Learn Arabic For Free

Learning Arabic for free is certainly possible, though I would always recommend buying a book or a course that can be used as the main tool of instruction. There are plenty of free resources online that can help you with studying Arabic at all levels, whether you are a beginner looking for basic language learning material or you have some experience with Arabic already and are looking for more advanced material. Explore the list of free stuff below at your leisure, but don’t let the urge to explore all of these links get in the way of your learning progress.

Just a quick word of warning: Arabic is a marvellous language, but also bewilderingly diverse. There are many different dialects spoken in the Arabic world today, with different vocabulary, sentence structures and accents. However, every Arab will understand some degree of Modern Standard Arabic (MSA or fuS-Ha), the language used in the media, in writing and on formal occasions. The resources below are primarily geared towards MSA, but I have included a section on dialects too.

Free Arabic Learning Resources

General courses

Madina Arabic Course

This is a thorough course in Modern Standard Arabic divided into three books and accompanied by audio recordings. All of these resources are available for download for free at http://abdurrahman.org/arabic/madina-arabic.html

Basic Arabic Course

While not as extensive as the Madina Arabic Course, this website provides a clear introduction to the Arabic writing system, grammar and vocabulary. http://www.arabic-course.com

Alphabet

Arabic Script Introduction

A quick and dirty intro to the Arabic script, written by yours truly. http://www.arabicgenie.com/resources/arabic-script

Omniglot Arabic Script

Omniglot provides a methodical overview at http://www.omniglot.com/writing/arabic.htm

Arabic alphabet with pronunciation

This ArabicGenie exclusive tool allows you to click on the 28 letters of the Arabic alphabet and hear the correct pronunciation. http://www.arabicgenie.com/arabicletters.html

Arabic Alphabet Pronunciation Videos

A compilation of videos on YouTube that make learning the Arabic alphabet a little more fun than usual, including various Alphabet songs. http://www.arabicgenie.com/alphabet-videos.html

Short vowels

What short vowels are and why you should care about these often marginalized little squiggles, explained by yours truly. http://www.arabicgenie.com/2009/09/arabic-short-vowels-what-you-need-to-know-about-tashkeel-and-harakaat

Short vowel mnemonics

An easy way to remember the sounds and shapes of the short vowels. http://www.arabicgenie.com/2009/09/an-easy-way-to-remember-the-short-vowels

The Magic Key To The Arabic Alphabet

Of course, you could also purchase a copy of my ebook on learning the Arabic alphabet, The Magic Key To The Arabic Alphabet. Although not free, I’d like to believe it is reasonably priced. http://www.arabicgenie.com/

Grammar

Arabic Nouns

Attempt at giving a thorough explanation of Arabic nouns. Maybe a little too thorough for beginners. http://www.arabicgenie.com/resources/arabic-grammar/arabic-nouns

Transparent Arabic Blog

Aziza provides clear explanations of many grammatical aspects of the language at http://www.transparent.com/arabic

Arabic Grammar Tutorials

Focussing mainly on verbs and their conjugation, this website has a plethora of information. http://multimediaquran.com/quran/arabic/

Arabic Verb Conjugator

An essential tool for those occasionally baffled by the bewildering array of conjugation rules. Just provide some basic information (root letters and verb form) to this almighty device and it will return a full conjugation chart. http://acon.baykal.be/index.php

Arabic Verb Conjugations

http://arabic.desert-sky.net/g_conj.html

Arabic Online website

Massive amount of articles dealing with many different topics of Arabic grammar. http://arabic.tripod.com/

Vocabulary

200 Arabic Words You Already ‘Know’

Initially I planned to sell this book on my website, but I decided to make it available for free as an instant download for the benefit of my visitors. The book contains over 200 Arabic words that are very similar in pronunciation to their English equivalents, thereby making learning the vocabulary very easy. http://www.arabicgenie.com/free-arabic-words

Arabic Phrases

For those looking for a quick primer on Arabic phrases that might come in handy on travel or at the local restaurant. http://www.arabicgenie.com/resources/arabic-phrases

Arabic Proverbs

As of yet incomplete list of proverbs and idioms taken from John Lewis Burckhardt’s book “The Manners And Customs Of The Modern Egyptians”. http://www.arabicgenie.com/resources/arabic-proverbs

