Ara­bic cour­ses in Oman a big draw for ex­pats

It’s an op­por­tu­nity to study lan­guage in a nat­u­ral en­vi­ron­ment, to know deeply its cul­ture, tra­di­tions, and cus­toms

Times of Oman - - OMAN - Times News Ser­vice

MUSCAT: Thirty-eight stu­dents from 11 coun­tries have come to Oman to learn Ara­bic at Sul­tan Qa­boos Col­lege for Teach­ing Ara­bic Lan­guage to Non-Na­tive Speak­ers in Manah.

Dur­ing the eight-week course, the stu­dents re­ceive 160 hours of class­room teach­ing, as well as a con­tin­ual cul­tural pro­gramme, which in­cludes vis­its to the most im­por­tant Omani his­tor­i­cal and cul­tural sites.

The course also in­cludes cul­tural lec­tures and lessons in Ara­bic cal­lig­ra­phy.

“I joined this col­lege be­cause I was in­ter­ested in learn­ing Ara­bic, as well as Oman’s cul­ture, which is what I’m mostly look­ing for­ward to. I was just sur­prised when I found the course to be more in­tense than what I ex­pected,” said Vera Novotna, a 25-year-old stu­dent from the Czech Repub­lic.

Ex­pe­ri­ence

“I was study­ing Ara­bic back in Poland, when my col­leagues told me about their suc­cess­ful ex­pe­ri­ence in learn­ing Ara­bic in Oman,” said Be­ni­amin Lewicki. “I liked the course and the classes here, the teach­ers are also great, and there is loads of speak­ing, which is what I found the hard­est thing in learn­ing Ara­bic.”

Another 20-year-old stu­dent, Kse­nia from Be­larus, said, “I’ve known about this pro­gramme from my teacher at Univer­sity. I study at MSLU, which is the lin­guis­tic univer­sity in Minsk. When I heard about this pro­gramme it was like a dream: palms, sun, classes with a na­tive speaker al­most ev­ery day, twice a week you have an ex­cur­sion into a his­tor­i­cal do­main, the sea and more.

“I asked my­self what am I wait­ing for? It’s an op­por­tu­nity to study lan­guage in a nat­u­ral en­vi­ron­ment, to know deeply its cul­ture, tra­di­tions, and cus­toms. My eyes lit up. Ev­ery day I try to know more about Oman. The sys­tem of teach­ing here is mod­ern and very easy to un­der­stand.”

The Sul­tan Qa­boos Col­lege for Teach­ing Ara­bic Lan­guage to Non-Na­tive Speak­ers aims to pro­duce grad­u­ates with ba­sic lin­guis­tic and cul­tural com­pe­tency.

It strives to en­able stu­dents to com­mu­ni­cate and in­ter­act ef­fec­tively in any Arab so­ci­ety, and to al­low them to con­tinue fur­ther stud­ies in ed­u­ca­tional in­sti­tu­tions where Ara­bic is the medium of in­struc­tion.

The col­lege has the sup­port of His Majesty, Sul­tan Qa­boos bin Said, who has pro­moted the spread of Ara­bic glob­ally by es­tab­lish­ing chairs in Ara­bic lan­guage stud­ies at a num­ber of uni­ver­si­ties through­out the world.

– Sup­plied photo

CUL­TURAL COM­PE­TENCY: The Sul­tan Qa­boos Col­lege for Teach­ing Ara­bic Lan­guage to Non-Na­tive Speak­ers aims to pro­duce grad­u­ates with ba­sic lin­guis­tic and cul­tural com­pe­tency.

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