MArabic (Master of Arabic and Islamic Studies)

UCAS code T605
Duration 4 Years
Typical offer AAA-ABB; IB 36-32
Discipline Arab and Islamic Studies
Location Streatham (Exeter)


Our highly-selective MArabic programme offers the opportunity to graduate with an undergraduate Masters-level qualification, while obtaining intensive language training, unparalleled study abroad and work experience opportunities.

You will gain experience of living and working in the Arab world, achieve high levels of proficiency in Arabic, and gain a thorough understanding of the politics, society and culture of the Middle East.

The MArabic is a four-year programme which includes two periods of study and work in an Arab country. 

This programme has been designed for students with no previous knowledge of Arabic. Students with proficiency in Arabic seeking a more rigorous programme of study will be better suited to our BA Middle East Studies.


Students on the MArabic have the opportunity to apply for the Sharjah Scholarships of up to £1,500 per annum (for up to four years).

Programme structure

The modules we outline here provide examples of what you can expect to learn on this degree course based on recent academic teaching. The precise modules available to you in future years may vary depending on staff availability and research interests, new topics of study, timetabling and student demand.

Year 1 (120 credits)

Your first year involves an immersive introduction to the study of Arabic. This will include dialect training to prepare you for living and working overseas. You’ll also have the opportunity to take modules in the history, society, politics and economics of the region and obtain an introduction to Islam.

Compulsory modules

ARAXXXX Elementary Arabic Language 1 30
ARAXXXX Elementary Arabic Language 2 30
ARA1036 Histories of the Middle East, 600-1800 C.E. 15
ARA1010 Politics and Economy of the Contemporary Middle East 15
ARA1018 Introduction to Islam 15

Optional modules

A maximum of 15 credits of options from modules offered by the Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies, and the College of Social Sciences and International Studies, subject to prior approval of the Programme Director, fulfilling any pre-requisites and timetabling cohesion.

Year 2 (150 credits)

Your second year will enable you to experience what it’s like to live and work in the Arab World. You’ll enhance your language training at one of our accredited institutions and undertake a work placement. Financial, academic and pastoral support will be available to enable you to make the most of your time in the Middle East.  

Compulsory modules

ARA2009 Living and Communicating in the Arab World 30
ARAXXXX Year Abroad with work placement 120


Year 3 (120 credits)

You’ll receive enhanced language training and choose from modules on topics such as the relationship between the West and the Middle East, war and violence in the Middle East, and sexuality and spirituality in Islam.

Compulsory modules

ARA3190 Intermediate Arabic Language 30
ARA3196 Independent Research 30

Optional modules

Then you can choose two of the following modules or one module and an additional 30 credits from other modules offered by the Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies, and the College of Social Sciences and International Studies, subject to prior approval of the Programme Director, fulfilling any pre-requisites and timetabling cohesion.

ARA3041 War, Violence and Revolution in the Middle East, 1800-2013 30
ARA3191 Identities in the Modern Middle East 30
ARA3193 International Relations of the Middle East 30
ARA3194 Love, Sexuality and Spirituality in Islam 30
ARA3195 Islam Contested: Faith, Thought and Politics in the Contemporary World 30


Year 4 (90 credits)

The first term will be spent in the Middle East enabling you to explore a particular career-path through bespoke work experience and specialist language training. On return to Exeter you’ll complete your dissertation and choose from a range of Masters modules, providing advanced study in specialisms of particular interest to you.

Compulsory modules

ARAM081 Advanced Arabic language 30
ARAM082 Dissertation 60


Then you can choose from the following range of Masters modules.

ARAM054 State and Society in the Middle East 30
ARAM211 The Revolution of 1978/79, the Islamic Republic and the Politics of Contemporary Iran 30
ARAM214 Islamic Culture and Civilisation 30
ARAM215 Studying the Contemporary Middle East 30
ARAM102 Islam in Practice 30
ARAM220 Gender, Politics and Society in the Middle East 30
ARAM103A New Approaches to Islamic Thought 30
ARAM188 The Middle East Since 1945 30
ARAM209 Palestinian Politics after Oslo 30
ARAM204 The History and Historiography of the Palestine Question 30

Entry requirements 2018

Typical offer

AAA-ABB; IB 36-32

International students

International students should check details of our English language requirements and may be interested in our Foundation programmes.