Increase your Arabic Vocabulary

An article explaining how to enlarge your Arabic vocabulary. http://www.arabicgenie.com/2009/12/how-to-increase-your-arabic-vocabulary

Dialects

Arabic Dialects Overview

Essential reading for anyone trying to make sense of the dialectal situation on the Arabic speaking world. http://www.arabicgenie.com/resources/arabic-dialects

Egyptian Arabic Easy Words

A list of Egyptian Arabic words with pronunciation tips. http://www.arabicgenie.com/resources/arabic-dialects/egyptian-arabic

Egyptian Arabic A Quick Introduction

Primarily aimed at those with at least a rudimentary knowledge of Modern Standard Arabic (MSA), this two part series of articles aims to explain the main differences and idiosyncrasies of the Egyptian dialect.
Part 1 http://www.arabicgenie.com/2009/08/egyptian-arabic-a-quick-introduction
Part 2 http://www.arabicgenie.com/2009/10/egyptian-arabic-phrases-words

Speak Moroccan Arabic

A solid course on the Moroccan dialect. http://www.speakmoroccan.com/

Friends of Morocco Course

Provided in a number of PDF documents, this website has much of value for the learning of the Moroccan dialect. http://friendsofmorocco.org/arabictoc.htm

Syrian Colloquial Arabic

The first three chapters (including audio!) are provided free of charge by the author, with the remainder of the book available for purchase. Update: It seems that the author has limited the free options to the download of the first chapter of the book and accompanying audio. You need to subscribe to the newsletter to receive these. The first chapter is a good introduction to Syrian Arabic. http://syrianarabic.com/

Quranic (Koranic) Arabic

Introduction to Koranic Arabic

http://www.arabicgenie.com/resources/the-quran

Arabic Gems

Excellent Blog dealing with (mostly) Koranic Arabic. Unfortunately, it has been discontinued since April 2008. That shouldn’t keep you from exploring the archives though. http://arabicgems.wordpress.com/

Quran Transliteration

http://transliteration.org/quran/home.htm

Dictionaries

Overview of Arabic dictionaries

http://www.arabicgenie.com/2010/07/arabic-dictionaries

Sakhr Multilingual Dictionary

The best online English-Arabic-English dictionary by far. It’s extremely comprehensive and provides a lot of words to choose from. http://dictionary.sakhr.com/

Google Translate Dictionary

Many people might know that Google has a machine translation service, but they may not know that Google has a useful dictionary feature too. http://www.google.com/dictionary?source=translation&hl=en&langpair=ar|en

Wordreference dictionary

Often very useful in listing all the alternative translations for a word. http://www.wordreference.com/enar/

Miscellaneous

Learn Persian from Arabic

Aimed at those with a solid grasp of Arabic, this article explains how to make your knowledge of Arabic work for you when you are learning Persian. http://www.arabicgenie.com/2010/06/learn-persian-from-arabic

Perfect your Arabic Pronunciation

How to get closer to being mistaken for a native speaker (or at least be understood by Arabic speakers). http://www.arabicgenie.com/2009/12/perfect-arabic-pronunciation

Arabic TV

Al Arabiya

A great news channel with regional reach. http://www.livestation.com/channels/57-al_arabiya_arabic

Al Jazeera

You have probably heard of it, even if you haven’t studied Arabic before. http://www.livestation.com/channels/43-al-jazeera-arabic

Various other Arabic TV Channels

http://www.livewtv.com/arabic_tv.htm

The Arabic Student

An Excellent resource of various short clips taken from Arabic TV programmes or movies and annotated with transcriptions and translations. http://thearabicstudent.blogspot.com/  

This list is not exhaustive, so please let me know in the comments below if you’ve come across a useful website that might help others to learn Arabic for free.

Image credit for picture on top: Abdillah Wicaksono

3 thoughts on “Learn Arabic For Free

  1. Hello. 🙂

    I was wondering if you could translate this for me: “Don’t forget to love yourself”
    If you have time, it would be great!:) Thank you so much 🙂
    – Maria

  2. Hi
    Very useful link…thanks a lot…I also find a free app for my arabic lessons…I thought I share it…I downloaded to my iPhone…every day one word…actually they have like 6 languages what can be checked…www.eton-phrasebooks.com/…check out the website if you want… and good luck everybody with your language :))

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