Study Arabic in Palestine with The Excellence Center

Video and Photos

Dinner with Excellence staff
Dinner with Excellence staff
Dinner at my teacher Ibrahim's house
Dinner at my teacher Ibrahim's house
Road trip
Road trip
Center
Center
Excellence Center certificate
Excellence Center certificate
Excellence Center certificate
Excellence Center certificate
Excellence Center certificate
Excellence Center certificate
April feast
April feast

About

The Excellence Center would like to invite you to participate in the Study Arabic Intensive Program in Hebron. The Arabic Program combines studying Arabic with an immersion into the Palestinian culture and history.

International participants study the Arabic language with Palestinian teachers in interactive ways. Language studies include learning the Palestinian dialect and Modern Standard Arabic. We offer Arabic courses for all levels from starters to advanced learners. The Excellence Center provides international students with all necessary books needed in the course.

The Study Arabic Program is a singular opportunity for students searching to make a unique difference in their lives. While studying Arabic in Hebron, they are also involved in community development activities that are organized by the Excellence Centre.

The program is an optimal opportunity that gives an intimate, first-hand experience of Palestinian life and the political realities of that life in Hebron

Highlights
  • Stay with a Palestinian family in Hebron
  • Engagement with Palestinian youth in cultural and educational activities
  • Visit unique tourist attractions with a non-touristic perspective
  • Live and engage in the Palestinian daily life
  • Meet new people and make new Palestinian and international friends

Join Our Family in Palestine and Germany

Welcome to the Excellence Center: People who are between 18 – 75 years old are eligible to participate in all of our programs in Palestine and Germany. All nationalities and majors are welcome! You do not have to have any degree to join us. The Excellence Center hosts internationals year-round. Participants decide when they would like to start and end their programs. We are very flexible when it comes to starting and ending dates.

Questions & Answers

Reviews

9.41 Rating
based on 117 reviews
  • Academics 9.1
  • Support 9.4
  • Fun 8.9
  • Housing 8.9
  • Safety 9.2
  • Instruction 9.4
  • Support 9.2
  • Fun 9.2
  • Housing 8.7
  • Value 9.6
Showing 1 - 8 of 117
Default avatar
Alison
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

3 Weeks with the Excellence Center

I have been messing about with Arabic for several years now.
I spent three weeks on the intensive Arabic course at the Excellence Centre, and to my delight, my Arabic has improved enormously. I can communicate at last !

The Excellence Centre provides language classes, accommodation, volunteering and recreational activities. Everything can be tailored to your needs : the language learners and the volunteers I met at the Centre came from a variety of backgrounds and age groups, each of us having a different life experience and varying levels of Arabic. Everyone had a personalised programme according to their interests. This flexibility is one of the strengths of the Excellence Centre.

The people of Hebron are very welcoming indeed. Tourists and foreign language students are never harassed in the streets, on the contrary, we are greeted in the friendliest manner possible.

You can spend time in Hebron immersing yourself in language and culture, barely coming into contact with the political situation. For those interested in Human Rights and the problems of the Occupation, there is ample opportunity to dig deeper and to engage in solidarity actions. Again, the Excellence Centre offers a range of activities, after that, its all up to you !

I thoroughly enjoyed my time here, discovering a fascinating city while improving my language skills.

Alison aged 48, from France.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Just one word of warning to future students : if you come in the winter, bring plenty of warm clothes !
Default avatar
Jasmine
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

The best intensive Arabic course in Palestine

My name's Jasmine, 26 years old from Manchester UK. I wanted to visit Palestine alone, and do an intensive Arabic course. For two weeks I did three hours per day with Bisaan -- wow she is an amazing teacher. It is one-on-one teaching and all my needs were met.

It is completely safe here. Even though I have been learning about Palestine for years, and have Palestinian friends in the UK, I was still a little nervous to come alone. After this experience I can say it is 100% safe, the people are SO welcoming, and I would recommend it to anyone, any age, from any place.

Default avatar
Curtis
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

High quality Arabic lessons at the Excellence Center in Hebron

I lived in Hebron for two months from November 5, 2019 to January 5, 2020. During that time I took five two hour individual lessons at the Excellence Center. My teacher was Dua'a Qasim. I benefitted greatly from those lessons and learned a great deal. I recommend Ms. Qasim most highly. She was highly focused and the time was spent efficiently. She used Whats App quite effectively to give me audio homework for further study and I appreciated that. Her love of the language and enthusiasm was infectious. My time at the Excellence Center with Ms. Qasim was both enjoyable and profitable.

Default avatar
Mason
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

My Stay At The Excellence Center

Great time spent at the excellence center. I had 5 lessons with Nadine over a week. I learned so much and was provided a free tour from the center into H2. I felt incredibly safe in the area: the hospitality is just amazing in Hebron. The coffeeshop across the center started giving me free tea and coffee simply because I had been there frequently. Great stay, great city, great program.

