101 Introduction to the Arabic Language by dov51579


									Johns Hopkins University
School of Advanced International Studies
Arabic Language Program

Course Syllabus*[1]

                                 Novice Arabic, 901-710 sections


Instructor: Catherine Calhoun      email: cc3calhoun@yahoo.com Phone: (202) 413-2936

Section 1 meets at Rome ( R102 )       Tu. Wed. Th. Fri. from 10:45-12:15

                                Office Hours: TBA

Only registered students can attend class.

Instructional Materials:

1- Wightwick, Jane, Gaafar Mahmoud: Mastering Arabic, 3rd edition, New York: Hippocrene
Books, 1996.

2- “Tell Me More”, An Interactive Computer Program for Arabic. Available at MMC, 3rd floor,
Rome Building, SAIS. The software is on machines 1, 2, and 3.

Course Description:

This is a beginning Arabic course for students who have no background in Arabic. This course
builds up skills of Modern Standard Arabic. In addition to the focus on pronouncing the sounds
and writing the letters, it enables the students to meet some communication needs in basic daily
life situations consistent with a novice level of proficiency. The class develops the four skills:
listening, speaking, reading and writing. The course also includes some basic issues of Arabic

Course Objectives:
This course introduces the Arabic alphabet, which is non-Roman, in both its oral and written
forms. Students will start developing their vocabulary via specific structures presented in the
textbook. They will learning simple grammatical structures and will gradually listen to authentic
materials that come with the textbook, newspapers and other instructional materials. Most of the
exercises and the activities are task-based and student-centered:

      Fill out simple forms
      Read signs, titles, and ads.
      Name places, persons, objects
      Express likes and dislikes
      Use skimming and scanning techniques to find missing data on familiar topics
      Describe house, rooms, buildings, other things in simple sentences, etc

By the end of the course students would be able to reach the outcomes and the objectives
required by ACTFL- Proficiency Guidelines as show below.

      Listening: A. Students would be able to understand short, learned utterances, sentence-

                   Length utterances and short paragraphs on familiar topics.

       B. Students would be able to comprehend words and phrases from

          Simple questions, statements, high-frequency commands, and

          Courtesy formulae. May require repetition, rephrasing, slowed

           rate of speech for comprehension.

      Speaking:       A. Students would be able to communicate by using learned

                       utterances. Ask & answer questions, etc.

                       B. Students would be able to ask questions or make statements

                           Involving learned materials rather than personalized ones.

                           Vocabulary centers around basic objects, places, common

                           kinship terms. Errors are frequent and students might not be

                           easily understood.

      Reading:        A. Students would be able to read learned words and standardized

                       phrases, messages, and expressions such as schedules,

                       timetables, maps, and signs, and short paragraphs on familiar topics.

      Writing:        A. Students would be able to write simple sentences, fixed expressions

                       limited memorized materials. They can write names, numbers,

                       dates, nationality, and simple autobiographical information. Simple
                       paragraphs on familiar topics.

                        B. They can write all the symbols in an alphabetic or syllabic

                              system. Spelling and representation of symbols may be

                              partially correct.


1.    Active participation:            20 %

2.    (2) Written Exams                 40 % (20 each)

3.    (1) Oral Exam                    40 %

Active Class Participation

Students should participate in the classroom activities, which targets understanding and language
production. These activities should be done on frequent basis. This requires from the students to
come prepared to participate. Active participation entails the following:

(a) Class attendance. Class attendance is obligatory. Students are allowed to miss only four
hours of class for medical or emergency reasons. Teachers should be notified within 24 hours.

(b) Homework assignments: Students are expected to submit their assignments on time. Late
assignments will be corrected but will have a negative impact in your grade as shown in
Appendix A.

     The students’ overall class participation will be graded according to the rating criteria in
                                            Appendix A.

                                      The written and oral exams

(A) The written exams

They will test your mastery of vocabulary and grammar points. They also include reading,
writing and listening tasks to assess the effective use of language in context. A typical exam
contains 4 sections:

Listening Section: Students will listen to an audio or video clip followed by general

                      comprehension questions.

