Transferring Advanced Learners of Arabic as a Foreign Language to The Superior Level
This poster session focuses on describing the one-year full immersion program offered by the American University in Cairo at the Center for Advanced Arabic Study in Cairo (CAASIC). The overall objective is the development of the students’ overall level of Arabic proficiency in order to allow them to use the language as a communication and research tool for continued graduate and post-graduate study and careers. In addition, the program aims to provide specialized language training in a wide variety of cultural, social and intellectual contexts. Upon completion of the full year, program fellows reach a level of proficiency ranging between Advanced high - Superior and Distinguished on the ACTFL rating or equivalent. These results indicate that the students become sufficiently competent in Arabic to participate with Egyptians and Arabs in many activities and conversations. The session includes detailed description of the program starting from the application and the selection process and takes the learner through both the philosophy of the program and the application. An over view of the summer session and its focus on Cairo with its Cairo course (20 class hours per week) readings, visits and meeting with authors to writing a comparative analysis about the depiction in Cairo in works and field visits. Focus on culture is a key during the summer, especially. Then moves to the Fall semester with its focus on vocabulary building and the main language learning skills, Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking through Social Issues in Egypt and the Middle East courses. The courses are geared toward using the Arabic language with its vernacular when needed. So students get to practice when to use colloquial and when not to, according to the social situation and according to the audience. Then ending by the Spring semester when learners are ready for broader content courses at the University. They get to select the courses they think will be of help for their research and/or work. They also get the chance to take a Community Based Learning (CBL) course where they go out of the boarders of the classrooms and serve the community in Cairo while learning more of language and culture.
Keywords - Cairo – Content Full-year program – Community Based Learning – Vernacular – Classic – Integration of skills -