The department of Arab and Islamic Civilizations provides a multi-disciplinary framework for the study of the history and culture of the Middle East since the rise of Islam. It seeks to explain the thought, movements, processes, institutions and identities of Arab-Islamic civilization. These include but are not limited to aesthetic and intellectual production, political and religious thought, cross-cultural interaction, commerce and economic relations, government, and social, political and religious loyalties. The study and appreciation of these fields forms an important part of the university’s mission to give students greater awareness and appreciation of the heritage of the Middle East.
Bachelor of Arts
The objective of the Bachelor of Arts is to develop a broad awareness of Arab-Islamic civilization and to develop in students the ability to examine critically the different aesthetic, intellectual and cultural components of this civilization. Each student is required to fulfill Arabic language requirements and take a common core of courses from Arabic Literature, Islamic Studies, Middle Eastern History and Islamic Art and Architecture. Students should find opportunities in any line of work where knowledge of Middle Eastern culture or analytical and communication skills are important.
A total of 120 credits is required for the degree in Arabic Studies.
Students must demonstrate their proficiency in Arabic at the advanced level, either by completing ALNG 312 or its equivalent, or by taking a proficiency test, or by holding the Thanawiya ‘Amma.Students must reach this level of proficiency before their senior year. The department may give permission for deferral until the senior year in exceptional cases. However, students should note that advanced-level proficiency is a prerequisite for enrollment in certain Arabic literature courses, as described below. Students who are required to take Arabic language proficiency courses may use a maximum of 15 hours of their elective credits to take language courses in Intermediate or Advanced Arabic. Elementary Arabic courses may not be taken for credit.
Students should have the Thanawiya ‘Amma certificate, evidence of advanced-level proficiency or consent of instructor before enrolling in any Arabic literature course which is taught in Arabic, or in ARIC 317 and 417, for which the readings are in Arabic.
Core Curriculum (34-46 credits)
ARIC majors must fulfill their Core Curriculum Arab History and Arabic Literature requirements by taking any 300-level Arabic literature course and any Middle Eastern history course from the core curriculum list other than ARIC 343. They should take the introductory 200-level courses required by their major before fulfilling their Core Curriculum requirements.
Concentration requirements (48 credits)
All students must take 24 credit hours as follows:
Arabic literature (6 credits)
Middle Eastern history (6 credits)
Islamic Studies (6 credits)
Islamic Art and Architecture (6 credits)
Each student must take another 24 credits of ARIC courses, chosen with the help of the advisor. These must include two additional 400-level courses.
Students may, if they wish, take a specialization in Middle Eastern History or in Arabic Literature.
Specialization in Middle Eastern History
Students who wish to specialize in this field must take a minimum of 18 of these 24 credits in Middle Eastern history, medieval and modern. These must include two 400-level courses, and at least one course on modern Middle Eastern history. Students may choose from among the following courses offered by the Department of Arab and Islamic Civilizations (ARIC) and by the Department of History (HIST):
Specialization in Arabic Literature
Students who wish to specialize in this field must take a minimum of 18 of these 24 credits in Arabic literature, chosen from the list below. It is expected that these courses will be taken in Arabic. However, a student may take up to two Arabic literature courses taught in English, on condition that he/she reads the assigned texts in Arabic. In such cases, the course will be registered for that student under the rubric ARIC 317 or 417, Special Studies in Arabic Texts, as appropriate.
Electives (26 - 38 credits)
Depending on the number of credits needed to complete the 20 credits, the student is strongly advised to use some of their electives to take a suitable minor or minors. As stated above, he/she may use up to 15 credit hours to satisfy Arabic language requirements for the ARIC degree.
Specialization in Islamic Art and Architecture
In addition to the Islamic Art and Architecture courses (ARIC 206 and ARIC 270) stipulated in the Arabic Studies core requirements, the students must take an additional 8 courses (24 credit hours), of which two must be of the 400-level, from among the following:
7 courses (21 credit hours) from among the following courses:
In addition to the core and specialization requirements an additional 26-38 credit hours can be devoted to electives.