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Web-Arabic as Lingua Franca (WALF): Variation and Standard in Teaching Arabic as Foreign Language (TAFL)

Cristina Solimando


One of the most interesting issues in second language teaching is how students should be exposed to language variation using methods based on the analysis and comparison of authentic texts. In this respect, research regarding the teaching of Arabic is relatively lacking. Moreover, in recent years Arabic has been changing rapidly, strongly influenced by the social networks. The most evident result of this is the emergence of Web-Arabic, which can be regarded as a lingua franca in online communication. Although characterized by a prevalent use of Standard Arabic, it is also marked by recourse to colloquialisms and dialectal features. The present study illustrates how a group of Italian teachers of Arabic participating in teacher education courses were introduced to the teaching of language variation through the analysis of Web-Arabic as Lingua Franca (WALF). The most significant preliminary findings are that WALF can provide an innovative tool in the teaching of variation in Arabic and provide stimulating considerations for new strategies.


TAFL (Teaching Arabic as Foreign Language); Web-Arabic; teaching practice; teachers’ education courses; lingua franca.

Full Text:



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DOI: https://doi.org/10.7358/ling-2018-002-soli


Linguæ & - Rivista di lingue e culture moderne
Registered by Tribunale di Milano (06/04/2012 n. 185)
Online ISSN 1724-8698 - Print ISSN 2281-8952

Dipartimento di Scienze della Comunicazione, Studi Umanistici e Internazionali: Storia, Culture, Lingue, Letterature, Arti, Media
Università degli Studi di Urbino Carlo Bo

Editor-in-Chief: Roberta Mullini
Editorial Board: Maurizio Ascari - Stefano Beretta - Antonio Bertacca- Tania Collani - Chiara Elefante - Marina Guglielmi - Maryline Heck - Richard Hillman - Reinhard Johler - Stephen Knight - Cesare Mascitelli - Sonia Massai - Aurélie Moioli - Maria de Fátima Silva - Bart Van Den Bossche 

Editorial Staff: Margaret Amatulli - Alessandra Calanchi - Riccardo Donati - Ivo Klaver  - Massimiliano Morini - Antonella Negri - Luca Renzi

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