Design your own self-directed learning experience for Arabic

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Self directed learning for Arabic

15 Essential Skills of an Arabic Learner, including self-directed learningTake charge of your own Arabic language acquisition by directing your own program of self-directed learning. Many times, you may not have access to classes or programs that provide you with the kind of instruction that you would like to have, and will need to customize your own approach. Even when you are actively engaged in class work, take control of your learning by building your own self-led framework of Arabic instruction that combines multiple learning strategies into an overall plan.

“…those learners that are self-directed and highly motivated will jump on these opportunities…”  (Aiyub Palmer)

This article is based on the 15 Essential Skills of an Arabic Learner.

Design your own self-directed learning experience


For most of us, when we set out to learn Arabic we don’t think of self-directed learning. Our first step is to research what programs and institutes are available to take us where we want to go. We look for the best instruction we can possibly find. We hope for a solution that includes all of the features we will need to be successful, including great materials, skilled teachers, opportunities for practice, and practical application of the skills we learn.

What we are looking for is a person or program that will lead us in our Arabic language learning. The problem is that it is hard to find people or programs like this. Which is why we need to be ready to engage in self-directed learning. Self-directed learners can design their own Arabic language learning experiences.

I distinctly remember when my first year and a half of “official” Arabic language learning at the American University in Cairo came to a close. I had reached a point where I did not have the time or focus needed to stay in the program. But I recall thinking something along the lines of “this should be easy – I live in an Arabic speaking city and I’ll just keep growing in my Arabic as I use it”. While living in an Arabic speaking environment has been helpful, I came to realize that there’s a lot more to successfully learning the language than just soaking it in. To be successful, you need to be a self-directed learner.

Self-directed learning, whether for a language or any other area, means that “the learner takes responsibility for their learning, choosing the content, resources, time, place, activities, and pace of their learning” ( . It doesn’t necessarily mean that you learn alone, but that you make the key decisions that organize and direct your learning experience. Continue reading “Design your own self-directed learning experience for Arabic”