Default avatar
Mason
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

My experience with the Excellence Center in Hebron

I spent 5 days at the Excellence Center receiving 1-on-1 Arabic lesson with Nadine. The instruction was superb. I felt free to change the lesson method how I pleased and Nadine was sure to switch from vocab, to writing, to listening comprehension with videos/conversation as I pleased. I have lived in Palestine before and have not felt safer than I have at the Excellence Center. The neighborhood is clean, the people are warm-hearted and hospitable and the environment is safe and caring.

What would you improve about this program?
Living situation can be very cold.
Default avatar
Remi
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

My experience with the Excellence Center in Hebron

My name is Remi, I from France and I learning arabic 3 weeks in Hebron

The school is very good and welcoming, has a great location in the center of Hebron and close to everything.

The breakfast served every day is great and allows us to spend sometime with teachers and other students.

Bisanne is an excellent teacher with a lot of energy and passion to learn arabic and speak about Palestine, I had a great time with her

Hebron is a very safe city with a part occupied by the israëlis but I met really welcoming people, the tours organized by the center excellence are great for visiting and understanding the history of the city.

Just for those we want to come in winter, it's cold to bring warm clothes.

Rémi, french

Default avatar
Remi
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

My experience with the Excellence Center in Hebron

My name is Remi, from France, I study arabic at the excellence center during three weeks.
he school is very good and welcoming, has a great location in the center of Hebron and close to everything.

The breakfast served every day is great and allows us to spend sometime with teachers and other students.

Bisanne is an excellent teacher with a lot of energy and passion to learn arabic and speak about Palestine, I had a great time with her

Hebron is very safe city with a part occupied by the israëlis but I met really welcoming people, the tours organized by the center excellence are great for visiting and understanding the history of the city.

Just for those we want to come in winter, it's cold to bring warm clothes.

Default avatar
Adam
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Intermediate Adult Learner

My name is Adam, and I’m a 31 year old product manager. With a degree in Physics and a M.S in Computer Science from the University of Chicago, I take my education very seriously, and I have found my learning experience here in Hebron at the Excellence Center extremely valuable. I was focused on conversational Arabic (Shami dialect) for 3 weeks. Without any formal education in Arabic I’ve had to rely on the value of the books, and authentic materials I’ve been able to unearth to bring myself to a roughly intermediate level. Approximately 3 months prior to my study I worked with a private tutor before coming to the excellence center, who prepared my conversational skills in the Shami dialect.

I came here expecting only a moderate amount of structure in which to practice my speaking skills, and to seat my current knowledge of Arabic in some real world experiences navigating a predominantly Arabic speaking part of the world. Having only 3 weeks off from my full time work, I spent quite some time searching the internet for opportunities available to get the most out of a language learning experience, and the excellence center was far and above the most transparently advertised, and clearly well trodden destination for language learning.

What I found when I arrived was:
1.) There instructions to get to and from Tel Aviv were quite clear
2.) There was a very warm and welcoming staff - in spite of having visitors from far away come and go daily, maintained the hospitality the region is famous for. Unless my lesson was going way over time, I never once felt like I was ‘someones job’
3.) The language instructors are quite serious about imparting well spoken Arabic (in my case colloquial), and a love of the language itself.

I had 3 weeks of private speaking lessons for 3 hours, which helped me to acquire an innumerable amount of patterns for sentence structure, new vocabulary, and constant repetition (my instructor Shayma was extremely good at reminding me of my mistakes, and guiding me towards self sufficiency in my speaking and listening). We focused on vocabulary and topics of interest to me (family, work, daily life, and literary analysis), but she clearly could have directed a lesson for someone with less experience in the language, or without a preference for topics of interest. In fact after observing my weaknesses for our first 2 full days of class, she stopped our normal day to day to deliver a more structured lesson going over some of the weaknesses in my conjugation and grammar that she observed.

These lessons were re-enforced by the presence of an extremely warm community around the center for excellence, who were remarkably patient with my my broken Arabic (unless they were trying to sell me something ;). When dinner or lunch, people would often patiently ask me many questions about my life and experiences as an American in their Arabic, and help me in my replies which gave a great number of opportunities to re-enforce what I was learning in the classroom.

While I was quite worried that the presence of other English speakers with me at the center would harm my progress, I was quite happy that it usually enriched my experience - especially being lucky enough to be here with more accomplished linguists than I who could point to some excellent resources for learning Arabic, and about the Middle East in general.

Additionally, while I didn’t sign up for any volunteer work or tutoring, I was very happy to have an opportunity to help out with 2 or 3 English club sessions. I was immediately charmed by the classroom of 30 odd students, and enjoyed teaching them a little English using my broken Arabic, which they too seemed to find fun.

Finally, there is usually a great deal of preconceived notions about the safety and material wealth of Palestine and the Palestinian people. In this matter I can only speak as a tall white man with an American passport (as I would tell anyone for any place in the world). I found the journey extremely safe, as well as my stay here, and in some ways much safer than places I might frequent in my own neighborhoods in Minneapolis or Chicago. For example, I would never leave my backpack at a table at a coffee shop while using the restroom, but here, I rarely worried about this, and eventually stopped worrying completely.

I would highly recommend the excellence center to future travelers whether language learning or looking for experience in tutoring. Come with an open mind and heart, and you will find the same waiting here.