Grammar Section: The understanding of grammar is tested through multiple choice or sentence
                     completion tasks.

Reading Section:    Reading comprehension will be test by short texts to check the general

                     understanding of the text.

Written Section:   At this level, students will be write 10 words as a dictation.

(A) The Oral exam

By the end of the course, you will meet with your instructor for an individual oral interview to
assess your overall ability to speak Arabic. The week(s) for the oral exam are shown on the
calendar of activities.

The oral grade is based on 4 criteria:

(1) Pronunciation comprehensibility: refers to the clarity of the sounds and other phonetic
features such as (Shadah , Tanween, etc.) Native-like speech is not expected.

(2) Vocabulary: refers to the knowledge of the words and phrases needed to carry out the
conversation or situation.

(3) Structure: refers to the knowledge of forms and structure needed to carry out the
conversation or situation. The structure should be correct and comprehensible.

(4) Fluency: refers to the easy and ready flow of words.

The scoring will be based on Appendix B. (The Scoring Scheme for Oral Grade)


Grading Scale

      100-95            A                  Pass
       94-90            A-                 Pass
       89-87            B+                 Pass
       86-83            B                  Pass
       82-80            B-                 Pass
       79-75            C+                 Fail
    74 & below           F                 Fail
Tips for Success

·     Remember: The teacher facilitates the work and only you can do the work.
·     Active participation in classroom activities requires your presence, and prior preparation.
You are allowed to miss only 4 classes per semester. If you miss any extra class, one point per
class will be deducted from your final grade.

·     Excused absences should be properly documented. In cases of emergencies, students
should present their documents on the next day of return to class. The documents must be on a
doctor’s official stationary and be signed by the doctor. The excuse does not need to contain a
description of the illness or medical treatment.

·      To be in good shape, at least an hour of outside classroom work is needed for every hour
of classroom instruction.

·     Be on time; turn off all phones. No pets in class.

·     Drinks are OK but no foods are allowed (including chewing gum)

                              Calendar of Activities and Assignments

Week              Activity                    Assignments
Week 1                       Chapter 1        None

Begins 30/1/07       Mastering Arabic
Week 2            Chapter 2 and 3             Pg 15, ex 3          Pg 20, ex 7

Begins 6/2/07                                 Pg 28, ex 4          Pg 32, ex 7
Week 3            Chapter 4 and 5             Pg 39, ex 23         Pg 41, ex 3

Begins 13/2/07                                Pg 51, ex 2          Pg 56, ex 6
Week 4            Chapter 6 and 7             Pg 64-5, ex 1 &2     Pg 70-71, ex 6

Begins 20/2/07                                Pg 83, ex 3          Pg 86, ex 5
Week 5            Chapter 8 and 9             Pg 92, ex 4          Pg 97, ex 6

Begins 27/2/07                                Pg 109, ex 7         Pg 111, ex 10
Week 6            Chapter 10 and 11           Pg 116, ex 1         Pg 125, ex 8

Begins 6/3/07                                 Pg 135, ex 3         Pg 139 ex 6
Week 7            Spring Break

Begins 13/3/07
Week 8            Review and Exam             Written Exam 22 March, in class.

Begins 20/3/07                                Oral Exam: 23 March, by appointment
Week 9            Chapter 12 and 13           Pg 152-3 ex 3    Pg 159, ex 6
Begins 27/3/07                               Pg 170, ex 3         Pg 175, ex 6
Week 10          Chapter 14 and 15           Pg 182, ex 2        Pg 185, ex 6

Begins 4/4/07                                Pg 188, ex 7        Pg 199, ex 4

                                             Pg 205, ex 10
Week 11          Chapter 16 and 17           Pg 215, ex 4        Pg 221, ex 7 & 8

Begins 10/4/07                               Pg 250, ex 4        Pg 253, ex 5
Week 12          Chapter18 and 19            Pg 245, ex 1        Pg 149, ex 3

Begins 17/4/07                               Pg 257, ex 8          Pg 263, ex 2

                                             Pg 270
Week 13          Review and the Final        Written Exam: 25 April, in class.

