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Fields of Study: Humanities

Develop a high level of proficiency in Modern Standard Arabic and a better understanding of key issues facing Jordan and the Middle East today. You'll take three Arabic language courses and an elective course; all coursework is taught entirely in Arabic. Arabic language courses include language study and provide content that helps you delve deeper into the culture, history, religion, politics, and society of Jordan. The academically and linguistically rigorous curriculum is an ideal means for achieving fluency.

Unique study opportunities

  • Attend films, lectures, and exhibits in the target language of Arabic.
  • Learn Arabic from Jordanian faculty experienced in teaching students from the US.
  • Examine modern Arabic poetry and its role in social activism and political resistance.
  • Engage in discussions on important recent events, both regionally and internationally, as relayed through contemporary Arab media.
  • Get an introduction to the tenets, practice, and historical development of the religion of Islam.


Language of Instruction: Arabic

Arabic Language Study: Required

This entire program is taught in Arabic. Courses introduce vocabulary, expressions, and structures used frequently in everyday life, and assignments encourage interaction with native speakers in real situations. You’ll improve fluency in reading and writing as well as hone your research and oral presentation skills.

To ensure your success in the program, you’ll interview with staff in Jordan before departure. After arrival, all participants take a language placement exam, which may be retaken once. Students who do not meet the language proficiency requirement at that time will switch to an alternate program focusing on Middle East studies.

Courses and credit

Requirements While Abroad

To successfully complete this program:

  • Take a full-time course of study: Four courses for a total of 24 quarter/16 semester UC units.
  • You may take one course for pass/no pass.

Current Program Courses

You will take the following upper-division courses on this program:

  • Superior Modern Standard Arabic: 9 quarter/6 semester UC units
  • Advanced Topics in Arabic Conversation: 6 quarter/4 semester UC units
  • Arabic Writing: 4.5 quarter/3 semester UC units
  • One elective subject course in Arabic: 4.5 quarter/3 semester UC units. Exact offerings vary slightly depending on the term and instructor availability, but typically include:
    • Contemporary Arab Media
    • Arabic Poetry
    • Introduction to Islam
    • Directed Independent Research

Catalogs and resources

  • Advanced Arabic Language: Review program highlights and current courses (scroll to the bottom) on the CIEE website.
  • UCEAP Course Catalog: See a list of courses UC students have taken on this program.
  • Campus Credit Abroad: Learn the types of credit (major, minor, general education, elective) students from your campus received at this location.

Academic culture

This program is designed specifically for exchange students from US universities; you will be in courses only with other CIEE students. Classes are small, often tutorial style, and have strict attendance requirements. Course instructors are native Arabic speakers who are practiced in teaching Arabic language.

During this academically and linguistically challenging program, you will commit to speaking only Arabic. CIEE co-curricular activities and excursions complement class instruction to improve your study of Arabic language and culture.


You will earn direct UC credit and grades for all coursework. The grades on your UC record will appear exactly as they are on your CIEE record.

Fall grades are usually available early February. Spring and year grades are usually available early to mid-July.