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Faculty of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies

Part II

Course Description 2023-24

This paper aims to develop students’ reading and writing skills in Modern Standard Arabic. Students are introduced to a range of academic and literary texts in order to develop their ability to follow complex discussions and improve their understanding of linguistic structures. Classes run completely in Arabic.

This course aims to develop the skills of reading, writing and listening, and consolidate grammar and vocabulary to a sophisticated level, to encourage students to develop sensitivity to Arabic genre, style and text structure, to expose them to a variety of challenging and interesting text-types, academic and literary, and to stimulate them to express their own opinions. The language of the classroom is Educated Spoken Arabic, based on the dialect that each student speaks on their return from the Year Abroad.

Form and Conduct

MES.31 (oral and written combined) is weighted as one paper for examination purposes

The examination consists of two parts, a three-hour written examination (100 marks) and an oral examination (100 marks). The written examination, which will be taken at the end of the fourth year, will contain: one passage of Arabic on which candidates will be required to answer questions (35 marks); one passage of Arabic to be translated into English (25 marks); one passage of English to be translated into Arabic (20 marks); and one question requiring a piece of writing in Arabic (20 marks). All questions must be attempted.

The oral examination consists of three sections. Sections (a) and (b), liaison interpreting, and discussion, will be taken at the beginning of the fourth year, and section (c), listening comprehension, will be taken at the end of the fourth year. All timings are approximate and all oral examinations are recorded. (a) Liaison interpreting. Candidates act as an interpreter for two examiners, one speaking Arabic and one English. (30 marks) (b) Discussion. Candidates discuss a topic of their choice which has been approved in advance by the examiners. (40 marks) The examination for sections (a) and (b) together will last approximately twenty-five minutes. (c) Listening comprehension. Candidates answer questions on one recorded passage, which may be taken from a variety of sources. (30 marks)

This description is subject to change, for the latest information, students should consult the Undergraduate Handbook available on the Faculty Intranet.

Terms taught
Michaelmas, Lent, Easter
Michaelmas, Lent, Easter
Michaelmas, Lent, Easter