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About 2016-11-30T10:45:30+00:00

OVERVIEW

The word qasid is used to describe a path that is direct and smooth. This is the way we believe the Arabic language should be taught. The Qasid Institute for Arabic has quietly developed a reputation as one of the leading centers in the Middle East for Arabic language learning. A comprehensive curriculum taught over five distinct levels takes a student from the proper pronunciation of letters to a level of mastery.

Graduating students who have applied themselves will find that understanding an all-Arabic university course to be within reach, and translating general texts to be manageable. Our graduate-level modules prepare advanced students to teach Arabic and Middle East Studies, something that a number of our alumni now do at universities throughout the US and Europe. To indicate something about its level of rigor, Qasid’s Summer Intensive Program (SIP) has a higher percentage of Ivy League students vis a vis the rest of its student body than any other private Arabic language institute in the Middle East.

The term qasid is also used to describe an individual who strives forward with a direct, specific intention, which is a dictionary-perfect definition for the kind of student that Qasid attracts. Although designed mainly for university-level students and time-starved professionals, Qasid students have come as young as 15 and as old as 65. Our students include consulate officers, Fulbright researchers, full-time mothers, medical doctors, FLAS recipients, and Ivy League graduates, and hail from nearly two dozen countries.

QASID ONLINE

Our perspective is best summed up as this: While pre-recorded videos and self-study materials can help convey fundamental concepts effectively, because language acuity is a complex skill, there is absolutely no getting around the fact that at some point, live lessons with a trained, qualified teacher are an essential component to producing a student of intermediate | advanced proficiency.

While it is generally acknowledged that study abroad is one of the best ways to consolidate one’s knowledge and use of a language, we also understand that living overseas for an extended time is not always possible due to various factors, including one’s domestic academic pursuits, career, family, or finances. Fortunately, advances in communications technology and mobile internet access have created many promising opportunities for education online. And yet, with the rapid rate of these advances and advantages —and perhaps due to the surfeit of educational possibilities they are creating—discussion goes on about the most appropriate scope, method, and realistic limitations of online learning.

Undaunted by those ongoing dialogs, and in fact motivated by the potential that they hold, Qasid views the current changes in digital academia with an innovative outlook. Hence, Qasid is one of the few, specialist Arabic institutes that has developed both an offline and online presence, while retaining its heritage of quality and service. And in that fusion, we have spared no effort to invest in the necessary fiber optic infrastructure, advanced computing hardware, sophisticated software interfaces, professional media production facilities, and specially trained support staff and faculty to deliver the most rewarding student experience available. Thus, as one of the earliest and best equipped entrants in the field of online Arabic learning, and founded upon five years of steadily beta-testing multiple, distance-based learning models and technologies, our position on the “online versus offline” debate is both optimistic and nuanced.

Our perspective is best summed up as this: While pre-recorded videos and self-study materials can help convey fundamental concepts effectively, because language acuity is a complex skill, there is absolutely no getting around the fact that at some point, live lessons with a trained, qualified teacher are an essential component to producing a student of intermediate | advanced proficiency.

Accordingly, and ever sensitive to student input, our available courses and personalized educational services have been created from the ground up to be engaging, challenging, flexible, and convenient. Lessons are shared utilizing explanatory videos, web forms and downloadable worksheets, audio recordings, animated presentations, narrative and expositional media, digitally hand-scribed notations, and of course, interactive live sessions with Qasid instructors in both independent and group formats. And these means are not merely used to deliver content, but to express cultural context and real-world relevancy that brings the language to life, as taught by our faculty of whom a majority are native Arabs.