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Arabic and Spanish BA (Full time) 2018 start

  • Overview

    Spanish and Arabic are major world languages, and each has its own rich cultural heritage. If you have an A-level in Spanish, this exciting Joint Honours degree will allow you to build on those skills while learning Arabic from scratch.

    Core modules will give you the chance to improve your language skills and discover Arab, Islamic, Spanish and Latin American history and culture. You’ll then shape your degree to suit your interests, as you choose from a wide range of optional modules exploring different topics in depth. You’ll even spend a year in an Arabic-speaking country and a term in Spain to experience life in each culture.

    You could study Latin American cinema or the workings of the Arab media, or you could look at Spain’s transition to democracy alongside popular revolts in the Middle East and North Africa. There’s even the chance to try a completely different language from scratch, or explore a career in translation or interpreting.

    Specialist resources

    Leeds offers great facilities for language students. Our fully-equipped Language Centre hosts digital language labs, audio/video practice booths and Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL). Our Interpreter Training Suites also offer you the chance to explore a career in interpreting, and our Electronic Resource Information Centre houses specialised computing facilities to support translation studies.

    Our world-class library resources include a huge variety of books and academic journals around the areas of Middle East studies and the politics, societies and cultures of the Middle East, as well as a wealth of audio-visual materials. The University Library runs a full training programme to help you exploit them. In addition, our archives contain 500 Arabic manuscripts and 10,000 archaeological artefacts, ranging from Pharaonic to early Palestinian eras.

    For SPLAS students, the most exciting resources we have are the cultural branches of the governments of Spain and Portugal – the Cervantes and Camões Institutes have branches on campus, as does the cultural arm of the Catalan autonomous government, the Ramon Llull Institute. The institutes seek to promote language teaching and greater understanding of Spanish-speaking, Lusophone and Catalan cultures around the world. Working with our degree programmes, they host many cultural events and academic activities for our students.

  • Course content

    A Joint Honours degree allows you to study the same core topics as students on each Single Honours course, but you’ll take fewer options and discovery modules so you can fit in both subjects.

    You’ll spend your first year taking intensive language classes to build your knowledge of Arabic, while consolidating your written and spoken Spanish. You’ll also be introduced to the history and culture of Islam, Arab states, Spain and Latin America, and you’ll take one of our Cornerstone modules to bring your two subjects together. You’ll even have the chance to learn a completely new language, from Catalan and Portuguese to Hebrew, Persian and Mandarin.

    This foundation will prepare you for your second year, which you’ll spend at a university in an Arabic-speaking country where you can hone your language skills. You’ll return to Leeds to continue with your language classes and choose from a range of optional modules in both subjects, before spending another term at a Spanish university.

    By the time you come back to Leeds for your final year, you’ll have improved language skills and much deeper cultural awareness to bring to your studies. You’ll take advanced classes in both languages while choosing from an even broader range of options on topics like translation, Middle East politics or identity in Chicano cinema. You’ll also have the choice to apply your skills to an independently researched dissertation.

    Course structure

    These are typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our Terms and conditions.

    Year 1

    You’ll choose from a wide range of optional modules while maintaining a balance across your subjects. Follow the links to the Programme Catalogue for more example optional modules and the full course structure.

    Compulsory modules

    • Beginning Arabic 1 20 credits
    • Beginning Arabic 2 20 credits
    • Early and Medieval Islamic History 20 credits
    • IT for LCS Students 5 credits
    • Practical Language Skills in Spanish 1 20 credits

    Optional modules

    A sample of the optional modules are shown below. Please contact us for more details of the requirements and choices available.

    • Introduction to Audio-Visual Culture 20 credits
    • Language: Structure and Sound 20 credits
    • World Histories 20 credits
    • Intercultural Competence: Theory and Application 20 credits
    • Politics, Culture and Society 20 credits
    • Worlds of Literature 20 credits
    • Discourse, Culture and Identity 20 credits
    • The Historical Development of Spain and Hispanic America 20 credits
    • Introduction to the Cultural Production of Spain and Spanish-America 20 credits

    Year 2

    Compulsory modules

    • Year Abroad 120 credits

    Year 3

    Compulsory modules

    • Advanced Arabic Grammar and Translation 15 credits
    • Essential Skills in Practical Arabic 15 credits
    • Practical Language Skills in Spanish 2 15 credits
    • Term Abroad 30 credits

    Optional modules

    A sample of the optional modules are shown below. Please contact us for more details of the requirements and choices available.

