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The Arabic placement test is required if you have any prior knowledge of Arabic and wish to take Arabic classes at Carolina. If you do not intend to take Arabic classes, but just wish to satisfy the Global Language requirement, please refer to the Language Placement website to review the possible options for meeting the requirement.

The Arabic placement test is normally an online one that may be taken at any time.  However, it is temporarily unavailable at the moment due to the transition from Sakai to Canvas.  Please check back in a week or so.

Arabic placement FAQ

All you need is something to write with.
Equipment you will need to take the test:
— Paper and pencil;
— Camera or scanner; you will need to scan/photograph and upload your handwritten paper.
— Computer with working microphone so you can make a voice recording.
If you’re an incoming new Carolina student,  please wait to take this test until you have created your Onyen and have it working. If you are not a UNC student, please email the Arabic placement coordinator, Ms. Doria El Kerdany, for help to access the test (and note that if it’s summer, it may take her a while to get back to you).
The online test has two parts.

The first part is reading and listening comprehension.  It includes:

  • A questionnaire about your Arabic language background (you type the answers in English);
  • An Arabic listening comprehension section (multiple choice, matching, and true/false questions)
  • An Arabic reading comprehension section (multiple choice, matching, and true/false questions)

The second part is writing and speaking proficiency:

  • The writing portion must be handwritten (not typed) in Arabic. The test will give you prompts for what to write about, and after you’ve done it, you’ll scan or take a photo of your writing and upload it to the test.
  • For the speaking portion, there will be some questions and you’ll record your answers. You may use any type of spoken Arabic (formal or dialect).

That’ll be it for most people, but a few students may be asked to also do an oral interview (via zoom, or in person if during the semester).

This placement test is a proficiency test; there is no need to prepare for it.  The result should indicate your current level of command of the language, and thus determine the most appropriate course placement for you.

If you take the online placement test by You should receive the result
Friday before FDOC in August By FDOC
Friday of the first week of class By the following Monday
October 1 Before registration for spring begins
Friday before FDOC in January By FDOC
Friday of the first week of class By the following Monday
March 1 Before registration for fall begins
April 30 By May 15

The above times are minimum guidelines. It’s always possible you’ll receive your result much sooner, so we recommend taking the placement test as soon as you’re ready to do so.

If you are taking the placement test in order to possibly take a summer class, and it’s after April 30, please take the online test first and then contact Lori Harris.  Include your name, PID, and which  summer class you are hoping to place into.

Your first step should be to discuss it either with your teacher (if you’re attending the class you were placed into) or with the Arabic placement coordinator, Ms. Doria El Kerdany.

Placement is not a perfect science by any means, and every year we do usually make a few adjustments. If you don’t think the class you were placed in is the best level for you, we are always happy to discuss it and re-evaluate.  Ultimately, however, the department’s decision will be final.

Did you review the general placement FAQ? Many questions are answered there. If you still don’t find the answer, or otherwise need help with a placement issue, please contact Lori Harris.