Study Arabic in Beirut, Lebanon

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SINARC offers courses in the Arabic language  at various levels of proficiency. Each level provides a number of hours per week of intensive classroom instruction, including Lebanese dialect. Formal language instruction is enriched by immersion in an authentic cultural context. Cultural activities include weekly lectures on topics related to Arab and Lebanese politics, history and society. In addition, students partake in a series of excursions to historical, cultural and tourist sites throughout Lebanon.

LAU is one of the top institutions of higher education and research in Lebanon and the region and is accredited by the New England Commission for Higher Education (NECHE). As such, upon successfully completing the SINARC program, you will receive an official LAU transcript that makes your credits transferrable to most institutions of higher education across the globe as per the following:

15-week program
15 credits
15-week program
15 credits
6-week program
8 credits
14-week program
14 credits

One-on-one tutorials are also available for the diplomatic corps

Travel, visa and transportation 

Arrival

Students are advised to arrive in Lebanon two or three days prior to the beginning of the program.

Transportation

Transportation for arrival and departure between Beirut International Airport and LAU-Beirut is provided free of charge to SINARC students residing in LAU dorms.

Visa

  • Non-Lebanese citizens are required to obtain a three-month tourist visa.
  • US citizens and most European citizens can obtain visas at the Beirut International Airport for $35 or LBP 50,000 (cash only).
  • Visas can also be obtained in advance through the Lebanese consulates in the countries of origin. Citizens of countries other than the U.S. should check with their embassies for information concerning visas to Lebanon.

Accommodation

The program takes place on the LAU Beirut campus. Students who request accommodation are housed in air-conditioned, double-occupancy rooms. Single occupancy is available for an extra fee and is dependent on availability. One set of linens, including two towels and a set of sheets are provided. Students needing additional sheets and/or those who prefer a more frequent laundering schedule should plan to pack extras and make use of the laundry facilities located in the dormitories. Students need to pack a beach towel. Prices for lodging differ depending on the semester. 

Campus Facilities 

SINARC students are issued student ID cards during the first week of classes. This allows them full access to all campus facilities, including the library, computer labs, language lab and recreational facilities (indoor Olympic-size swimming pool, indoor basketball court, tennis courts and gym). SINARC students are assigned email accounts and have access to free WIFI throughout the program. All dorm rooms are equipped with WIFI, and student lounges have computer stations available, free of charge for dorm residents. Also, limited kitchen facilities are located in the dorms.

Excursions 

SINARC organizes excursions to historical and tourist sites in Lebanon, such as the Jeita Grotto; the Arab and Roman ruins in Baalbek, Byblos, Anjar, Tyre, Sidon and Tripoli; the Cedars of Lebanon; the historical palaces in Beiteddine and Deir al-Qamar ;as well as a tour of South Lebanon.

Excursion fees is included in the student association fee for the fall and spring terms, as for the summer term a specific excursion fee is applicable. Cultural trips to Syria are now on hold due to the political situation.

Instructors

SINARC’s instructors are native Arabic speakers with solid educational credentials ranging from bachelor’s to PhD degrees. Combined with extensive, often decades-long-teaching experience. Small-sized classes ensure that you receive plenty of individual attention in the classroom. 

Sara Chahine Ammar holds an MA from the Lebanese University’s School of Pedagogy for teaching philosophy and psychology in high schools. She taught Arabic for native and non-native speakers at College Protestant Français since 1975 at all levels, and she was the coordinator of the Department of Arabic there. She joined SINARC in 2005 and has taught Modern Standard Arabic at various levels for non-native speakers.

Narmeen El-Horr holds an MA in Arabic Language and Literature from the American University of Beirut, completing a thesis on trauma in modern autobiography. She joined the University of Notre Dame as an assistant teaching professor of Arabic in 2017, after having taught Arabic language and literature at AUB since 2015 and Arabic for non-native speakers at the CAMES summer program since 2012. She also worked at AUB’s Issam Fares Institute for Public Policy and International Affairs as COMMUNICATION COORDINATOR. Her main areas of interest include Arab modernism, the Arabic novel, and trauma and literature. She recently joined SINARC, where she is going to teach Arabic language and culture for non-native speakers.

Hicham Kharroub has a BS from the American University of Beirut and a master of arts from LAU. He is currently a doctoral candidate at the Institut de Letters Orientales at Saint Joseph University. He has taught Arabic as a second language since 2011, formerly at the Center for Arab and Middle Eastern Studies and currently at SINARC. His areas of interest include comparative literature, translation studies and modern Arabic poetry. His current dissertation is on literary, social and political criticism in the works of Nizar Qabbani.

Khalil Makari holds a BA in Political Science from Ithaca College and joined the Graduate Program at NYU, where he studied Modern History of the Middle East and taught Arabic for non-native speakers for several years. He taught Arabic for five years at SINARC starting in 1997. He developed a grade 6-10 history curriculum and coordinated with a team of authors and history editors to publish a series of grade 6-10 world history books in Arabic for an international school in Qatar (AIA- Arab International Academy). He re-joined SINARC this year as the program coordinator.

Laure Obeid received her BA from LAU in Teaching Arabic as a Foreign Language. In addition to her position as  an Arabic language teacher at the International College (IC) in Beirut, she continues to teach Arabic (both classical and colloquial) to foreigners at SINARC.

Additional highly qualified faculty and assistants trained in total-immersion oral-proficiency methodology are recruited from within Lebanon and the best Arabic programs around the world.