Date of Award


Degree Name



College of Liberal Arts

Type of Degree


Document Type


First Advisor

Dolores Johnson

Second Advisor

Katherine Rodier

Third Advisor

Kellie Bean

Fourth Advisor

Leonard J. Deutsch


The aim of this sociolinguistic study is to examine the grammatical gender difficulties that non-Arabic speakers face when they learn Arabic as a second language (ASL) This work concentrates on English and French speakers and compares the errors each make while learning Arabic. The choice of these two languages resulted from two factors: (1) since the author is fluent in English and French, she conducted her research on speakers of both languages; (2) since both Arabic and French are considerably more marked morphologically than English, the researcher is interested in examining the type of errors made by the speakers of the two languages. This similarity leads her to predict two findings: (a) the errors that are made by French ASL learners are different from those made by the English learners, and (b) It is easier for French speakers to comprehend the Arabic grammatical rules and make fewer errors than the English speakers whose language does not support a rich grammatical gender system.

After briefly defining Arabic gender and tracing its origin to the Semitic languages, the author presents the Arabic grammatical gender rules to clarify how all words are classified as masculine or feminine. Then she categorizes and analyzes the errors that were made during the interviews she conducted. In the final part of the study, she provides some steps, and strategies that ASL teachers and learners can follow to gender.


Arabic language – Grammar – Study and teaching.

Arabic language – Gender.


Arabic language – Sex differences – Study and teaching.

Arabic language – Social aspects.

Arabic language – Study and teaching – Foreign speakers.