Arabic Studies Minor

Welcome to the Arabic Studies Program

Welcome to Arabic Studies at UNC Charlotte. Learning the Arabic language is a smart move because Arabic is considered a critical language since it is the 5th most commonly spoken native language in the world. Learning Arabic will allow you to develop skills for living, working, and interacting with people in a multitude of countries and to focus on specific details related to your career choices. Because Arabic is an official language used in the United Nations, the Arab League, the Organization of Islamic Conference and the African Union among other world organizations, the need for speakers of Arabic in the U.S. government is important. There are opportunities in the 21st century to open the global economy to the Arab world, and enhance the potential for business development in Arab-speaking regions.

Arabic Studies at UNC Charlotte also offers you cultural literacy. For centuries, the Arab culture has given the world exceptional music, mathematics, art, literature, cuisine, and a unique way of life. By learning about the Arabic world, you will explore distinct cultural products and practices and values crucially important to Arabic people. By studying Arabic, you will also explore many Islamic beliefs and traditions that will allow you to understand this multifaceted culture and people.

Distinguish your professional abilities by learning a language and gain cultural literacy that can be crucial to the economic, political, and military demands in the 21st Century.

Come Explore the Arabic Studies Program:

The Arabic Studies Program offers you the following opportunities:

The Minor in Arabic Studies is an excellent addition to your degree and resume. The minor in Arabic Studies allows students the opportunity to learn Arabic through different language courses and acquire a basic level of cultural competency by taking courses taught in English and offered across a range of disciplines, including but not limited to Religious Studies, Political Science, History, International Studies, and Languages and Culture Studies. In addition to fostering language skills, the broad base of knowledge about the Arab world and culture topics that students acquire in this minor positions them to work for U.S. federal and non-federal agencies. Career possibilities include:

  • Banking and Finance
  • Translation & Interpretation
  • Foreign Service
  • Consulting
  • Education
  • Intelligence
  • Business
  • Journalism

The Minor in Arabic Studies requires a total of 20 credit hours of coursework. 14 credit hours come from four Language Core Courses with their corresponding labs, two Advanced Language Courses and another 6 credit hours come from Elective Topics Courses in Arabic Language, Literature, and Culture.

For more information see the description of the Minor in Arabic Studies or contact your advisor, Professor Noha Ghali.

Students benefit from scholarship opportunities to study Arabic abroad at little or no cost. The Critical Language Scholarship Program, Arabic Overseas Language Flagship Program, and the National Security Education Program’s Boren Awards each provide focused, immersive experiences that enable you to reach much higher levels of linguistic and cultural proficiency than is achievable through U.S.-based study alone.

In addition, Professor Noha Ghali offers a Spring Break study abroad course which takes students to Egypt.

For more information on Study Abroad Opportunities visit the Office of Education Abroad and find Your Program.

The Arabic program works to provide support for cultural events that create a rich and inclusive learning environment. Cultural events foster a welcoming campus atmosphere that encourages learning about the history and culture of arab speaking countries.

Arabic Calligraphy Workshop

On October 6, Professor Muhammad Habib, an Assistant Teaching Professor at Georgetown University, led a workshop for more than 50 UNC Charlotte students and faculty. They explored the art of calligraphy as it appears in Arabic language and culture during a workshop. The workshop represented the first among other initiatives to promote Arabic language and culture throughout the UNC Charlotte community. More than 50 students, faculty, and staff attended the hands-on workshop during which Professor Habib explained the history and art of Arabic Calligraphy while also demonstrating his expertise. During the demonstration, he used chalk on a chalkboard to emphasize broad and narrow lines. In the latter segment of the workshop, participants practiced writing their names with calligraphy pens on paper. Students explained that the workshop presented a more artistic form of Arabic script not seen in everyday writing and they noted that the experience opened their thoughts about Arabic language and culture.

Arabic Representing at the Annual UNC Charlotte International Festival

The annual UNC Charlotte International Festival is centered around booths arranged in colorful marketplace style representing the cultures of over 50 nations. The booths are staffed by UNC Charlotte international students and members of Charlotte’s international community and feature art, crafts and costumes from each participating country. Many booths offer international food for sale. Throughout the day the music and dance of a variety of nations are presented on indoor and outdoor stages. In addition, the International Festival, which is family-oriented, offers a number of elements such as mimes and face painting designed especially for children. The Arabic world is well represented with booths for Syria, Egypt, Iraq, Saudi Arabia and many other Arabic countries.

Arabic Film Club

The Arabic Film Club meets once a week to watch films from various Arab countries. The club goals are to create a learning opportunity through entertainment, raise awareness of the different cultures in the Arab world, encourage students to develop a different perception of the Arab culture away from the stereotypes in mass media. Topics such as Arabness, Arab identity, citizenship, class, gender bias, and sense of belonging are discussed through the films presented. All the screened films are with English subtitles.

Arabic Conversation Club

The Arabic Conversation Club meets once a week to offer students an opportunity to polish their Arabic speaking skills around topics such as food, colors, traditions, and festivals. Both heritage speakers and Arabic learners meet to get engaged in conversations that would help both groups to achieve high levels of fluency. Students enjoy the advantage of learning Arabic in a friendly environment of small class size and individualized attention.

Arabic Calligraphy Club

The Arabic Calligraphy Club meets regularly to allow students to practice the art of calligraphy.

For a full list of Arabic Studies graduates, click here.

Featured Alumni

Sidra Marotti

Sidrah Marotti graduated in May 2020 with a double Major in International Studies and Political Science as well as Minors in Arabic and Urban Studies Marotti is part of the Arabic program at UNC Charlotte and she was also the head of the Arabic Film Club. She has a passion for foreign cultures, especially the Arab world. She worked with the Fruitful Friends program through Refugee Support Services; this program pairs refugee families from all over the world with an American friend in order to help them acclimate to American culture. Marotti was paired with a Syrian family, which served as an excellent exchange of language and culture. She had the opportunity to practice her Arabic and experience Syrian cuisine and customs, while also providing support to a community that faces a large amount of discrimination here in North Carolina. Marotti completed an year-long exchange program through ISEP (International Student Exchange Program), where she continued her studies of political science and international studies, as well as Arabic language and culture at Al Akhawayn University in Ifrane, Morocco. After graduating in May 2020, Marotti began work as a Field Organizer for the Human Rights Campaign.

Name Job Title Email
Noha Ghali Associate Teaching Professor & Coordinator of Arabic Studies
Liliane Toss Instructor of Arabic

Explore Past Events and News about the Arabic Studies Program