Further information

Please read the important information about our Typical offer.

For full and up-to-date information on applying to Exeter and entry requirements, including requirements for other types of qualification, please see the Applying section.

Learning and teaching

The Institute occupies a purpose-built building with IT and audio-visual equipment, spacious lecture rooms and common rooms. You will learn your chosen language(s) in small interactive classes, using the language laboratory, satellite TV, the internet and computer-assisted language learning. Non-language modules are delivered through lectures, seminars, tutorials and discussions. You can also expect to develop transferable skills in communication and study techniques that will enable you to undertake independent research and analysis. You’ll have a personal tutor who is available for advice and support throughout your programme of study. Our excellent library facilities include the Arab World Documentation Unit which provides a unique learning resource and contains more than 100,000 items on the Arab Gulf states and wider Arab world.


You will be assessed by exam and coursework, including essay writing, presentations, project work and a dissertation. You must pass your first year assessment in order to progress to the second year, but the results do not count towards your degree classification. The assessments in the second, third and fourth years all contribute to your final degree classification. Progression to Masters study for MArabic students depends on academic attainment.

Module choice

Option modules can extend beyond Arab and Islamic Studies if you are studying MArabic: dependent on timetable constraints, pre-requisites and programme structure, it may be possible to study option modules outside your subject area.

Arab and Islamic Studies Year Abroad

The year abroad is an integral part of the study of Arabic, advancing your knowledge of grammar and syntax as well as reading, writing, speaking and listening skills. It provides an excellent opportunity for students of Arabic to become immersed in Arabic society and culture and to gain fluency in a spoken dialect of the Arabic Language.

Study abroad

You will spend the second year at one of our accredited Arabic language study centres. Immersed in the culture of an Arabic country, you’ll supplement your language training through practical application. We currently have students in Amman in Jordan, but opportunities may also be available in other locations. Destinations are carefully chosen depending on conditions in the region and the latest details can be found on our website. Many of our students take the opportunity to travel throughout the region once they complete their assessments. On return, you will have increased your fluency in the language and gained an invaluable cultural appreciation of the region.

MArabic students have an additional opportunity to study and work abroad in their final (fourth) year, again at an accredited Arabic language centre. See the information on work placements.

Find out more on the Study Abroad page.


Our degrees provide an appreciation and understanding of the culture, history and language of the Middle East and the wider world of Islam. Opportunities to acquire valuable work experience in the UK or Middle East will help develop your career aspirations and add value to your CV. You will develop analytical and research skills as well as an awareness of different interpretations of issues and events. You will develop opinions and use effective communication skills to put forward your ideas and conclusions. You will also develop your skills of organising your workload and meeting deadlines.

All these skills are valued by employers from many different fields and can open up career paths in a wide variety of areas from academic research and government work to more commercially-based careers. Many students specialising in Arabic go on to work in the region or in fields such as interpreting and translation, journalism, business, development or law. Find out more on the Arab and Islamic Studies Careers page.

Work placement

MArabic students benefit from a work placement, designed to enhance your language ability and the types of transferrable skills sought by employers. In the final year of your degree you’ll have the opportunity to undertake a second work placement abroad, perhaps in another Arabic country, such as Dubai, in order to develop language skills specific to your ideal career path.

Find out more on the Study Abroad page.

Contact us


Phone: +44 (0)1392 723192

Website: Visit the Arab and Islamic Studies website

How to apply Get a prospectus Visit subject website 2017 degrees  

The MArabic (Master of Arabic and Islamic Studies)

Our four-year MArabic programme offers intensive language training, unparalleled study abroad and work experience opportunities.

View our Arab and Islamic Studies brochure

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