Tuesday, July 8, 2014

More effort to reach conversational level

Simultaneously with the course "Al 9Arabiyyatu Bayna Yadayk" (more on this here) which I started last week, I have also taken to another course. It's "Elementary Modern Standard Arabic" edited by Peter F. Abboud, professor of Arabic at the University of Texas in Austin and Ernest N. McCarus, professor of Arabic at the University of Michigan. I will put nearly all my attention to Arabic in the coming weeks and months to reach at least a basic conversational level. For this I will surely need not only books but also - and foremost - much help from my friends from Arab countries.

First lessons of the EMSA are not difficult after I have done DLI Basic Course (more on this here), but there are some things which are, in my opinion, more  clearly stated or explained. So if I were to compare the two, the latter focuses on grammatical issues at first and then teaches you vast vocabulary useful mainly in official work (remember this is a course for diplomats and official staff), while the former - at least this is what I assume after several chapters, is not so much focused on politics and economy.

I think that EMSA course will be a very good thing to do to complete my basic studies and will help me to build really strong foundations to build upon later. It also comes with accompanying audio files which cannot be overestimated in learning a language like Arabic.

My objective is to reach at least a basic conversational level until the end of the year. To do this I will need much speaking practice. To improve my listening comprehension I will watch TV news programs in Arabic. This will not be difficult because there are dozens of them broadcast for free via satellite.

Among my favorite TV stations there are:

  • Al Jazeera
  • Al Arabiya
  • BBC Arabic
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