Arabic Language Studies

Why Study Arabic in Jerusalem?

  • Study with Arabic-speaking teachers in Israel, where Arabic is an official national language.
  • Rapidly acquire or improve your Arabic reading, writing, and speaking skills.
  • Start at the beginner, intermediate, or advanced level.
  • Take up to 15 credits of Arabic language courses per semester
  • Practice your Arabic with local students

Meet the Arabic instructors!

Whether you are an absolute beginner or an advanced Arabic language student, our intensive approach to language studies promises to quickly advance your skills. With options ranging from 6 – 20 credits (inclusive of a pre-semester Foundations course) and opportunities to interact with the local Arab population, you will make giant strides towards full proficiency in both Modern Standard Arabic and Spoken Levantine dialect.
Take advantage of our extensive course offerings in Middle East and Islamic Studies to complement your knowledge of the history and culture of the Arab world.

The Arabic Language Program offers you a holistic approach to language acquisition: read and listen to local media, converse with native speakers, and become acquainted with the cultural and historical context of the region. Courses in Modern Standard Arabic and Spoken Levantine dialect are taught at the beginners, intermediate and advanced levels. Beginners will take the pre-semester course Foundations of Modern Standard Arabic.

Program Structure & Credits

Pre-Semester Beginners Course

If you are an absolute beginner wishing to study Arabic during the Fall semester or year, you will participate in Foundations of Modern Standard Arabic (5 credits, 100 academic hours). After passing this course, you may continue with your studies in the intermediate level of MSA Arabic for the fall semester or year. (Spring semester does not offer the pre-semester course.)

Students taking this course are exempt from the pre-semester Hebrew Ulpan.

Autumn Semester

Modern Standard Arabic (Studies based on Al-Kitaab 3rd edition textbooks)

  • Intermediate (12 credits)
  • Advanced (3 credits) – Independent Study

Amia (Spoken dialect)

  • Absolute Beginners (3 credits)
  • Beginners Plus (3 credits) – Independent Study
  • Intermediate (3 credits) – Independent Study

Spring Semester

Modern Standard Arabic (Studies based on Al-Kitaab 3rd edition textbooks)

  • Beginners (3 credits) – Independent Study
  • Intermediate (3 credits) – Independent Study
  • Advanced (12 credits)

Amia (Spoken dialect)

  • Absolute Beginners (3 credits)
  • Beginners Plus (3 credits) –  Independent Study
  • Intermediate (3 credits)
  • Advanced (3 credits) –  Independent Study

Modern Standard Arabic Prerequisites

The intermediate course is designed for students who have already taken two semesters of Modern Standard Arabic or, alternatively, have taken the pre-semester Foundations of Modern Standard Arabic course.

The advanced course requires at least four semesters of previous Arabic study.

Review our course catalog for Middle East and Islamic Studies courses and get to know HebrewU’s RIS faculty members.

You’ll be invited to participate in a wide array of trips, tours, and activities offered by the Office of Student Life, including a tour of the Old City, a trip to the Dead Sea, and festivals that are held throughout the year. Build your own unique impressions and memories of Jerusalem and Israel. You’ll live with other international, Israeli, and Arab students, giving you a chance to form new friendships and practice your language skills. A team of multilingual Israeli students (madrichim), some of whom speak Arabic, are also here to help you adjust to your new surroundings and give you tips on things to do. Learn more about student life.

While studying at HebrewU, you’ll experience Jerusalem’s incredible mosaic of cultures, foods, religions, and peoples. It’s an exciting place where Arab and Jewish students study, work, and relax together. In the same day, you can stroll through a lively street market or spend an evening with friends at a trendy nightclub.

Jerusalem is holy to Muslims, Jews, and Christians. It is the site of some of the most sacred institutions of Islam. Almost a third of the city’s population are native Arabic speakers, and Arabic is a national language here. Your studies will be enriched by this lively culture, both at HebrewU and in the city. Develop friendships with local Arab and Israeli peers and build new memories. Discover firsthand Jerusalem’s rich history, as well as its vibrant and innovative culture. Learn more about Jerusalem and start planning your adventure.

Apply by: On a Rolling Admissions Basis (year and autumn semester); November 30 (spring semester)

Program length: Semester or year

View our Academic Calendar for registration dates and more.

For financial information, see Tuition & Fees.


A limited number of scholarships, based on demonstrated need or merit, are available. To apply, follow the procedure required by your local office.

In order to apply, you must have already completed at least 28 credits from an accredited college or university. Your cumulative GPA should be a minimum of 3.0 (B) or equivalent. In addition, you will be required to take an Arabic placement exam to ascertain your current skill level.

English Language Requirement

If you are from a non-English-speaking country and have not previously studied at an institution of higher education where the language of instruction is English, you are required to take an English proficiency test. A minimum TOEFL score of 89 on the internet-based test is required. HebrewU’s school code for TOEFL is 0206. Equivalent Cambridge or IELTS scores are also acceptable.


We’re pleased you’re applying to join us in Jerusalem. See our application guidelines or apply online now. Please note on your USAP application that you are interested in taking Arabic Language courses.


Questions? We’d love to hear from you.

Division of Undergraduate Studies
Rothberg International School
The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Boyar Building, Room 426
Jerusalem, Israel 9190501
Tel.: +972 2 588 1628 or +972 2 588 2610
Fax: +972 2 588 2363

Fast Facts


Arabic Language Programs

Language of Instruction:



Semester or year

Program Dates:

Fall Pre-Semester (September 5-30, 2024) / Fall Semester (October 29, 2024 – February 2, 2025)

Spring Semester (March 20 – July 4)


28+ credits; minimum 3.0 (B) GPA

Application Deadline:

Rolling Admissions (year and autumn)
November 15 (spring)

Internship Possibility:


Cost (includes housing):

For financial information, see Tuition & Fees.

Take a look at our pages for prospects, students, faculty and staff, alumni, and parents – or contact us!

TrackSAT ACT Psychometric Test
(General or QE)
Business & English1310 28629
Business & Liberal Arts131028629
English & Liberal Arts102019516
Pre-Semester Program: “Encountering Jerusalem”
Practical Hebrew Beginners 4 credits
Israeli Society3 credits
Pre-Semester Program: “Encountering Jerusalem”
Practical Hebrew Beginners4 credits
Modern Standard Arabic Beginners 5 credits
Jerusalem: A Journey Through Time and Space3 credits
Pre-Semester Program: “Encountering Jerusalem”
Practical Hebrew Beginners4 credits
Modern Standard Arabic Beginners 5 credits
Jerusalem: A Journey Through Time and Space3 credits
Pre-Semester Program: “Encountering Jerusalem”
Practical Hebrew Beginners 4 credits
Israeli Society3 credits