Arabic Language & Culture Courses with MCAS in Morocco

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About

The Moroccan Center for Arabic Studies engages in education year-round. With four terms relative to the Seasons: spring, summer, autumn and winter, each can last up to three months and curriculum includes Modern Standard Arabic, Colloquial Moroccan Arabic as well as calligraphy. There are various classes available based on the student’s experience with the language, from entry level, to beginner, intermediate and advanced. Students also have the possibility of enrolling for academic courses that are taught by faculty members such as Gender Studies, Arab Spring, Migration and more while getting credits at the same time.

Questions & Answers

That’s really helpful. Thank you, Julia! She has booked a two week stay and will be doing 8 hours of Arabic per day, and then some volunteering. She’s a bit apprehensive, but is looking forward to it. I really appreciate your input. Fay

Reviews

97%
based on 75 reviews
  • Instruction 9.7
  • Support 9.7
  • Fun 9.7
  • Housing 9.5
  • Value 9.7
Showing 31 - 45 of 75
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Emma
10/10

Great first experience in Morocco

My review will be a little different as I did not follow a whole program but just one introductionary lesson in Arabic. With a group of 16 law students we visited Morocco and firtst of all Rabat. The language course was a great start of our trip. We received a very warm welcome and had a wonderful break on the rooftop, overseeing Rabat while having tea. MCAS gave us just the right information, language wise but also cultural, food and safety-wise, to have the best stay.
We did one course in MSA and one course in Darija. It was a little bit long so we stopped before we had done everything but it was more than enough to get an idea of arabic and most were able to say a few things. Our, very calm, teacher has taught us quite a lot within such a short period of time.

I would recommend MCAS to everyone!

Yes, I recommend this program
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Saeidha
10/10

Fabulous Arabic language school! Wish I had discovered it sooner...

I had been wanting to study Arabic for a number of years but could never find the right institute, neither in the UK nor abroad that would provide the flexibility to accommodate my timescales around my work commitments. Luckily recently a google search brought up MCAS which seemed flexible so I sent off an email enquiry. I received a speedy and very helpful response from the programme director Ali Bensebaa, with clear pricing and flexibility to accommodate my timescales so I decided to sign up for one-to-one lessons. Despite having a positive feeling, I wasn't sure what to expect as I was a complete beginner, had no idea where to start and in my mind I always feared one-to-one lessons would be boring. But when I arrived at MCAS I was pleasantly surprised by the nature and teaching style of teacher Abdsalam (aka Siba). Abdsalam is an extremely calm, competent and very humble teacher, with an excellent sense of humour and brilliant teaching style and structure that could take you from a complete beginner to advanced levels with a step-by-step approach. By the end of the first day, I was over the nerves of trying to learn Arabic in a one-to-one setting and infact I became very keen and enthusiastic - all thanks to the teacher! I enjoyed the lessons and learning so much that I have now been twice in two months for week longs lessons. Abdsalam is a fabulous teacher who can keep you interested and motivated in the lessons with his fantastic teaching style, sense of humour and encouragement. If I could take 6 months off work I would spend that time with MCAS and I am sure with the help and support MCAS provide I could become a fluent Arabic speaker in that time if not sooner! Overall fabulous experience with MCAS, with excellent teaching, friendly atmosphere, help and support always on hand even when it comes to accommodation, phone top-ups, best places to eat, sightseeing etc. Well done & Thank you MCAS! :O)

Yes, I recommend this program
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Martin
10/10

Awesome time

Along with my two housemates and Jihane we went to explore Meknes. We had a great time visiting the local town of Ifrane. A friend of a friend drove us around and we made it back to Mekness to meet up with Jihane. The food we ate with Jihane's family was incredible. They were wonderful hosts and gave us all a good impression of the Moroccan people. My two housemates and I enjoyed exploring Meknes with Jihane who knew all there was to know.

How can this program be improved?
Cost
Yes, I recommend this program
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Giacomo
10/10

Learning language and cultural

I have been studying the Arabic language (MSA) for 5 years now, but until when I attended the classes of MCAS with Abdelsalem I did know that I can use it for serious conversations. Through his patience and his methodology to force me out of comfort zone and try and express complexed concepts, we managed to talk about politics and religion, education and movies. Apart from the language improvement I have been really lucky to meet him and Ali, because their company and support is really precious... I am back in September ... and Rabat is a great place to spend time

Yes, I recommend this program
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Giusy
10/10

Wonderful experience

Even though at first I was a little bit scared, I was alone in a new country with a totally different culture and lifestyle, without knowing any darija word, it turned out to be one of the best experience ever. Ali, the director, is punctual and professional and Jihane, my teacher, she was not just a teacher, but a dear friend as well. Both of them always available for any kind of problem, they made me feel at home! I would like to come back as soon as I can ;)

How can this program be improved?
In my humble opinion it's a very good programm, they have a good method of teaching, different from the Italian one (in a positive way). Hence why, I wouldn't change a thing. It has been complementary for my studies and, at the same time, inspiring for my future!
Yes, I recommend this program
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Paul
10/10

Great Program!