    • Culture and Society in the Arab World 15 credits
    • Modern Middle Eastern History 15 credits
    • Contemporary Arab Media 15 credits
    • Latin America since Independence (c1800 - c1930) 15 credits
    • The Spanish regional Melting Pot: the old same History? 15 credits
    • Issues in Hispanic and Lusophone Cinema 15 credits

    Year 4

    Compulsory modules

    • Advanced Skills in Arabic Language 20 credits
    • Practical Language Skills in Spanish 3 20 credits
    • Final year Project

    Optional modules

    A sample of the optional modules are shown below. Please contact us for more details of the requirements and choices available.

    • Arab Drama on Stage and Screen 20 credits
    • Islam and Modernity 20 credits
    • Middle Eastern Politics: Regimes, Societies and Conflict 20 credits
    • Spanish in an Economic and Business Context 20 credits
    • From Toussaint to Obama: Resistance in the African Diaspora 20 credits
    • New Media in Latin America 20 credits

    For more information on typical modules, read Arabic and Spanish BA in the course catalogue

    Broadening your academic horizons

    At Leeds we want you to benefit from the depth and breadth of the University's expertise, to prepare you for success in an ever-changing and challenging world. This course gives you the opportunity to broaden your learning by studying discovery modules. Find out more on the Broadening webpages.

    Learning and teaching

    The School of Languages, Cultures and Societies is home to expert tutors who are at the forefront of research. We use different teaching and learning methods to help you benefit from their knowledge and experience, including lectures, seminars, tutorials and occasionally workshops. However, we attach a lot of importance to independent study – it’s a vital way to gain critical and research skills.


    We also use different types of assessment. Although they normally include exams and essays, some modules may also treat oral presentations and group work as assessed components. We offer plenty of support too: for example, you’ll be able to attend extra classes on issues such as public speaking and exam technique throughout the course of your degree.

  • Entry requirements, fees and applying

    Entry requirements

    A-level: AAB

    including A in Spanish

    • Access to HE Diploma

      Pass diploma with 60 credits overall, including at least 45 credits at level 3, of which 30 credits must be at Distinction and 15 credits at Merit or higher. An interview and a piece of written work may also be required. This course has additional subject specific requirements. Please contact the Admissions Office for more information.

    • BTEC

      We will consider this qualification in combination with other qualifications. Please contact the Admissions Office for more information.

    • Cambridge Pre-U

      D3, M1, M1 including D3 in Spanish.

    • International Baccalaureate

      35 points overall with 16 at Higher Level including 6 in Spanish at Higher Level.

    • Irish Highers (Leaving Certificate)

      H2, H2, H2, H2, H3, H3 including H2 in Spanish

    • Scottish Highers / Advanced Highers

      AB in Advanced Highers including A in Spanish and AABBB in Highers, or A in Spanish in Advanced Highers and AABBB in Highers.

    • Welsh Baccalaureate

      The Welsh Baccalaureate is not typically included in the academic conditions of an offer made to you for this course. If you choose to undertake the Welsh Baccalaureate we would strongly encourage you to draw upon these experiences within your personal statement, as your qualification will then be taken into account both when your application is initially considered by the selection panel and again when reviewed by the admissions tutor at the time your A-level results are passed to us.

    • Other Qualifications

      European Baccalaureate: 80% including 85% in Spanish

    Read more about UK and Republic of Ireland accepted qualifications or contact the School’s Undergraduate Admissions Team.

    Where an applicant is taking the EPQ in a relevant subject this might be considered alongside other Level 3 qualifications and may attract an alternative offer in addition to the standard offer. If you are taking A Levels, this would be ABB at A Level including A in Spanish and grade A in the EPQ.

    Alternative entry

    We’re committed to identifying the best possible applicants, regardless of personal circumstances or background.

