Stemming from Western Asia, Arabic is today one of the most popular languages in the world today. As a matter of fact, it is among the top five most spoken languages globally. As it stands, statistics show that over 300 million people speak the language.
As a learner, it is noteworthy that the language has multiple dialects, and you may sometimes get confused while conversing with native speakers. The most popular dialects include Egyptian, Gulf, Levantine, Maghrebi, Mesopotamian, Sudanese, Classical Arabic, Modern Standard Arabic etc. The Egyptian is arguably the variant with the most speakers while Modern Standard Arabic is the common ground for all Arabic speakers, irrespective of dialect.
Learning the language is now pretty easy and accessible with the continued demand for Arabic speakers. Thanks to the various learning sites, you can learn to write and speak Arabic from anywhere over the internet. Depending on your level of dedication, you can achieve conversational fluency within a short while.
This article presents you with the 12 best online Arabic courses and classes in 2022, pros, cons, learning tips, and answers to your questions. Dig in to discover our top picks.
5 Tips on How to Learn Arabic Quickly
Choose the Arabic dialects you want to learn: This borders on setting language goals. For what purpose do you like to learn the language? Whether you are planning to relocate, preparing for an interview, a job, a test, or fun, you need to get that right. Defining the purpose will guide you in choosing the correct dialect to dedicate your time to. It will also help you choose the best tutor to meet your language needs.
Make a Language-Learning Timetable: If you must achieve mastery, you have to create time to learn the language every day. Do not try to learn too fast or hurriedly; begin with the basics. If all the time you can spare per day is 15 minutes, ensure that you stay consistent with it. The importance of having a learning schedule cannot be overemphasized.
Selecting the Best Arabic Language Resources: While your tutor provides helpful learning materials, you should not limit yourself to those. Read Arabic articles and newspapers, listen to songs, people speak, watch videos, movies, etc. Try to say the words you hear or remember as you do these. All these only quicken your learning process.
Focus on Arabic Pronunciation: Ensure that you learn the Arabic alphabet first before advancing to words and phrases. Take your time to memorize the letters and their correct pronunciations. It is the basis of learning any language. Pronunciation may be difficult at first, but you will get the hang of it with time. Asides from your tutor, consistent conversations with a friend who is a native speaker will significantly help too.
Immerse Yourself in Arabic: You need to continuously read, speak, and write in Arabic while learning. We suggest surrounding yourself with native speakers, talking with them, and asking questions. Learn about the Arabic culture at every opportunity, and you will be surprised at how fast you will achieve fluency.
Top 12 Online Arabic Courses
Arabic dialects: Moroccan, Egyptian, MSA, Algerian, Levantine, etc.
Price: Tutors set their rates. Generally, rates fall between $4 – $11/25 minutes
Trial lessons: Available for as low as $3/25 minutes
Review: AmazingTalker has a vast lineup of Arabic courses that meet the specific needs of every learner. Available courses include Basic, Business, Conversational, Intermediate, Oral, and many more. Students enjoy immersive one-on-one interactive sessions with native-speaking tutors without a high out-of-pocket cost. As a matter of fact, over 70% of teachers on AmazingTalker are native-speakers while others possess a university degree in their niche as a requirement. At the same time, all tutors have considerable teaching experience in the courses they opt for. Teachers draft a curriculum based on the learning needs of each student, making for a more personalized class experience. Therefore, lesson outlines and teaching approach differ according to each tutor.
Students and teachers enjoy a lot of flexibility such that students and teachers decide their schedules.
|Teachers and students have full control of their teaching and learning process, respectively.||Tutor ratings are sometimes bias|
|There is an AI system to match students with tutors who match their budget and language needs in as little as 30 seconds.||Since the teacher has full control of the teaching process, and not the company, tutoring quality is questionable|
|Tutors set their rates while students have access to affordable fees.|
|Trial classes cost as low as $3|
2.Arab Academy: Learn Arabic Online
Source: Arab Academy
Arabic dialects: Egyptian, Islamic (Classical), and Modern Standard Arabic.
Price: The company provides three subscription plans;
- Monthly: $99
- Quarterly: $79/month
- Semi-Annually: $69/month
Trial lessons: Available for free when you subscribe to the company newsletter.
Review: As is the company’s mission to leverage technology in promoting the Arabic language and culture as a whole, studies at Arab Academy border on real life situations. This way, students learn faster and come to have a solid understanding of Arab culture.