Ali, Abdsalem, and Jihane are extremely professional, helpful, and friendly. They made arranging and carrying out my program of study extremely easy. When I had to make last minute changes, they were beyond accomodating.

When I arrived Ali was super considerate of my travel schedule and gave me a few hours to relax before giving me a survival orientation of my neighborhood and the school. Over the next few days, he showed me lots of great local eats and places of interest throughout Rabat and Morocco in general. I felt more like a personal guest than a student/visitor/tourist. Their hospitality and generosity make them stand out in my mind when I compare MCAS to other programs I've attended.

I strongly recommend MCAS to anyone wanting to study Arabic; I hope to return soon myself!

How can this program be improved?
Maybe provide free massages and pedicures? :) ha. Everything exceeded my expectations.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Claire
9/10

Great time in Rabat

I spent two weeks in Morocco on an AB Trip that was organized through MCAS. It was a great experience and I learned so much about Moroccan culture, language, ethnic and societal issues. I loved talking to Moroccan women, Sub-Saharan refugees and many others about the issues that face Morocco today. I have a much deeper understanding of the country and its culture. I can really only recommend the trip and visit to anyone.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Natalie
10/10

Great Experience Through MCAS

MCAS aka Moroccan Center for Arabic Studies was such an amazing experience and one I'll never ever forget. Everyone was so friendly and helpful and funny first of all and they were able to provide so much in the short two weeks I was there. Ali, the director of MCAS works very hard to make sure everything runs smoothly but is so entertaining and fun and just made the shock of being in such a different place so much more comfortable. I actually lost my luggage for a week and Ali was so helpful, calling the airport everyday, having a driver take me to the airport and go in with me to translate and help, it was great. The program I went through was through my school so most things I did were planned to have an educational background. The most amazing and inspiring part of being in Morocco was going to Orient Occidental Foundation which was possible through MCAS. Orient Occidental is a center for Sub Saharan refugees. The people actually teenagers I met and the stories I heard were unforgettable and they inspired me to want to do more to help both back in the United States and even possibly going back to Morocco. Of course through MCAS you can do way more touristy things like ride camels and see more touristy cities and what not but the social justice is what intrigued me and was my underlying purpose for going (but the food and markets were a plus).
I also took Arabic classes every day 3 hours a day and that too can be adjusted but Siba was an amazing teacher and so patient and funny and it made learning an entirely different language easier.
I have mentioned before, this trip was an incredible experience and I would recommend MCAS to any and everyone. I felt safe, I had a great time, I learned so much about the culture and the city and the people in it and it was just overall fantastic. :)

How can this program be improved?
The only thing I would say would be to have more heaters when it was cold because people in the group did get sick but I was fine. That's the only thing.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Makda
10/10

An inspiring and impactful experience

My experience in Morocco was absolutely amazing. I came as part of a school trip that focuses on social justice issues, and we partnered with MCAS to take Arabic language classes as well as two different non profit organizations; one focused on women's education and the other focused on refugee rights. First off, MCAS was such an amazing organization during our two weeks in Rabat. From the amazing hospitality, to the genuine friendships formed from with the MCAS staff, it was such a blessing to be able to work with such an organization. The Arabic classes were fantastic and allowed us to get a great foundational understanding of the language. Working with the various community partner was extremely impactful, and I thank MCAS for being the bridge that brought us together with the organizations. In addition, when doing workshops with the various populations, the MCAS staff always accompanied us and served as amazing multilingual translators. Our housing accommodation worked out perfectly, and living in the Kasbah in Rabat was beautiful. But ultimately, the kind hearted and dedicated spirit of the MCAS staff is what is going to stick with me the most and is something I value the most. They provided us with a unique culture experience which is something very special. I am so incredibly thankful to have had the opportunity to learn and immerse myself in Moroccan culture and the various social justice issues examined, and I must say MCAS was the most amazing host organization. I hope to return to Morocco soon, and I am very thankful for MCAS providing such a remarkable experience of leaning and serving in Morocco.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Lisa
10/10

Thanks for an amazing trip!

