The Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Rothberg International School

Department of Undergraduate Studies

Spring Semester 2017


Course 48233: Colloquial Arabic (Beginners)

Mr. Tzachi Ganor


Office Hours: By Appointment


Course Description

During the course students will learn the conjugation of the verbs, declension of the nouns and the prepositions and will acquire a large vocabulary from different fields of daily life. Attention will be given to listening comprehension and to active use of the spoken dialect. The students will also improve their listening and comprehension skills by following and engaging with short, up-to-date and easy to digest videos of online TV shows and entertainment programs as well as songs. The varied media content in CA is accompanied with vocabulary, transcripts and full translation.


A selective list of topics:

- Acquaintance, self-presentation and greetings

- Proverbs and other expressions

- Family and kinship terminology

- Languages and nationalities

- Numbers

- Colors


Course Requirements

Presence in class and active participation are two main conditions for success in this course. This is not a theoretical course and in order to learn how to speak Arabic one must be present and participate. Another crucial dimension is the willingness of students to work seriously at home between lessons; without work at home the above mentioned goals cannot be reached.

Breakdown of marks:

1. Quizzes, active participation, presence and assignments preparation – 40%

2. Midterm exam– 20% (written exam 10% and group presentation 10%)

3. Final exam – 40% (written exam 20% and group presentation 20%)




Bibliography (Next to each item appears its place in the Rothberg Library)

The teaching will be based on Yohanan Elihay’s, Speaking Arabic, books I and II, and on the two CD’s accompanying these books.

1-      Yohanan Elihay, Speaking Arabic (books)                             492.7 E42

2-      Yohanan Elihay, Speaking Arabic (CD)                                             492.7 E42

3-      Yohanan Elihay, The Olive Tree Dictionary                          DIC. A:E E426

Additional book and dictionary:

4-      Omar Othman, Let’s Speak Arabic                                         492.7 O87

5-      Omar Othman and Thomas Neu: Qaamuus ilQuds.

A Dictionary of the Spoken Arabic of Jerusalem                    DIC. E:A O87