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Middle Eastern & Islamic Studies Certificate at University of Colorado Boulder

The Certificate in Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies provides students the opportunity to formally explore the cultural, political, and religious diversity of the Middle East and the Islamic worlds.


The region commonly referred to as the Middle East includes over 20 Arabic speaking countries, as well as Iran, Turkey, and spans Southwest Asia and North Africa. A culturally, religiously, and linguistically diverse region, the Middle East today is one of the most geo-politically critical regions in the world. It is the birthplace of the three major monotheistic faiths, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, the home of medieval Islamic civilizations, and home to rich literary, architectural, and religious traditions. Islam, a monotheistic faith that began in the Arabian Peninsula in the 7th century, is today practiced by over one billion people and is diversely expressed through a vast geographic, linguistic, and cultural terrain, from West Africa to East Asia. The Certificate in Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies provides students the opportunity to formally explore the cultural, political, and religious diversity of the Middle East and the Islamic worlds.

Students who have completed the requirements for the MEIS certificate and are graduating in December or May must complete the Program of Study form and the Certificate Completion form and submit them to Erin Ashbaugh, 240A Eaton Humanities, Department of Asian Languages and Civilizations:

MEIS Certificate Statement of Intent Form (PDF)

MEIS Certificate Completion Form (PDF)

MEIS Certificate Program of Study Form (PDF)

The certificate requires a total of 19 credit hours to include both language and content courses.

One year of either Arabic or Farsi language. Only language courses beginning at the Intermediate level (2000 level) will count toward fulfilling certificate credit hour requirements. Advanced Arabic language courses can also fulfill content course requirements. In addition to Arabic or Farsi, students are encouraged to study another Middle Eastern language, such as Hebrew or Turkish (although Turkish is not currently offered at CU, there may be a possibility for interested students to study Turkish through Direct Independent Language Study).

The certificate also requires that students complete 9 additional credit hours (three upper division courses), at least one of which must be a course designated ARAB. These 9 credit hours may be selected from the list of approved content courses below and are to be completed with a grade of C- or better.

As a certificate program with a focus on Islamic studies, at least one of the three content courses must have a specific focus on Islam and the Islamic world.

A student who participates in an approved study abroad program may earn up to 6 hours of lower division credit (2 courses) and 10 credit hours for language study at an intermediate or advanced level. Approval of study abroad credits will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis by the certificate’s advisor.

Students should also consult with the Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies Certificate advisor annually and must fulfill the requirements for a B.A. or B.S. degree in an established major in a school or college of the University of Colorado.

List of Approved Courses:

  • ANTH 4050/JWST 4050 Topics: Cultures of Israel & Palestine
  • ANTH 4180 Global Islams
  • ARAB 1011 Intro to Arab and Islamic Civilizations
  • ARAB 3330 The Arabic Novel
  • ARAB 3340 Representing Islam
  • FRSI 1011 Intro to Persian Civilization
  • GEOG  3742 Place, Power, and Contemporary Culture
  • GEOG 4742 Geographies of Contemporary Muslim Societies: Islam, Biopolitics, & the Postcolonial
  • HEBR/JWST 2350 Introduction to Jewish Culture
  • HEBR/JWST 4203 Israeli Literature: Exile, Nation, Home
  • HIST 1308 Intro to Middle Eastern History
  • HIST 3328-003 Seminar in Middle Eastern History
  • HIST 4318-003 The Medieval Middle East. A.D. 500-1600
  • HIST 4328 The Modern Middle East, 1600 to the Present
  • HIST 4329 Islam in the Modern World: Revivalism, Modernism, and Fundamentalism, 1800-2001
  • HIST 4348 Jews under Islam
  • HIST 4368 History and Society of Modern Arabia, 1800-2001
  • HIST 4528 Islam in South and Southeast Asia
  • IAFS 3000-003 Special Topics in IAFS: Statebuilding in the 21st century
  • IAFS 3000-004 Special Topics: Political Economy of the Middle East
  • IAFS: 3300-004 Economy, Politics, and Society in the Middle East
  • IAFS 4500 The Post-Cold War World: Afghanistan and Iraq
  • IAFS 4500 Understanding 9/11: Causes, Events, Legacies
  • IAFS 4500 The Geopolitics and Economics of Oil
  • JWST 1108 Introduction to Jewish History
  • JWST 4302 Justice, Democracy, and Human Rights in Israel and the West Bank
  • RLST 2600 Judaism, Christianity, and Islam
  • RLST 3600 Islam
  • RLST 4650 Islam and the Modern World
  • RLST 4820 Islam and Modernity
  • RLST 4820/5820 Religious Minorities in the Pre-Modern Mediterranean
  • RLST 5820 Gender, Sex, Modernity and Islam
  • RLST 5840 Islam and the Politics of Affect
  • WMST 3220 Women in Islam

Certificate Advisor
Haytham Bahoora
Assistant Professor of Arabic Literature
Department of Asian Languages and Civilizations
HUMN 215

Contact the Center

Address: University of Colorado Boulder, 1600 Pleasant St., Boulder CO 80309, Boulder, USA

Phone: 303-492-7294

Website: colorado.edu

About Ali Teymoori

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