Before paying for a course, the company arranges a free demo class where you get to have an interaction with an expert tutor. The purpose is to observe your competency level and outline your language needs. Arab Academy provides students with a wide library of study materials which include both books, voice and visual illustrations. These materials cover all 4 aspects of a language: listening, reading, speaking, and writing. Also, Arab Academy offers you a virtual Arabic keypad so you do not have to buy one.
Overall, learning is pretty flexible; therefore, students are at liberty to complete the coursework at their pace. Upon completion of the course, you will get a detailed breakdown of your progress together with a transcript.
|All courses are accredited||Monthly subscription comes with far too little one-on-one interactions with tutors.|
|You can request a certificate for free upon completion of a course. Hard copies can also be mailed to your address, at a cost though.|
|Provides student with more than enough study materials|
|Live support functionality|
Source: Madinah Arabic
Arabic dialects: Classical and Modern Standard Arabic.
Trial lessons: Available for free upon submission of your details/1 hour or less.
Review: If you are looking to learn Classical Arabic in all its beauty, then Madinah Arabic is your go-to website. The platform offers its courses and learning tools for free to users. The lessons are divided into two parts: Arabic Reading and Language Courses. The former covers 23 classes on Arabic alphabets, vowels, pronunciations, and a two-part exercise. The other category is subdivided into 110 parts spanning figures of speech, common phrases, numbers, singular and plural forms, etc. Every Arabic letter and word you come across has a sound file attached; all you have to do is click on it.
Incredibly, the website offers an extensive and exhaustive library of learning materials, including a virtual keyboard for exercises, audio, and video descriptions, together with its text-based lessons for free. Also, it is pretty easy to navigate through the pages. However, as a beginner, you will need a lot of dedication and consistency to complete the lessons as they may be too complex.
|Free for everyone||Poor user interface|
|The lessons are well-outlined using tables, making it easy to follow||Beginners may have a difficult time comprehending lessons|
|Vast library of learning resources|
Arabic dialects: Modern Standard Arabic
Price: The courses are divided in four categories which are subscription-based;
- Beginners Arabic: $99/year
- Advanced Arabic: $69/year
- Premium Arabic: $169/year
- Business Arabic: Custom
Trial lessons: None
Review: We love that the courses are divided into separate categories to cater to people with different competence levels. The classes are Beginners to Intermediate, Advanced, Premium, and Corporate. The Premium package houses the entire scheme of the first two stages and other bonus programs that are not generally available. For example, you get access to Arabic Grammar Explorer, Word Trainer, Conversation Practice, etc.
The curriculums are adequately outlined and straightforward, such that reading and comprehension is easy for learners. Furthermore, each category has interactive and practical sessions, an avenue for students to build their speaking confidence.
One of the downsides of this platform is that it provides scanty information about how it operates. Also, you only get a certificate when you subscribe to the Premium plan. We suggest subscribing to this plan to enjoy a wholesome experience learning at ArabicOnline.
|Well-outlined curriculum that accommodates everyone, regardless of competence level||Certificates are issued only to users under the Premium plan|
|You can choose to study with Arabic or western scripts|
Credit: LearningWorks for Kids
Arabic dialects: Modern Standard Arabic
Trial lessons: None. However, you will have to subscribe to ‘Duolingo Plus’ if you do not want to be disturbed with ads, have access to mastery quizzes and a few extras. Duolingo Plus, costs 6.99/month after a free 14-day trial period.
Review: Duolingo came into the scene to make language learning an enjoyable experience for all and sundry. On Duolingo, students study by playing games and earning in-house coins to unlock new levels. The Arabic course on the platform is a take-off from scratch, such that the first thing users learn is the Arabic alphabet. Unlike other platforms, Duolingo does not present all the letters at once; instead, it spreads alphabet lessons across four levels, taking it one step at a time. We like that each lesson takes roughly five minutes to complete, making learning fun and less daunting. However, as much as it is a fun way to learn, the possibility of achieving conversational fluency is dicey due to the technicality of the language.
|It is free and widely available||Gaming may become addictive as learners tend to focus more on earning virtual coins and increasing their fluency score|
|Users can learn from anywhere and even on-the-go|
|Stress-free way for children and teenagers to learn Arabic|
Arabic dialects: Classical, Egyptian, Levantine, Moroccan, and Modern Standard Arabic.
Price: Depends on the course. Courses generally cost about $10.