Begins 24/4/07                               Oral Exam: 26 & 27 April by appointment

NB: In addition to these specific written assignments, students who want to excel in Arabic
should do the following on a daily basis:

      Review what was covered after each class, particularly new grammatical structures
       and/or usages, to make sure you fully understand how and when to use them.
      Make flash cards—with the Arabic word on one side of the card and its equivalent in
       English on the other—for each new vocabulary word introduced either in the course texts
       or in class activities and discussions.
      Review flash cards everyday, sometimes starting with the Arabic side first and sometimes
       with the English side first. Set aside the words you do not know and review these words
       two more times in the same day.
      Ask questions in class whenever you need additional explanation to clarify new structures
       and how or when to use them.
      Practice speaking Arabic as much as possible, especially when you interact with your
       teacher and your classmates outside the class!
Appendix A

                        Assessment criteria for Active Class Preparation

Grade   Description
A       q    The student does not have unjustified absences in the class.

        q    He submits all assignments and exams on time with 90% accuracy.

        q    He takes an active role in class discussions.

        q    His class presentations are carefully thought out and prepared.
B       q    The student has a maximum of 1 unjustified absence in the class.

        q    He submits all her assignments on time with 85% accuracy.

        q    He takes an active role in class discussions.

        q    His class presentations are carefully thought out and prepared.
C       q    The student has a maximum of 2 unjustified absences in the class.

        q    He has failed to submit a maximum of 2 assignments on time.

        q    He submits her assignments with 80% accuracy.

        q    He participates in class when called, but does not take an active role in class

        q    His class presentations are carefully thought out and prepared.
D       q    The student has a maximum of 3 unjustified absences in the class.

        q    He has failed to submit a maximum of 3 assignments on time.

        q    He submits her assignments with 75% accuracy.

        q    He participates in class when called, but does not take and active role in class

        q    His class presentations are carefully thought out and prepared.
F       q    The student has more than 3 unjustified absences.

        q    He has failed to submit a maximum of 3 assignments on time.


SUB-LEVEL      PERFORMANCE DESCRIPTOR                                         Picture Topic

                                                                              50%    50%
Novice Mid     1    Appears challenged by task

               2    Cannot fulfill the speech function

               3    Uses phrases in languages other than Spanish to respond

               4    Frequent use of set phrases

               5    Unintelligible utterances
Novice High    1    Creates at the sentence level, but inconsistently.

               2    Uses English words

               3    Uses English question intonation

               4    Uses Occasional non-responses

               5    Uses very limited vocabulary
Intermediate   1    Shows ability to form a variety of simple questions

Low            2     Lacks ability to form more complex questions:

                   (What would you like to do in your free time?)

               3    Speaks at sentence level, although hesitant.

               4    An occasional use of English words

               5    Reliance on standard question formation, with little or

                    No variety in verbs or syntax
Intermediate   1    Speaker asks many questions and they are well-formed

Mid            2    Speaks at sentence level without much hesitation

               3    Context is provided when needed

               n    Displays a variety of vocabulary and syntax
               4       Provides occasional commentary:

                     (I like football better than other games.)
Above          1       No miscommunication
               2       Elaboration
               3       Attempts to speak at paragraph-level discourse

               4       Correct Spanish question intonation and varied question


               5       Connective devices and appropriate vocabulary

                                                              FINAL SCORE
50 points          All the characteristics of the NH profile + 2 characteristics of the IL profile
45 points          All the characteristics of the NH profile + 1 characteristic of the IL profile
40 points          All the characteristics of the NH profile
30                 3 characteristics of NH profile + 1 characteristic of lower levels
25                 3 or fewer characteristics of NH profile + 2 or more characteristics of lower

                                       The Final Grade sheet

Novice - Low (901-710)                                         Instructor: Catherine Calhoun

      Name                     Class Participation Written   Written       Oral     Total
                                                             Exam (2)      Exam
                                                  Exam (2)                          100
                               20 %               20 %     20 %            40 %     100%

Spring 2007                                                   Signature:

To top