    Access to Leeds is an alternative admissions scheme which accepts applications from individuals who might be from low income households, in the first generation of their immediate family to apply to higher education, or have had their studies disrupted.

    Find out more about Access to Leeds and alternative admissions.

    Typical Access to Leeds offer: BBB at A Level including Spanish and pass Access to Leeds


    We accept a range of international equivalent qualifications. For more information, contact the School of Languages, Cultures and Societies admissions team.

    International Foundation Year Programme

    International students who do not meet the academic requirements for undergraduate study may be able to study the University of Leeds International Foundation Year. This gives you the opportunity to study on campus, be taught by University of Leeds academics and progress onto a wide range of Leeds undergraduate courses. Find out more about International Foundation Year programmes.

    English language requirements

    IELTS 7.0 overall, with no less than 6.5 in any component. For other English qualifications, read English language equivalent qualifications.

    International students who do not meet the English language requirements for the programme may be able to study an English for Academic Purposes pre-sessional course with a progression route to the degree programme. For information and entry requirements, read Pre-sessional programmes.

    How to apply

    Apply to this course through UCAS. The institution code for the University of Leeds is L23. Check the deadline for applications on the UCAS website.

    International students apply through UCAS in the same way as UK/EU students. Our network of international representatives can help you with your application. If you’re unsure about the application process, contact the admissions team for help.

    Read about visas, immigration and other information in International students. We recommend that international students apply as early as possible to ensure that they have time to apply for their visa.

    Admissions policy

    School of Languages, Cultures and Societies Undergraduate Admissions Policy


    UK/EU: See fees section below

    International: £17,500 (per year)

    For UK and non-UK EU full-time students starting in 2018, the fee for 2018/19 will be £9,250. 

    The fee for undergraduate students starting in 2019 will be confirmed in September 2018.

    The fee may increase in future years of your course in line with inflation, and as permitted by law. For example, the increase of 2.8% in 2017/18 was based on the government’s forecast for the RPI-X measure of inflation.

    The UK government has confirmed that non-UK EU students in 2018-19 will have home fee status and be eligible for UK government student loans. The UK government has not confirmed the situation for future years, so keep checking our website for updates.

    If you take a study abroad or work placement year, you’ll pay a reduced tuition fee during this period. For more information, see Study abroad and work placement tuition fees and loans.

    Read more about paying fees and charges.

    Additional cost information

    There may be additional costs related to your course or programme of study, or related to being a student at the University of Leeds. Read more about additional costs

    Financial support

    If you have the talent and drive, we want you to be able to study with us, whatever your financial circumstances. There is help for students in the form of loans and non-repayable grants from the University and from the government. Find out more in our Undergraduate funding overview.

  • Career opportunities

    Arabic and Spanish are widely spoken across the globe and a Joint Honours degree in the two subjects will open doors to a wide range of careers at home and abroad. You’ll also gain valuable transferable skills that employers actively seek.

    You’ll be a confident communicator who can present and defend your views clearly, as well as having strong research and analytical skills. Spending time abroad will demonstrate that you are independent and adaptable, but you’ll also work well within a team. Managing two different subjects will also equip you with organisational skills.

    Graduates have gone into a wide range of careers in the UK and elsewhere. Many have pursued postgraduate study and further training in language-based fields like translation or interpreting. Others have gone into business and finance, the creative industries, education, law, journalism, publishing and the charity sector.

    Careers support

    We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. That’s one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.

    Leeds for Life is our unique approach to helping you make the most of University by supporting your academic and personal development. Find out more at the Leeds for Life website.

    The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.

  • Study abroad and work placements

    Residence Abroad

    You’ll spend your second year studying an Arabic language course at one of our partner universities, either the Arabic Language Institute in Fes (ALIF), Morocco, or the Alexandria Centre for Languages (ACL) in Egypt.

    Then you’ll spend a term in Spain, studying a dedicated language course in Léon or Granada. Both periods abroad are fantastic opportunities to immerse yourself in the local culture and gain valuable experience to inform your studies.

    Read more about Residence Abroad in Arabic, Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies

    Read more about Residence Abroad in Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies