Arabic Placement Exam Information

The Arabic Program at the Bi-Co requires that all incoming students who have previously studied Arabic in high school, in another college, or who are heritage speakers, and wish to continue their studies take the Arabic Placement Exam during the summer.

The exam consists of some basic grammar exercises, various brief translations (Arabic to English, and English to Arabic), a reading comprehension section, and a short essay. In addition to completing the placement exam, students are asked to meet with the Arabic faculty at the Academic Fair during Customs New Student Orientation for a brief and informal conversation in order to ascertain fluency and knowledge of Arabic.

  • Where to find exam and additional information: Moodle > Course Overview
  • Time limit: 120 minutes total
  • Contact: Professor Manar Darwish,
  • Deadline: July 12

What is the purpose of the Arabic Placement Test?

The purpose of the Arabic Placement Test is to assess your readiness for our Intensive Arabic courses and help determine whether you should enroll in First- or Second-Year Arabic.

What do I need to study before taking the exam?

You do not really need to study any new material. This exam is general and assumes you are familiar with vocabulary relating to your nuclear and extended family, university life, the weather, travel, relationships, social and political issues, and similar topics that you would have covered in your previous classes.

In respect to grammar, and to test out of first year, you should be familiar with the following: noun-adjective agreement; nominal and verbal sentences (al-jumla al-ismiyya wa al-jumla al-filiyya); pronouns and pronominal suffixes and their uses; past, present (al-mudari’ al-marfu wa al-mansub wa al-majzum), and future verb conjugations; subject-verb agreement; the plural, negating verbs; and al-Idafa construction.

You have up to 120 minutes to complete the exam. Remember that you are bound by the Bryn Mawr Honor Code/Haverford Honor Code and may not consult dictionaries, websites or written materials during the online test. In addition, you are permitted to take the exam only once, so please follow the instructions below very carefully.

The exam has nine parts, all in formal Arabic (also known as Modern Standard Arabic/ MSA and Fusha). The various exam questions will test your comprehension, vocabulary, grammar/verb conjugation, reading comprehension, writing and translation. The headings are written in Arabic and English. The verb conjugation section has the verbs given in the past tense in the he/ هو form. Bryn Mawr College students must complete the placement exam by July 12. Haverford College students must complete it by Aug. 8.

The exam is posted as a PDF. Download the file, write your answers, then scan your test. Please upload a copy of your test with your answers to the Moodle site. If you have questions, please do not hesitate to contact Ustadza Manar Darwish ( She will contact you in turn with the results.


Contact Us

Arabic Program

Old Library 103
Bryn Mawr College
101 N. Merion Avenue
Bryn Mawr, PA 19010-2899
Phone: 610-526-5198
Fax: 610-526-7479

Penny ArmstrongDirector
Phone: 610-526-5386

Manar Darwish, Instructor and Coordinator
Phone: 610-526-5669

Leslie Diarra, Academic Administrative Assistant
Phone: (610) 526-5198