Academic Arabic Preparatory Program

The Academic Arabic Program is a one-year program offered by Usul Academy that consists of three 11-week terms that are taught online, in addition to a 4-week intensive Arabic program live in Istanbul.  Students attend 9 hours of live classes per week, in addition to 9-16 hours of study time outside of class. Most classes take place on Saturday and Sunday, with an additional short class during the week.

Students who apply to the Honors Program: BA in Comparative Islamic Studies and do not pass the Arabic proficiency assessment will be required to complete this program in order to be admitted to the Foundations year of the Honors Program. Students can also apply separately to this program and will be considered non-matriculated students at Usul Academy.


Program Details

This program benefits from more than twenty years of collaborative knowledge and experience from experts in the development of Arabic programs for non-native speakers, such as: Qasid , İSAR, İSM, EDEP and Al-Madina Institute.

The program is based on the following principles:

  • A focus on academic Arabic. The student is directed towards developing a capacity for engaging with classical and contemporary Arabic texts, including reading, writing and oral communication.
  • A focus on key language skills. We sometimes rely on the method of translation and grammar while reading classical texts, in which the student learns to understand the written text rather than simply learn verbal communication.
  • An emphasis on reading and analytical skills.
  • Organizing levels of competency according to the criteria of ACTFL. 
  • A commitment to selecting the highest caliber of teachers. All of our faculty members are experts who have years of experience teaching Arabic in international institutions such as: Qasid, İSAR, İSM, EDEP and Al-Madina Institute.
  • A faculty body with a shared vision and diverse teaching styles. The exposure to a diverse faculty only enriches the student’s experience by offering a range of different teaching methods. Our teaching philosophy is: “One vision but diverse personalities.”

The goals of the program are:

  • For students to reach the minimum advanced level according to the ACTFL standards, in terms of text length, linguistic function and the extent of errors made. Students follow the ACTFL assigned topics, which are academic topics rather than topics from everyday life.
  • For students to be capable of reading original academic texts in a progressive manner and engaging with these texts through reading, writing, speaking, and listening. Original academic texts include: tafsīr texts, interpretations of adīth, biographies, literary texts and contemporary academic works.
  • For students to achieve rigorous academic competency through conducting a research project on a topic of interest under faculty supervision to be presented at a student-faculty symposium.




Textbook (Chapters)

ACTFL Standard

Term I



First (entire)

Second (1-4)


Term II



Second (5-6)

Third (1-4)


Term III



Third (4-6)

Fourth (1-4)


Istanbul Summer Term



Fifth (entire)

Academic and Classical Texts


Academic arabic calendar