Teaching Modern Standard Arabic for Non-Native Speakers as a Lingua Franca

Abdullah A. Jaradat, Nisreen Naji Akeel Al-Khawaldeh


Most often, teaching Arabic for non-native speakers is viewed from a diglossic perspective where scholars disagree on the pros and the cons of teaching Modern Standard Arabic (MSA) i.e. the variety of Arabic mostly used among academics and in media, alone or one of the regional varieties or both. This paper calls for teaching MSA as a lingua franca i.e. a language of wider communication, since it is easily understood all over the Arab world, liberating the language from the debatable dichotomy detected in diglossia. This paper is the first in field that connects teaching a variety of Arabic with the benefits and the merits the variety might guarantee the learners in the future. The merits and the benefits as well as other arguments supporting teaching MSA include: MSA is still understood easily all over the Arab World; MSA is the variety of nobody and everybody at the same time; teaching MSA solves the dilemma of which dialect or variety to teach; MSA is the most prestigious variety of Arabic; the label given for varieties is generally an umbrella that covers different regional and social sub-dialects, teaching MSA may pave the way for further Arabic and Islamic Studies, teaching MSA will enhance job opportunity for learners in the field.

DOI: 10.5901/mjss.2015.v6n5p490

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Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences ISSN 2039-9340(Print) ISSN 2039-2117(Online)

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