appropriate sequencing of courses.

The goal of the Arabic minor is to equip Bucknell students with definable linguistic proficiency in four skills: speaking, writing, listening and reading, which are in line with the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Language’s (ACTFL) Standards for the Arabic language. The minor also aims to familiarize Bucknell students with the various cultural aspects of Arabic-speaking countries in the Middle East and North Africa. Students with an Arabic minor will attain at least the intermediate level of proficiency in Arabic, which will furnish them with a solid foundation in their pursuit of academic and professional careers for which this is a prerequisite. Students minoring in Arabic Studies will be able to:

  1. Achieve at least intermediate-mid level of proficiency according to ACTFL standards and guidelines (2,4,7,8,9)
  2. Demonstrate proficiency in both Standard and Spoken Arabic by their ability to engage with native speakers of Arabic. An Oral Proficiency Interview (OPI) test will be conducted at the end of each academic year (1,3,6,7)
  3. Understand customs, perspectives and gestures commonly found in various Middle Eastern cultures and compare them to their own (3,4,5,6,7,8,9)
  4. Implement their linguistic skills as well as their knowledge of the Arab culture outside the classroom setting (2,3,9)
  5. Apply knowledge of other disciplines in the course of their Arabic  Studies minor, promoting exchanges of knowledge that enhance interdisciplinary education. (1,2,3,4,6,7,8,9)

Numbers in parentheses reflect related Educational Goals of Bucknell University.

Courses

ARBC 101. Beginning Arabic I. 1 Credit.

Offered Either Fall or Spring; Lecture hours:3,Recitation:1
Beginning language skills. Practice in listening, speaking, reading and writing. Elementary grammar. Introduction to Arabic culture.

ARBC 102. Beginning Arabic II. 1 Credit.

Offered Either Fall or Spring; Lecture hours:3,Recitation:1
Continuation of Arabic language skills. Practice in listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Prerequisite: ARBC 101 or equivalent.

ARBC 103. Intermediate Arabic I. 1 Credit.

Offered Either Fall or Spring; Lecture hours:3,Recitation:1
A continuation and review of basic grammar, emphasizing all four language skills and culture. Prerequisite: ARBC 102 or equivalent.

ARBC 104. Intermediate Arabic II. 1 Credit.

Offered Spring Semester Only; Lecture hours:3,Recitation:1
Review of basic grammar with an emphasis on all four language skills and culture. Prerequisite: ARBC 103 or equivalent.

ARBC 105. Intensive Intermediate I. 1 Credit.

Offered Either Fall or Spring; Lecture hours:4,Recitation:1
Continuation of Arabic language skills. Practice in listening, speaking, reading and writing. Prerequisite: ARBC 101 or equivalent.

ARBC 201. Intermediate Arabic Conversation I. .5 Credits.

Offered Fall Semester Only; Lecture hours:2
Concentration on development of speaking skills. Conducted entirely in Arabic by native speaker. Prerequisite: ARBC 102.

ARBC 202. Intermediate Arabic Conversation II. .5 Credits.

Offered Spring Semester Only; Lecture hours:2
Concentration on development of speaking skills. Conducted entirely in Arabic by native speaker. Prerequisite: ARBC 201.

ARBC 203. Unveiling the Hijab's Culture. 1 Credit.

Offered Alternate Fall or Spring; Lecture hours:3
An introductory cultural course to various aspects of the Muslim and Arab world to get a deep look at the Middle Eastern culture and customs.

ARBC 204. Naming violence: Language, space and power in the Israeli Palestinian conflict. 1 Credit.

Offered Spring or Summer; Lecture hours:3
This IP course adopts an integrative approach of two fields of knowledge: sociolinguistics and political geography. The course aims to explore the Palestinian-Israeli struggle and how this struggle is constructed and reproduced in various spaces that are directly related and those that are assumed to be related to the struggle. Crosslisted as UNIV 204 and IREL 204.

ARBC 250. Topics in Arabic Studies. 1 Credit.

Offered Either Fall or Spring; Lecture hours:3; Repeatable
Study of topics in Arabic language, cultures and societies. Prerequisite: ARBC 102 or equivalent.

ARBC 301. Advanced Topics in Arabic. .5-1 Credits.

Offered Either Fall or Spring; Lecture hours:Varies,Other:Varies; Repeatable
Advanced Arabic independent study under the direction and supervision of an instructor. Topics to be selected by the student in consultation with the instructor. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.

Faculty

Assistant Professor: Martin Isleem (Director)

Visiting Assistant Professor: Hilda Mokh

Teaching Assistant: Dena Isleem