Trial lessons: Available via subscription. New users are eligible to enjoy a free trial (N.B: Not every new user is eligible as there are restrictions on some regions). Also, all subscriptions come with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Review: Udemy is one of the most popular destinations for online learning, with about 50 million learners globally. The platform helps bridge the gap between teachers and learners, and since its inception, it has garnered over 680 million course enrollments. Today, there are thousands of Arabic courses from independent teachers with verifiable identities. Some of the top courses include Arabic for Tourism, Arabic from Scratch, Basics of Arabic Language, Mastering Sentence Structure, The Ultimate Arabic Course, and Write Arabic Now. The vast library that Udemy houses is exhaustive such that it caters to everyone, regardless of age and competency level. We like that students can access multiple courses via a subscription plan that provides a collection of related courses.
|There are multiple courses across different dialects||Courses are from different individuals. Therefore, the quality and value in some courses are questionable.|
|Affordable and available globally, except in countries with strict regulations|
|Provides a lot of downloadable learning materials|
|Several free Arabic courses|
Arabic dialects: Algerian, Egyptian, Levantine, Mesopotamian, Moroccan, Saudi, Sudanese, and Tunisian.
Price: Talk in Arabic has three pricing structures;
Trial lessons: None
Review: When you visit the Talk In Arabic website, you will be greeted by a remarkably easy-to-use graphical user interface colored in purple and white. Unlike several other Arabic learning sites, one of the most standout features of Talk In Arabic is that it does not teach MSA, talk less of having its contents in the dialect.
For those who wish to achieve conversational fluency, the platform arguably provides the best class structure we have seen in Arabic learning. Talk In Arabic provides high-quality and easily understandable audio, readable, and video materials for every lesson. The videos have both Arabic and English subtitles, which you can switch, while audios contain word pronunciations or podcasts in which an instructor is explaining a subject. Also, you can purchase the company’s Verb Packs ($24.99), which contain lessons on the proper use of verb conjugations across different dialects.
|Beautiful user interface||Some dialects have much more content than others. For example, Egyptian and Levantine Arabic lessons are far more comprehensive than the Sudanese.|
|Teaches Arabic in eight different dialects which several other platforms do not cover|
|High quality video and audio materials|
Source: Qasid Online
Arabic dialects: Classical, Levantine, and Modern Standard Arabic.
Price: Depends on the course and students’ competence level. Learning at Qasid costs between $400 – $2000
Trial lessons: Available for free for one week.
Review: The Qasid Arabic Institute runs Qasid Online, so you should expect a great deal of formality. This Institution operates with the sole aim of teaching Arabic for academic and professional purposes. Therefore, Qasid Online is your go-to option if you fall in either category.
The available courses on Qasid Online are divided across Business Arabic and the three dialects it teaches, making four separate programs. The available programs are; MSA, Classical Arabic, Levantine Dialect (Ammiyah) Program, Diplomat, Corporate, and Private Studies. Each program is unique in content; however, the meeting point is that they all take students on a ride across the four core areas of language learning. Unlike the first three, the latter is exclusive to students with advanced knowledge of Arabic.
Also, if you have specific areas of the language you need to study within a limited time, there are short courses available on the website. Based on the available dialects, you will find several supplementary courses, including Speaking Practice, Translation Help, Arabic for Diplomats, Business Arabic, and Grammar Analysis. Finally, we love that the platform also has an online community of learners who support and help one another learn outside the official class arrangement.
|Offers private one-on-one lessons||Learning at Qasid Online is more expensive|
|The Institution drafts the curriculum||Offers lessons in only three dialects.|
|Students enjoy a great deal of flexibility and self-paced learning as they get to select their study periods|
|Students have free access to the digital library at no extra cost|
Arabic dialects: Modern Standard Arabic
Price: Depends on the course (some are free). Coursera Plus costs $59/month or $399/year.
Trial lessons: 7-day free trial when on Coursera Plus
Review: With ****over 82 million learners, Coursera today is one of the most significant learning sites in the world. Coursera partners with several universities to provide accredited courses to online students. Today, the platform houses over 300 Arabic courses.
Since courses are from different institutions, content and study materials may follow different learning approaches and structures. However, you can be sure that whichever course you opt for is top-quality. Upon subscription, students access all course materials, including readable, video, and audio content needed for a course. Also, students have access to interactive forums where they can discuss or ask questions relating to a course. It is noteworthy that courses are available in different languages; all you need to do is switch with one click.
|Accredited courses from world-leading universities||Free courses do not come with certificates|
|Offers several free courses|
|Lessons can be translated into different languages|
|Offers financial aids and discounts on course subscription fees|
Arabic dialects: Modern Standard Arabic
Price: Basic Plan is free, while Busuu Premium is between $5.42 – $13.99/month, depending on which sub-package you choose.
