By now, you’ve probably heard all of the horror stories about how difficult Arabic is to learn:

“Arabic letters look like hieroglyphics.”
“There are too many strange sounds. It makes learning to speak it impossible.”
“Arabic has an enormous vocabulary; I mean, c’mon! 400 words for a camel, and 200 for a lion?”
“Arabic grammar is too complicated.”

Indeed, when it comes to learning languages, Arabic gets a bad rep. Anyone who knows anything about learning a second language knows that learning Arabic is like learning a language on a whole nother level.

But you also probably know that the countries of the Middle East are some of the fastest growing economies. So, the demand for Western Arabic speakers being higher than the supply.

How do we know that you already know these things? Well, because right now you’re still looking for an Arabic language school. Also, you’re still looking because you don’t care what the naysayers have to say – to you, learning Arabic is more than worthwhile.

So, as you’re looking for the perfect school, what are some things you need to know before you go? First, the Arabic language school that is just right for you is definitely out there. As you begin your search, here are some things to keep in mind:

1) Location! Location! Location!

You’ll find some of the best Arabic language programs can be found in any one of the Arabic speaking countries from Egypt to Jordan to Lebanon and Morocco and others. Of course, those are just the obvious choices where the language has official status. No matter which country you choose, however, be sure that you’ll be headed somewhere new and different and oh-so-beautiful.

2) You’ll Get Used To It

Living in the Middle East can be a little different than what you’re used to in the Western world. The cultural norms and way of life you find there may take a little getting used to at first. However, Arabic immersion programs can help in peeling back some of the cultural layers. Also, while also giving you the most important tool you need to understand it all – Arabic itself! Furthermore, when you’re not studying, don’t be shy when it comes to practicing what you’ve learned by having conversations in Arabic with your friends, teachers, language tutors, and host family to learn more about what their everyday lives are like. You’ll be surprised to learn how much you have in common!

3) You’ll Get Cultured

Oh, and speaking of culture, you’re going to get plenty of Arab culture when you attend Arabic language schools abroad. Language and culture are like two peas in a pod. When you choose to study Arabic, not only will you find that the language covers a pretty vast geographical area, but within that area you’ll also find a vast number of cultures and ethnic groups.

4) So Many Dialects, So Little Time

Don’t be surprised if the Modern Standard Arabic you’re learning in school doesn’t sound like the Arabic you’re hearing on the street.  This is because there are many Arabic dialects. Some would be Egyptian Arabic, Syrian Arabic, and the Iraqi dialect, to name a few. So, if you’re traveling between different Arabic speaking countries, you might not understand everything right away. However, don’t let that discourage you. The basics are pretty much the same between all of the dialects and MSA. Even more so, these days the media helped expanding the level of understanding among different dialects in other regions. Nevertheless, if you’re headed abroad to learn Arabic for a very specific purpose, consider an Arabic language school that teaches your dialect of choice.

5) You Might Be Wanted by the CIA (or Other International Organizations)

The US has designated Arabic as a critical language. This means that it’s a language that is vital to America’s national security. The government actually encourages you to travel overseas and learn Arabic. Then, come back home and work for them in law enforcement, defense contracting, and others areas. Heck, they’re even willing to help you learn Arabic language skills. If you reach a certain level of functional fluency, they’ll help you make a career out of it.

6) I Get By With a Little (Financial) Help from My Friends

The US government wants you to learn Arabic so much that they might even pay for you to go an Arabic language school abroad by making federally-funded scholarships for Arabic available to help support participation in certain intensive Arabic language programs. Are you currently a U.S. citizen? Are you or will you soon be enrolled in a program of university study as an undergraduate or graduate student? If you answered “yes” to these two questions – awesome! You might just qualify for a number of study Arabic abroad scholarships including Critical Language Scholarships, the Arabic Overseas Flagship program, or the National Security Language Initiative for Youth as a way to both help you get the education you need and start the career path you want.

Thinking about all of the things mentioned above can help you choose the school you want. One thing that you can do to give you a head start is download the Kaleela Arabic learning app. Studies have shown that Arabic learning apps are the best way to learn Arabic and Arabic dialects and the Kaleela Arabic learning app let’s you learn Arabic language skills on your own, at your own pace, whenever and wherever you want. This way, you’ll already have a heads up on what to expect from the language once you start studying it at school. You can even use it to supplement the Arabic you’re learning in class which, in turn, can help you learn Arabic faster. Visit our website and find out how you can download our Arabic learning app to your IOS or Android mobile device and start to learn to speak Arabic today.

Kaleela – Learn Arabic the Right Way!