With fourteen foreign languages taught at USC, why should you choose Arabic?

    -Arabic is an official language of the United Nations; with 420 million native speakers, Arabic is the 5th most common language in the world

    -Gain critical language skills applicable in 22 countries and participate in the active economic growth of the Arab world

    -Work in a variety of fields such as journalism, business, education, finance and banking, translation, foreign service, and so much more

    Arabic provides opportunities for research and communication from NW Africa to Iraq and the Persian Gulf and beyond.


    Persian has been one of the most important languages of Asia for more than a thousand years.

    -The official language of Iran and Tajikistan

    -One of the two official languages of Afghanistan

    -The language of nearly 100 million native speakers

    -A major literary language of India for centuries

    -A vehicle for poetry, philosophy, the sciences, and Islamic literature

    Study Persian at USC and communicate with Persian speakers on their own terms. Understand modern Iran and its neighbors with an insider’s perspective. Get direct access to some of the world’s greatest and most influential literature.

    Placement Exams

    The Language Center offers placement exams every semester. Please book your appointment here.

    Don’t miss out on learning Arabic or Persian in our top-ranked programs!

    Study Abroad

    Applications for Fall 2023 will open in December and will be due in Feebruary 2023!

    Please click here for syllabi. Instructions to apply are found here. See the 3 locations below:

    Amman, Jordan (AMIDEAST)

    Amman, Jordan, (CIEE)

    Rabat, Morocco (AMIDEAST)

    Contact Peter Hilton for more information:

    In the Department of Middle East Studies, our faculty teach Arabic and Persian, from beginning to advanced levels, in our top-ranked language training programs.

    Fashioned into a cohort-model, our students communicate with Persian and Arabic speakers, gain an insider’s perspective of region’s history and culture, and get direct access to some of the world’s greatest and most influential literature.

    They learn these vital languages, taking their training to study abroad in countries like Morocco or Jordan and as stepping stones into their careers.

    From our student

    Paxton Lambright (Middle East Studies and Global Studies with an Arabic Minor)

    Since graduation, Paxton relocated to Washington D.C. to begin her career in international development. Currently, she works with the Mandela Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders’ Reciprocal Exchange component to support the formation of partnerships and mutual understanding between the United States and Sub-Saharan Africa.

    As a Middle East Studies major and Arabic minor, I found my home in the Middle East Studies Department at USC with great faculty and peers. During my semester abroad in Jerusalem, I spoke both Arabic and Hebrew daily and developed a critical and nuanced perspective that has continued to serve me in my career beyond graduation.