ULAR51002 LEAP Introduction to Arabic

  • Credits: 10
  • Pre-requisite: None.
  • Co-requisite: Open to all students with no prior knowledge of Arabic. If you are studying a Modern Languages Degree, either single or joint honours, please refer to relevant guidance about eligibility for LEAP units on your programme structure.
  • Anti-requisite: Students taking the unit for university credit as part of their degree must not have already taken the unit ULAR51010 LEAP Arabic 1.
  • Taught during: semester two (February to May)
  • Timetable: Timetable for the course


This course is for absolute beginners. It is designed for those who wish to attain a basic understanding of the Arabic language with focus on speaking. The course teaches MSA (Modern Standard Arabic). Students will be introduced to the Arabic alphabets and some of the basics of pronunciation, reading and writing of letters and short words, and understanding of some very simple spoken texts in Arabic, as well as the opportunity to acquire some high-frequency words and phrases. Topics will include: alphabet, numbers, days of the week, months and dates, seasons, family, countries and nationalities. The course serves as a starting point to enable further language learning.

The introductory course differs from LEAP Arabic 1 in length, topics covered, and learning outcomes.

LEAP Arabic 1 is a full-year course taught over two semesters, and goes further and deeper into the language structure and grammar. It is approximately double the number of teaching hours and double the number of self-study hours, whereas the introductory level – Introduction to LEAP Arabic– is only one semester long.

Learning outcomes

Upon successful completion of the course, students should be able to: 

  • communicate simply at a very basic level in spoken Arabic in a limited range of everyday situations;
  • demonstrate understanding of key information in basic spoken texts and texts written in Arabic;
  • read some familiar and daily expressions used in common everyday situations and write very simple messages;
  • have some understanding and knowledge of ways of life in the Arab world and it’s culture.

By the end of the course, students should be able to perform at Level A1.1 of the Common European Framework.

Transferable skills

Pair and teamwork, focussed listening, informal presentations, language awareness, cultural appreciation.

Teaching and learning methods

2 x 2 hours seminar per week (total 4 contact hours), delivered through blended learning which integrates on campus and on-line instruction as necessary. This will also include online digital learning available via Blackboard and will be supplemented by extra online resources to aid students in their independent learning.


  • Week 11- Listening 10% & Written Exam 50%;
  • Week 12 - Oral Exam 40%

If government or university guidance requires assessment to be held online, then Listening Exams may be assessed alongside the Speaking Exams

Nature and timing of feedback

Feedback will include a combination of

  • informal ongoing oral and written feedback resulting from homework and class-based learning activities;
  • formal written feedback will be given following every assessment;


Dr Orieb Masadeh-Tate

Taught by

See timetables

Maximum entry 

20 per group

Set texts

Mastering Arabic 1, Jane Wightwick & Mahmoud Gaafar, Palgrave Macmillan; 3rd edition (20 Nov. 2014). ISBN: 978-1137380449.

Recommended texts

Students are encouraged to use the Language Centre for material for beginners in Arabic.


Fee-paying students only can move on to the LEAP Arabic 1, but should note that much of the material will be a repeat of the introductory unit. Students may be able to proceed to LEAP Arabic 2 subject to:

achieving a mark over 80%; Agreeing to study independently the material recommended by the language tutor to reach the Common European Framework level required at the end of LEAP Arabic 1 (A1); an entry-level assessment carried out by the tutor.


Successful completion of this course unit will enhance your curriculum vitae and employability. It will help prepare you for travelling to and working in the Arab world if followed by further learning of Arabic.