Undergraduate study - 2021 entry

MA Arabic and French

UCAS code: TR61

Duration: 4 years

Delivery: Full-time

School: Literatures, Languages and Cultures

College: Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences

Study abroad

Introducing MA Arabic and French

Arabic and French make a natural combination. Interaction between the two languages and cultures has taken place over many centuries and continues in the present day. This interaction is reflected as much in the cinema and music of contemporary Europe and North Africa as in the Chansons de Gestes of medieval times.

Arabic is the main language of more than 250 million people in a huge swathe of land extending from the Atlantic to the Persian Gulf. Apart from opening the door to a fascinating and varied region, knowledge of Arabic provides access to the rich intellectual heritage of Islam.

French is a major world language, in Africa as well as in Europe and Canada. Alongside intensive study of the language, you will explore French culture – its literature and cinema, but also its fascinating political history and philosophical ideas. French art and thought have played a central part in creating our modern civilisation.

The School of Literatures, Languages & Cultures at the University of Edinburgh is recognised in the UK and internationally as a leading institution for the research-led study of languages.

A year spent studying Arabic and French abroad provides complete immersion in both.

Year 1

You will study elementary Arabic to learn basic grammar and develop your vocabulary and you will take either French 1A or French 1B, depending on your language skills. You will also take courses in Islamic history and modern Middle Eastern history.

Year 2

You will continue with your language studies in Arabic and take a course in the religion of Islam.

You will also take French 2 courses, which build on your knowledge of the French language and French literature and culture from Year 1.

Finally, you will choose a further course from a range of humanities options drawing on our expertise across literatures, languages, cultures, and more.

Year 3

You'll spend Year 3 abroad, dividing your 30 weeks between Arabic and French, and spending at least eight weeks in a country relevant to each language.

For your study abroad in Arabic, you can choose between at least two different countries in the Arabic-speaking world. For French, you can choose to study, or to work as a language assistant in a school.

During your year abroad, we'll aim to ensure your experience is as beneficial as possible to your final year, as well as to your wider language learning, cultural awareness and skills development. For example, you'll take an e-learning course in French, which will count as part of your third year mark and prepare you for your fourth year French language courses.

Year 4

You will continue to develop your language and translation skills and will write your honours dissertation. You will also choose from a range of specialist option courses dealing with different aspects of Islam and the Middle East and French literature and culture.

Programme structure

Find out more about the compulsory and optional courses in this degree programme.

To give you an idea of what you will study on this programme, we publish the latest available information. However, please note this may not be for your year of entry, but for a different academic year.

Programme structure (2019/20)

Our facilities

Teaching takes place in and around the University of Edinburgh's Central Area in a world-leading festival city bursting with cinemas, theatres, galleries, libraries and collections, including one of the best French collections in the UK in the National Library of Scotland.

Edinburgh's world cinema scene is particularly strong, with annual festivals such as the French Film Festival and Africa in Motion, and plenty to see and do throughout the year, including at the nearby Institut français d’Écosse.

As well as the University's excellent computing and audiovisual resources, support services and social spaces, you'll also have access to over 23,000 Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies resources in its collections, including Islamic manuscripts.

We are the proud home of the student-led French theatre society, Les Escogriffes.

Study abroad

You'll spend Year 3 abroad, dividing your 30 weeks between Arabic and French, and spending at least eight weeks in a country relevant to each language.

This is your chance to immerse yourself in Arabic- and French-language culture, and to develop your broader life experience and skills towards life after university.

What are my options for going abroad?

How will I learn?

Experienced lecturers and language instructors will teach a combination of lectures, tutorials and language classes.

How will I be assessed?

You will be assessed by a combination of exams and coursework, including essays, exercises, presentations and oral language examinations. You will also complete a dissertation in your final year.

Programme details

Find out more about this programme's aims, what you will learn, how you will be assessed and what skills and knowledge you will develop.

