Arabic in America: Culture and People

This course is accepting second-round applications on a rolling basis. Apply online.

Do you speak Arabic at home? Are you studying Arabic at Stanford? Have you done a year of Arabic study elsewhere? If you answer yes to any one of these questions then “Arabic in America: Culture and People” might be for you.

Our intensive course is designed to improve your command of Arabic while living in an active community of Arabic speakers and learners. We will be talking about films, poetry, politics, religion, gender and much more – all the while practicing how to talk to people, read newspapers, recite poetry, write emails, all with the goal of communicating better in Arabic.

Our immersive experience will include: mosques and churches in the Bay Area and beyond, cultural festivals, research in the Hoover Archive, film, music, food, culture, and politics. Whether it is a trip to the beach or a classroom session on Arabic gender and sexuality, we will be talking in Arabic. All Arabic is welcome, from Moroccan or Iraqi colloquial (and everywhere in between) to Quranic recitation and Classical poetry.

Meet the Instructor(s)

Khalid Obeid


Khalid Obeid is a lecturer of Arabic at the Stanford Language Center. He holds an Ed.D in Organization and Leadership from the School of Education at the University of San Francisco and a MPA from Notre Dame de Namur University. He received his B.A. in Arabic Language and Literature from Birzeit University in Palestine.  Dr. Obeid is an ACTFL Certified OPI and WPT Tester/Rater in Arabic.  He enjoys literature and loves teaching the Arabic language. His favorite activity is watching, playing and coaching soccer.

Salem Aweiss


Salem Aweiss is a lecturer of Arabic at the Stanford Language Center. He holds a Ph.D. in educational studies/second language acquisition from The Ohio State University and has taught at the University of Florida, Middlebury College, the University of Maryland, the Monterey Institute for International Studies (MIIS), and at Birzeit University in Palestine. His research interests include second language acquisition, teacher training, evaluation and assessment, heritage learners, curriculum design and development, education reform, among others. He is also a certified ACTFL/ILR OPI tester and is active in the testing community. Dr. Aweiss is the co-author of a book and a number of articles on reading comprehension strategies, comprehensive education reform, interfaith dialogue, peace and tolerance education, and research design in foreign language education.