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UCLA students have a wealth of courses on the Middle East to choose from, both at the graduate and undergraduate level. Graduate students are encouraged to study and conduct research in the region itself.

UCLA undergraduates may declare either a major or a minor in a Middle East discipline.

The department of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures offers BA degrees in Ancient Near East, Arabic, Egyptology, Iranian Studies, Jewish Studies, Armenian Studies, Hebrew and Jewish Studies, Israel Studies, and Middle Eastern Studies.

The College of Letters and Science provides a systematic introduction to the study of Islam and of Arabic language and literature.

Students can specialize in the Middle East in many other UCLA departments, among them Art History, Comparative Literature, EthnomusicologyHistory, Political Science, and the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology.

Interdepartmental degrees offered through UCLA's International Institute combine the resources of several departments so students can focus on a geographic region such as the Middle East, or an international issue such as Global Health or International Development.

UCLA provides world-class academic and professional training to meet the growing demand for area experts. The Center for Near Eastern Studies integrates the study of the Middle East at UCLA, including study of Middle Eastern American communities.

The department of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures offers MA and PhD degrees in Islamic Studies, Ancient Near Eastern Civilizations, Arabic, Armenian, Egyptology, Hebrew Bible, Iranian, Jewish Studies, Semitics, and Turkic.

Graduate students also receive degrees for Middle East research in other disciplines. Recent PhD's have been awarded for Middle East topics in the departments of Anthropology, Applied Linguistics, Archaeology, Art History, Comparative Literature, Education, English, Musicology and Ethnomusicology, French and Francophone Studies, Gender Studies, Geography, Germanic Languages, History, Library and Information Science, Political Science, Urban Planning, Social Welfare, Sociology, Spanish, Theater, and World Arts & Cultures. Prospective students should apply for admission to the relevant department.

To explore each department's degrees, faculty, courses, and admissions requirements, visit the UCLA Graduate Programs website.


A comprehensive list of Middle East courses offered in departments across the campus. Select a year and quarter, then press Search to view the courses for that quarter, with their departments and instructors.

Both graduates and undergraduates take advantage of the University of California Education Abroad Program. It offers opportunities for summer travel study, and for credit coursework during the academic year in programs at selected partner universities in North Africa and the Middle East. The Education Abroad office works together with the host universities to ensure that the programs meet excellent academic standards. The requirements for receiving course credit vary depending on your department. Financial aid and scholarships are available for qualified students.

Middle Eastern languages at UCLA are taught in the department of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures. These courses are open to UCLA students and to non-UCLA students with the consent of the instructor, space permitting. For more information about special program enrollment, please see this web page. The California Education Code allows undergraduate students enrolled in any campus of the California community colleges, the California State University, or the University of California to enroll without formal admission in one course per academic term at a campus of either of the other systems on a space-available basis. People not enrolled in one of those systems may enroll and pay through UCLA Extension, with the consent of the instructor.

During the academic year, the department teaches courses in Arabic, Armenian, Hebrew, Persian, and Turkish. Occasionally, minority and historic languages such Akkadian, Aramaic, Coptic, Old and Middle Egyptian, Middle Iranian, Ottoman Turkish, Phoenician, Sumerian, and Ugaritic are offered. Summer classes at the UCLA. And the UCLA Center for World Languages offers summer workshops for instructors of heritage languages of Middle Eastern languages and occasionally includes courses for heritage speakers as well.

Language Schools

For intensive study of Arabic, Armenian, Hebrew, Kurdish, Persian, and Turkish, please see the list below of international and domestic programs, including online offerings. Please check directly with the programs for details. Students considering study abroad should check the US State Department's current Travel Advisories website. 



For Arabic courses in the US and abroad, check the website of the American Association of Teachers of Arabic (AATA).

Al Akhawayn University, Arabic and North African Studies Program (ARANAS), Ifrane, Morocco

American Councils Arabic Overseas Flagship Program

American Institute for Maghrib Studies

American University in Cairo (AUC), Arabic Language Institute

American University of Beirut (AUB), Center for Arab and Middle Eastern Studies (CAMES)

Arab American Language Institute in Morocco (AALIF), Meknes

Arabic Language Institute in Fez (ALIF)

California State University, San Bernardino, Summer Intensive Arabic Program

California State University, San Diego, Language Acquisition Resource Center

Center for Arabic Study Abroad (CASA) at American University in Cairo and Qasid Arabic Institute in Amman

Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) Program

Fajr Center for the Arabic Language, Cairo

Heyadet Institute, Cairo

Indiana University, Intensive Summer Language Workshops

Middlebury College, Vermont

Middlebury at Mills College, Oakland, CA

Monterey Institute of International Studies, Monterey, CA

Qalam Center for Arabic Studies, Rabat

Qasid Institute for Classical and MS Arabic, Amman

Sultan Qaboos Cultural Center

University of Arizona, Arabic Flagship Program

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Summer Institute for Languages of the Muslim World

University of Jordan Language Center

University of Maryland, Arabic Flagship Program

University of Oklahoma, Arabic Flagship Program

University of Texas at Austin, Arabic Summer Institute

University of Wisconsin-Madison, Arabic, Persian, and Turkish Language Immersion Institute

West Los Angeles College, Elementary Arabic



Arizona State University, Critical Languages Institute



Ben Gurion University of the Negev, Intensive Hebrew Language Courses

Rothberg International School, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Hebrew Language Summer Courses

Arizona State University, Critical Languages Institute

Middlebury College, Vermont

Tel Aviv University, Intensive Hebrew Course

University of Haifa, International School



DC Internationals MESALI, Summer Intensive Language Institute

Indiana University, Intensive Summer Language Workshops

Northeastern Illinois University, Summer Institute in Kurdish Language and Culture

University of Arizona, Center for Middle Eastern Studies and Critical Languages Program, in partnership with University of Texas-Austin Center for Middle Eastern Studies, Online Kurdish Kurmanji

Zahra Institute, Kurdish Studies



Arizona State University, Critical Languages Institute

California State University, San Diego, Language Acquisition Resource Center

Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) Program

Indiana University, Intensive Summer Language Workshops

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Summer Institute for Languages of the Muslim World

University of Maryland, Persian Flagship Program

University of Wisconsin-Madison, Arabic, Persian, and Turkish Language Immersion Institute



Arizona State University, Critical Languages Institute

Boğaziçi University, Istanbul, Turkish Language and Culture Program

Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) Program

Dilmer Turkish Language Teaching Center, Istanbul

Duke University, Duke in Istanbul

Indiana University, Turkish Language Flagship

Sabanci University, Istanbul, Modern Turkish Language and Culture

Tőmer Turkish Language Programs, (Ankara University), several locations

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Summer Institute for Languages of the Muslim World

University of Wisconsin-Madison, Arabic, Persian, and Turkish Language Immersion Institute



NaTakallam, Immersive Language Practice

American Councils for International Education Study Abroad

Critical Language Scholarship (CLS)

Boren Scholarship

Gilman-McCain Scholarship

Gilman Scholarship Critical Need Language Award

We encourage students to visit the UCLA Career Center and explore the many campus resources available for career planning and professional development. And each November the UCLA International Institute hosts International Education Week (IEW) a week-long series of events across campus that highlight international education resources, programs and initiatives on campus and around the world. By participating in IEW students can learn about international career paths and opportunities for international language and research fellowships.