Due to the unstable circumstances in the Middle East in the last decade, a large number of immigrants from Arab origins immigrated to non-Arab countries. This immigration created a new generation of Arab heritage learners who want to learn the Arabic language as a heritage language for different reasons. This study investigates the motivation and attitude of Arab heritage children between 10 and 16 years of age and their parents’ perspectives toward learning Arabic as a heritage language in host countries. 143 participants (92 parents, 51 children) living in 17 different non-Arab countries have participated in this study. The method used in this study is a mixed method by using an electronic questionnaire in six different languages for parents and children. The findings of this study indicate that the children have integrative and extrinsic motivation to learn Arabic as a heritage language, which meet their parents’ perspectives and reasons behind enrolling their children in Arabic classes. Moreover, they have a positive attitude toward the Arabic language and its culture and speakers. However, children were less motivated and had less positive attitudes than their parents. At the end of this study, the researcher provides a number of strategies and techniques as pedagogical implications that could be of benefit to all heritage students, especially those living in non-Arab host countries.


School of Humanities and Social Sciences


Applied Linguistics Department

Degree Name

MA in Teaching Arabic as a Foreign Language

Graduation Date

Spring 5-18-2021

Submission Date


First Advisor

Dr. Dalal Abo El Seoud

Committee Member 1

Dr. Zeinab Taha

Committee Member 2

Dr. Raghda Al-Essawi


110 p.

Document Type

Master's Thesis

Institutional Review Board (IRB) Approval

Approval has been obtained for this item