The English Language Fellow based in Manama, Bahrain, Saada Muntasser, recently drew upon her expertise in the Arabic language and Arab culture to offer a crucial training for English-language teachers and other Fellows. She delivered a presentation on how easy it is to misconstrue the needs and challenges of Arab English-language learners by viewing them as a monolithic group. Muntasser’s presentation, entitled “Arab Learners of English: Which Arab?” discusses the various Non-Standard Arabic (NSA) dialects and how they differ from Modern Standard Arabic (MSA), while focusing on language-teaching and -learning implications. Muntasser’s presentation also discusses how often research studies inaccurately reference first-language transfer for Arab learners of English and their frequent failure to clarify which Arabic dialect is being discussed. The presentation concludes with a mention of the PARSNIP (Politics, Alcohol, Religion, Sex, Narcotics, Ideology, and Pork) cultural teaching method and the use of appropriate authentic materials in classes. As Mutasser’s colleague, Jennifer Borch—herself an English Language Fellow in Morocco—said, “The PARSNIP method has helped me better understand my Arab students and has encouraged the students themselves to participate and discuss their views on each element.”

Related Stories

Fellow Katrina Schmidt Shares Stories of Training English Teachers in Mexico

Based in Tijuana, Mexico, one of the most visited border cities across the globe, English Language Fellow Katrina Schmidt trains English teachers. More than 50 million people cross the border between California and Mexico every year through Tijuana. Follow Schmidt’s fellowship journey as she increases English teaching capacity and mutual understanding in a growing international…

Dani Francuz Rose’s Life as an English Language Fellow in China

English Language Fellow Dani Francuz Rose teaches junior-level university courses to English majors at Anhui University in Hefei, China. Discover Dani’s story of building intercultural connections and professional learning communities and learn how she is making a sustainable impact on increasing English language proficiency across the Anhui Province.

Follow Us on Twitter


Nominate an outstanding colleague from your fellowship by June 17 at for a chance to come t…

1 day ago