To give you an idea of what to expect from this programme, we publish the latest available information. However, please note this may not be for your year of entry, but for a different academic year.

Programme details (2019/20)

Studying languages to degree level, especially when you spend a year abroad as part of your studies, gives you a set of skills and life experiences highly prized by employers.

More than 250 million people are native speakers of Arabic, the fifth most widely spoken language in the world, and more than 75 million speak French, which is an official language in 29 countries.

An understanding of Arabic and French, and the cultures to which they open doors, is an excellent primer for a range of careers in the media, non-governmental organisations, industry, and the diplomatic and civil services.

With increasing migration in response to changing global dynamics, there is high demand for Arabic and French graduates both at home and abroad, including in translation, interpreting and education. There are also opportunities to continue studying at postgraduate level.

Standard entry requirement

The standard entry requirement is:

  • SQA Highers: AAAA-AAAB. BBB must be achieved in one year of S4-S6.
  • A Levels: AAB - ABB.
  • IB: 43 points with 776 at HL - 37 points with 666 at HL.

Minimum entry requirement

The minimum entry requirement for widening access applicants is:

  • SQA Highers: ABBB by end of S6. BBB must be achieved in one year of S4-S6.
  • A Levels: ABB.
  • IB: 34 points with 655 at HL.

More information for widening access applicants

Required subjects

The grades used to meet our entry requirements must include:

  • SQA: Highers: French at B. National 5s: English at C.
  • A Levels: French or Arabic at B. GCSEs: French at B or 6 (if not at A Level) and English at C or 4.
  • IB: HL: French or Arabic at 5. SL: French at 5 (if not at HL) and English at 5.

Additional requirements

Native speakers

Please note that the Arabic degrees involve beginners language study and are not suitable for native or near-native speakers.

Find out more about entry requirements

International applicants

We welcome applications from students studying a wide range of international qualifications.

Entry requirements by country

Mature applicants

We welcome applications from mature students and accept a range of qualifications.

Mature applicant qualifications

You must demonstrate a level of English language competency at a level that will enable you to succeed in your studies, regardless of your nationality or country of residence.

SQA, GCSE and IB

For SQA, GCSE and IB students, unless a higher level is specified in the stated entry requirements, a pass is required in English at the following grades or higher:

  • SQA National 5 at C
  • SQA Standard Grade at 3
  • SQA Intermediate 1 at A
  • SQA Intermediate 2 at C
  • GCSE/IGSCE at C or 4
  • Level 2 Certificate Grade C
  • IB Standard Level at 5 (English ab initio is not accepted for entry)

English language tests

We accept the following English language qualifications at the grades specified:

  • IELTS Academic module overall 6.5 with 5.5 in each component.
  • TOEFL-iBT 92 or above with 20 in each section. We do not accept TOEFL MyBest Score to meet our English language requirements.
  • Cambridge English: Advanced or Proficiency overall 176 with 162 in each component.
  • Trinity ISE: ISE II with a distinction in all four componens.

We also accept a wider range of international qualifications and tests.

English language qualifications must be no more than three and a half years old from the start date of the degree you are applying to study, unless you are using IELTS, TOEFL, or Trinity ISE, in which case it must be no more than two years old.

English language requirements

This information is part of a government initiative to enhance the material that higher education institutions provide about their degree programmes.

It is one of many sources of information which will enable you to make an informed decision on what and where to study.

Please note that some programmes do not have Discover Uni data available.

Tuition Fees

Tuition fees for MA Arabic and French

Additional costs

Year 3 includes study abroad in the Middle East. You will incur associated travel costs (flights, visas etc).

For residence abroad for French, we give you a wide range of options. Your costs will depend on where you decide to go and how you spend your time.

Universities may charge you a fee for courses but we will reimburse you for this provided the course has been approved.

You will be informed about the cost implications as you plan your year abroad, during Year 2.

Funding

For more information on how much it will cost to study with us and the financial support available see our fees and funding information.

Fees and funding