Trial lessons: 7-day free when you subscribe to Busuu Live.
Review: Learning on Busuu is as easy as visiting its official website. You can learn the Arabic alphabet and elementary concepts without signing up for an account, and anything beyond these will require that you need one.
With an intuitive AI feature, each student gets a unique learning procedure based on their objectives such that they are in control of their learning process. The two main courses are Complete Arabic and Arabic for Travel with easy-to-understand lessons. Busuu utilizes picture and audio content to introduce new letters and words to learners for easy remembrance.
Another exciting feature of the platform is Busuu Live. Busuu Live is an online, face-to-face interactive session with an in-house tutor and a group of up to five other students. Each lesson is a 45-minute intensive learning period to help learners achieve fluency through peer interaction. Subscriptions to live lessons cost between $26 and $84 per month, depending on the number of classes.
|14-day money-back guarantee policy||Modern Standard Arabic is the only available dialect|
|Courses are of high quality and extensive||Not recommended for kids as lessons are somewhat complex|
|Makes room for flexibility|
|Has an online interactive forum|
|Basic membership is free|
Source: Arabic Language Online
Arabic dialects: Egyptian, Jordanian, Moroccan, and Modern Standard Arabic
Price: Depends on which course you choose and the number of hours involved.
Trial lessons: None
Review: Arabic Language Online teaches Modern Standard Arabic and Colloquial Arabic and guides you on which to study based on your goals. Courses cut across language basics to vocabulary, grammar, and conversational fluency. We love that this platform has a strict vetting procedure for teachers such that they all are native speakers and have considerable years of experience in the subject they teach. Depending on which works for you, lessons are held via Zoom or Skype.
Arabic Language Online also has a vast and comprehensive catalog of free materials for students. These free resources include translation of Arabic music lyrics, proverbs and quotes, quizzes, and more. Learners, in fact, do not need to register to access this provision; however, they would need to study on their own.
|All tutors are native speakers||The website does not adequate information about courses|
|Enough free materials are available|
|Students can either opt for private or group tuition|
Source: Rocket Languages
Arabic dialects: Egyptian
Price: $149.95 one-time payment ($99 with discount) or spread $162 over 6 months ($27/month or $19 with discount)
Trial lessons: Free but limited
Review: Rocket Languages houses a whopping 122 hours worth of lessons, which become available upon subscription. Interestingly, learners can access a limited version of the course without signing up on the platform.
The course entails seven modules containing 1979 voice recognition phrases, 33 interactive audio lessons, 29 writing lessons, 28 culture and language lessons, etc. As a culturally immersive course, students learn about Egyptian values, culture, and other aspects of everyday life. Rocket Languages also has great podcast-style interactive audio lessons that help you learn on the go. With an intuitive voice recognition system, you can master correct word pronunciations. Also, the system keeps track of words and phrases you do not pronounce well and presents them to you again.
What’s more? Outside the main lesson, Rocket languages have interactive forums and other exercises to keep students learning. Lastly, students can study at their own pace and go for any module they wish to study per time.
|Best for beginners||No provision for advanced learners|
|Provides one of the best high-quality audio learning materials|
|One-time fee grants lifetime access|
Frequently Asked Questions
1. What do I need to do/know before taking an online Arabic course?
First, you must define why you want to learn Arabic online. Defining your purpose will guide you in choosing a suitable dialect, the best learning site, and an appropriate course to meet your learning goals. Also, you need to know that learning a language like Arabic online requires a lot of time and dedication, so it is essential that you have a study plan.
2. What are the distinctions between free online courses and tutored online classes?
As the name suggests, free online courses are studies that are available without payment implications. In context, you will have to understand the content of the Arabic courses on your own with little or no assistance from the provider. On the other hand, a tutored online class is an arrangement in which there is a teacher to provide tuition to a student(s). Tutored online Arabic classes mostly come with a cost implication.
3. How to learn Arabic online effectively?
Learning any language at all is pretty tasking. Studying free materials or playing games may not be the best way to learn Arabic online; therefore, we strongly advise that you hire an online tutor. Having constant interactions with Arabic speakers is one of the most effective ways to learn the language, and signing up on a language learning website is a great way to start.
Gone are the days when learning was restricted to physical classrooms. However, do not get too comfortable; you have to put in a lot of work to get results. For anyone who wishes to learn Arabic over the internet, we strongly recommend any of the 12 best online Arabic courses and classes in this review.
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