Arabic is one of the main languages of the Middle East. Its influence is felt in related languages and dialects such as Urdu and Kurdish, it is the language of the Quran, and is the fifth most common language with more than 375 million native speakers. Westerners with Arabic fluency are in high demand as the global influence of the Middle East continues to grow.

The Department of Ancient and Modern Languages, Literatures, and Cultures offers six semesters of instruction in Arabic language leading to a minor.

Arabic courses may be of particular interest to students in the certificate in Middle Eastern and North African studies, the international studies major, the linguistics major, and the global studies degree program.

The U.S. State Department includes Arabic in its scholarship and training program for critically-needed languages.


Retro credits earned at the 200-level or above may count toward the minor. Students who begin their Arabic studies in higher-level courses may need to take additional credits, approved by the Arabic language coordinator, to reach a minimum of 18 credits in Arabic.

A minimum of nine credits must be taken at the 300-level or above in residence at UWM. The College requires that students attain at least a 2.0 GPA on all minor credits attempted at UWM. In addition, students must attain a 2.0 GPA on all minor credits attempted, including any transfer work. Students entering with no previous Arabic language experience should enroll in ARABIC 101. Students entering with previous knowledge of, or high school preparation in, Arabic, or transfer students who have studied Arabic in other colleges, are assigned to courses on the basis of a departmental placement consultation with the Arabic program coordinator. Students placed into a course beyond the 101 level who complete their first course with a grade of at least a B may receive retroactive credits, to a maximum of 16 credits (no more than 4 credits for any single course), for the courses leading to the one into which they placed.

The minor in Arabic consists of a minimum of 18 credits, with the following courses (or equivalents) required:

ARABIC 201Third Semester Arabic5
ARABIC 202Fourth Semester Arabic5
ARABIC 301Fifth Semester Arabic3
ARABIC 302Sixth Semester Arabic3
Select one of the following: 13
Islam: Religion and Culture
Internship in Arabic, Upper Division
Study Abroad:
Ad Hoc:
Advanced Independent Study
Total Credits19

Or an upper-level culture course, at least 3 credits, approved by the Arabic Program Coordinator.

Letters & Science Minor Advising

Advising for the minor takes place within the department by a faculty member or staff member. Follow the steps using the "Declare a Minor" button on the department’s website which may include instructions on how to select a faculty advisor if there is more than one to choose from.

Students who already have an L&S college advisor because their degree plan is in L&S can discuss the minor with them as well since they will be familiar with any minor in L&S. Students who are working on a degree from a UWM college other than the College of Letters & Science will not need an L&S college advisor for just a minor and one will not be assigned. These students should work with the faculty or staff advisor they receive as part of the minor declaration process or contact the department directly for assistance.

Applicants who have not started classes at UWM yet who wish to declare a minor should wait until they are registered for their first UWM classes and then can declare the minor using the “Declare a Minor” button on the program’s website. If you have questions about the minor before then, contact