Ali and the whole MCAS staff are absolutely amazing!! They went way out of their way to make our trip run smoothly. They have a great sense of humor and I really enjoyed my time with them. The organization has many connections in Rabat and they know the area very well. I never once felt unsafe or that I was not getting enough support MCAS. My trip was filled with educational opportunities, interactions with the community, cultural experiences, personal growth, and great food! Thank you so much for everything MCAS.

How can this program be improved?
Fewer hours spent on Arabic and more time working with the community.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Giovanna
10/10

Amazing Experience

This is a truly incredible experience that I would recommend to everyone interested. It was a very inclusive experience with learning Arabic in the morning and volunteering in the afternoon. The placements we had for volunteering mad such an impact in my life and I want to incorporate it in my life. We worked with an organization that help refugees and because of this trip I know that I want to dedicate my life to fighting for refugee rights. I learned so much in two weeks. In a culture that seems so different, I was in awe of how at home I felt. The staff is very welcoming and made us feel like family. They always made sure our group was safe while still allowing us to explore and feel comfortable in our new setting. I wish I could have stayed longer!

How can this program be improved?
It was very good that we had so much to do, but a little more free time would have been good as well so we could see more of where we were living. Other than that the program was perfect! We were able to experience so much in so little time.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Sophie
10/10

Amazing time in Morocco

At MCAS they truly know how to make everyone feel welcome. After a short two weeks, I felt at home in Morocco. There was never a moment I felt unsafe or uncomfortable. Not only did we get to immerse ourselves in the bright, colorful culture but we also got to spend an amazing amount of time with multiple organizations that have changed my life. We also got to take Arabic classes almost everyday we were there which taught us about the culture and also helped us communicate while we were out exploring. From the translators, teachers, coordinators to everyone else, the entire MCAS community was amazing. I would recommend this organization to anyone looking to experience Morocco in its entirety. It was such a positive environment. Thank you so much for this life-changing opportunity MCAS and facilitating the adventure of a lifetime! Hopefully I will be back to Morocco and MCAS very very soon.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Isabella
10/10

A Supporting and Welcoming Environment

The group that I traveled in was large, and sometimes hard to handle. At MCAS they were so helpful and accommodating I never had to worry about anyone getting left behind or left out. They organized an excellent educational program for us that allowed us to host workshops for Moroccan women and refugees. The only thing we had to worry about was workshop content, which they helped facilitate through translators because most of us could not speak Arabic/French. The translators were so charismatic and willing to participate and have fun with us, they really helped us have a powerful experience.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Grace
10/10

Life Changing Experience

Before arriving in Morocco I anticipated this program to simply offer arabic courses and interviews with various community members, but I was happily surprised that I received even more out of the program. The arabic classes every morning were extremely helpful and our fantastic teacher, Siba, made the course fun and engaging. Aside from the language immersion, Ali and Jihane were absolutely stellar in their ability to translate all of the visitors we had and their knowledge on multiple subjects. I was most impacted by the interviews MCAS set up for us because I learned peoples' stories on such an intimate level. Again, Ali and Jihane's trilingual ability made the trip so much easier than it would have been if we did not have a translator. I am so grateful for the experience and I hope to come back soon.

How can this program be improved?
Nothing at all. I wish I spent more time
Yes, I recommend this program
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Julie
10/10

Take this Trip!

This was a trip of a lifetime. Don't get me wrong, I have traveled a lot, but no other trip has given me the opportunity to change my thinking about an entire religion. This trip was focused on service and experiences in Morocco. It had nothing to do with religion, but being around such a beautifully faithful, kind, loving people was a joy. All of the negative influence of the media was quickly washed away. This is what was happening to me in my heart while I was shopping in the market for awesome souvenirs and very fresh food, when I was driving through beautiful countryside or riding a camel in the Sahara, while I was being served my new favorite foods in amazing Riads or Dars, while I was walking through and learning about the ancient madinas, while I was learning how to write my name in Arabic or pronounce words and phrases by a kind and patient (and funny) teacher. The Moroccans are pleased to share what they have. Their culture is old and beautiful. I would highly recommend taking this trip. I, in fact, hope to take it again myself!

How can this program be improved?
I am a quick paced traveler. I rise early and go to bed late while in a different country. I want to see as much as possible and experience everything I can. Others do not feel this way perhaps so my feedback may not apply to everyone. I would have had less down time. There wasn't a whole lot, honestly but I would like to use every minute for something new. When traveling I have a simple motto, " I will rest when I get home." I can't wait to get back and learn some more!
Yes, I recommend this program

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Meet the Alumni

About Moroccan Center for Arabic Studies

MCAS is an Arabic language center committed to teaching Arabic as a foreign language so as to serve as a window into the culture of any Arabic speaking country.

Our mission is to make sure that the Arabic courses taught at MCAS will enable our...