Syracuse University



Amideast Morocco

Program Description


Rabat is one of Morocco’s “imperial cities,” and its modern capital. It is home to the leading educational institutions in the country and offers students opportunities to move from the shops and cafes of the “European” city to the winding alleys and exciting markets of the old medina in a few minutes’ walk. The AMIDEAST Education Abroad Program in Rabat offers a diverse set of courses, semi-intensive instruction in Modern Standard Arabic and Moroccan Arabic. You will either live with Arabic-speaking Moroccan families or in the student residence hall. Your classes will be at both AMIDEAST’s facilities in the bustling Agdal area of the city and in the buildings of AMIDEAST’s partner, the College of Letters and Humanities of Mohammed V University –Agdal, near the Royal Palace. Courses are taught by English-speaking Moroccan faculty members from the University and other universities in Rabat and neighboring cities.

Morocco & Rabat
Morocco, officially the Kingdom of Morocco, is a country located in North Africa. It has a population of nearly 39 million and an area of 710,850 km, including the disputed Western Sahara which is mainly under Moroccan administration. Morocco has a coast on the Atlantic Ocean that reaches into the Mediterranean Sea. It is bordered by Spain, Algeria and Mauritania. It has a rich culture and civilization, which remained mainly indigenous throughout times and the Moroccan cuisine has long been considered as one of the most diversified cuisines in the world. The population is almost entirely Arab-Berber. A large Jewish community also lived in Morocco before the creation of Israel, numbering approximately 265,000 in 1948. Between 7,000 and 12,000 live there now. Morocco is the world's third-largest producer of phosphorus and the price fluctuations of phosphates on the international market greatly influence Morocco's economy.

Rabat, population 650 000, is the capital and second largest city in Morocco. It is located on the Atlantic Ocean at the mouth of the river Bou Regreg. On the facing shore of the river lies Salé, Rabat's bedroom community. Together the two cities with Temara account for a population of 1.8 million. Silting problems have diminished the city's role as a port; however, Rabat and Salé still maintain relatively important textile, food processing and construction industries; some are from sweatshop labor by major multinational corporations.

In addition, tourism and the presence of all foreign embassies in Morocco serve to make Rabat the second most important city after Casablanca. It is accessible by train through the ONCF system and by plane through the nearby Rabat-Salé Airport.

The biggest place for theatre is the Theatre Mohamed V in the centre of the town. The city also has a few official galleries and an archeological museum. Many organizations are active in cultural and social issues. Orient-Occident Foundation and ONA Foundation are the biggest of these. An independent art scene is active in the city. L'appartement 22, which is the first independent space for visual arts created by Abdellah Karroum, opened in 2002. Rabat was selected as a filming location for the war film Black Hawk Down.

Program Calendar

Fall Semester: late August to late December
Spring Semester: mid-January to mid-May

Living Arrangements

You have the option of either a host family or residence hall. Students usually are placed with a roommate from the AMIDEAST program into families who have previous experience hosting American students through AMIDEAST. You will be provided with all of your meals in your host families but may find that some days it is not possible to return to the family for lunch because of class schedules so you should budget accordingly.

In the residence hall of Mohammed V University, you will live with a Moroccan roommate. Each double room has a private bathroom and toilet, small refrigerator and cooking facilities and internet access. There are separate buildings for male and female students and strict gender segregation is enforced. The residence hall is located in the university quarter of the city and students living there should expect to take public transportation to and from classes. A student cafeteria is located across the street and students may eat there, prepare their own meals in their rooms, or eat in restaurants.


Travel is not included in the cost of the program. You are responsible for getting to Rabat by the start of the program.


All students enroll in Modern Standard and Moroccan Colloquial Arabic. For your remaining courses, you will choose two or three electives from offerings in Middle East and North African studies in a variety of disciplines. Students with the equivalent of two college semesters of French may take a French course. Actual grades from AMIDEAST will be factored into your overall GPA at SU. A listing of courses and their SU equivalent can be found at the end of this page.


American citizens must present a valid passport, but they are not required to obtain a visa to travel to Morocco. Visitors may remain in Morocco for up to three months, after which time they must leave the country or apply for a residency permit. AMIDEAST will coordinate the visa extension process when necessary.

Cost & Aid

You will pay SU semester tuition and a program fee. You may apply all SU financial aid except work-study to these charges. The program fee of $2,750(fall 2012/Spring 2013) covers room and most meals, pre-departure meeting, on-site orientation, program-organized excursions, and International ID card. You should also plan to budget for local transportation, personal expenses, books and airfare. ESF students will be charged Syracuse University tuition for attendance in this program.

How to apply

Applying to this program requires completion of both the SU Abroad and AMIDEAST application. All of the application material should be submitted to the SU Abroad office by October 10 for the spring semester and March 10 for the fall semester.

Part 1: Syracuse University
  • SU Abroad application online at
  • $70 application fee payable to Syracuse University
  • Study Abroad Approval form – signed by the Dean’s office of your home college


  • Complete AMIDEAST’s application online –copy to SU Abroad
  • Study Abroad Advisor Form - SU Abroad to complete.
  • Official transcript (3.0 Cumulative GPA required)
  • Two Academic Recommendation

Meet with an Advisor

Kristine Clay– – 443-9417

Curriculum Overview

AMIDEAST Course Number and Title SU Course Number SU credits
Arabic 101-Modern Standard Arabic I ARB 180 4
Arabic 102-Modern Standard Arabic II ARB 180 4
Arabic 201-Modern Standard Arabic III ARB 280 4
Arabic 202-Modern Standard Arabic IV ARB 280 4
Arabic 215-Media Arabic I MES 280/FLL 280 3
Arabic 315-Media Arabic II MES 380/FLL 380 3
Arabic 301-Modern Standard Arabic V ARB 380 4
Arabic 302-Modern Standard Arabic VI ARB 380 4
Arabic 111-Moroccan Arabic I FLL 180 3
Arabic 211-Moroccan Arabic II FLL 280 3
Arabic 311-Moroccan Arabic III FLL 380 3
French 411-Litteratures Francophones du Maghreb (taught in French) TBA 3
Intermediate French I-II FRE 280 4
Advanced French I-II FRE 380 4
History 310 -Contemporary History of Morocco and N. Africa MES/HST 380 3
History 320 - The Islamic World and the West HST 380 3
MENA 310-Contemporary Moroccan Culture ANT/MES 380 3
MENA 311-Amazigh History and Culture HST 380 3
MENA 390-Community-Based Learning in the MENA Region TBA 3
Political Science 310-Political Systems in the Maghrib MES 380 3
Political Science 312-The Arab Spring: Revolution & Reform in the Arab World MES 380 3
Political Science 335-US Relations with the Arab/Muslim World TBA 3
Religion 340-Islamic Reform and Islamism TBA 3
Sociology 310-The Maghrib: North African Societies in Transition MES 380 3
Women's Studies 311- Gender, Islam, and Society WGS/MES 380 3