Introductory Certificate in Arabic Language 2018/19

  • To develop the skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing in a variety of contexts using a range of topics,
  • To enable students to express themselves effectively in Arabic and engage in conversations and the exchange of ideas.
  • To develop students’ ability to cope with an unfamiliar language in different contexts by using previous knowledge, listening or looking for key words, contexts or other information to interpret the meaning of a text, dialogue, or discourse.
  • To develop students’ insight into the nature of language and culture with the opportunity to understand Middle Eastern or Islamic societies through knowing the language.
  • To enable students to demonstrate intellectual, transferable and practical skills.

Entry Requirements

The programme has been structured to allow entry for beginners to the language. However, as some students find Arabic challenging in the initial stages in particular, it begins with a 4-week pre-sessional course.

At the end of the pre-sessional course students will take a progress test. If they pass the test successfully, with pass mark of 65, they will be able to register onto the Introductory Certificate in Arabic Language as an official student on the SQA-accredited programme. Students who fail the test will not be able to continue on the programme but the College may be able to offer other options, such as informal evening classes to offer support in improving their language skills.

All other requirements, such as English Language proficiency and references, remain applicable.

Interviews Any prospective student may be invited for an interview if they have not achieved the required grade by a small margin of a maximum of 3 marks, but they have demonstrated the required skills, and showed interest and motivation towards learning.

Course Length

7 months

Tuition Fees

The Introductory Certificate in Arabic Language consists of:

  • Pre-sessional course (4 weeks of teaching)
  • Arabic as a Foreign Language SCQF 5 (a further 8 weeks of teaching)
  • Arabic as a Foreign Language SCQF 6 (12 weeks of teaching)

Fees are £375 per unit for Home/EU students.*

Please note bursaries are available – bursary decisions will only be made after results of the progress test have been issued.

* These fees are subject to change.  

About this course

The Introductory Certificate in Arabic Language is intended for candidates interested in learning Arabic language for personal enrichment; to become familiar with certain aspects of Arab culture, society and history; or to pursue further education in the academic fields of Middle Eastern History, Arabic Studies, Religious Studies, International Studies, and Islamic Studies.

The philosophy of this programme is to teach Arabic as a living language to a diverse body of students with a wide variety of academic and professional needs or personal interests. Therefore, it aims to develop all four skills of listening, speaking, reading, and writing.

This programme is approved and credit-rated by the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA). It is available on a full-time or part-time basis.

Arabic is a Semitic Language and is closely related to Aramaic and Hebrew. Literary Arabic is an official language of 27 countries, and is spoken by well over 300 million native speakers in a wide region stretching across the Middle East, North Africa and the Horn of Africa. Besides being the liturgical language of 1.6 billion Muslims, Arabic is also an official language of the Arab League, the Organisation of the Islamic Conference and the African Union, and is one of the six official languages of the United Nations. Through religious, academic, scientific, philosophical and business terminologies, Arabic has left important influences on other languages of the Islamic world, where Arabic is not the main or official language. Moreover, due to the vicinity and trade connections between Europe and Islamic lands, there have been major Islamic contributions and cultural influences to both medieval Europe and the Renaissance period. All of these make the learning of Arabic language fascinating, and this programme can develop your knowledge, confidence, and communication skills.

Future Study & Careers

Those who study Arabic can find careers in fields such as journalism, business and industry, education, finance and banking, translation and interpretation and consulting.


Four elements of assessment have been assigned for each unit: Listening, Speaking, Reading and Writing. Each unit will be assessed individually.

Additional Information

Programme Elements

The programme is comprised of two compulsory units. The whole programme is equal to 40 credit points with 20 credit points for each unit. The Introductory Certificate will be awarded to students who successfully pass both units.

  • The programme units are as follows: Arabic as a Foreign Language (SCQF 5) aims to provide students with practice in developing oral and written communication skills in different settings and for diverse purposes related to the themes covered. It will also teach them to listen to and understand Arabic spoken in the contexts of family relations, education, nationality, and work; along with learning the customs and traditions of the Arab world. Practical knowledge will be developed in four key areas: reading, writing, listening and speaking. In addition, the unit seeks to consolidate the fundamentals of Arabic grammar at the beginner level. The unit is organised around interactive as well as communicative activities that will allow students to build on all skills in the most effective way.
  • Arabic as a Foreign Language (SCQF 6) seeks to consolidate the teaching of level 5, but also introduces students to themes such as advanced education, friendship, living spaces, travel and currency; as well as some grammatical concepts such as the present tense in the accusative form, negation of the past tense, negation of the future tense, the superlative phrases, the relative clause and the ten verb patterns. The unit will also introduce students to some of the cultural/social aspects of Arabic. Students who successfully complete this unit will be able to partake in simple discussions based on questions and answers, watch and listen to audio / visual materials, read texts on familiar topics and write short paragraphs about the aforementioned topics. The course will be delivered mainly in Arabic. English will be used if necessary or requested by students in particular situations or to explain grammar. Students will use the target language as a means of communication in the classroom.

Core Units

  • Arabic as a Foreign Language (SCQF 5)
  • Arabic as a Foreign Language (SCQF 6)

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