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Certificate of Middle East and Islamic Studies 

This certificate is awarded by the University of Pennsylvania’s Middle East Center (MEC) to Penn Law students looking to engage in contemporary research on the modern Middle East or to study the area’s ancient and medieval languages and civilizations. 

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To qualify for the Certificate, a Penn Law student must successfully complete four courses in the general area of Middle East and Islamic Studies. Three of these courses are taken in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences (GAS) and must be primarily related to the study of Middle Eastern or Islamic societies. The fourth course is taken at Penn Law and will ordinarily include a component involving Islam or the Middle East, but may be in the area of International Law.

Certificate Requirements

To fulfill the requirements of the Certificate, the four courses must meet the following requirements:

  • Two of the courses may be language courses at the 500 level or above, but no more than two.
  • One of the four courses must deal with some aspect of law in Middle Eastern or Islamic societies.
  • One, but only one, of the four courses may be taken at Penn Law. (However, if the law class is focused on Middle Eastern and/or Islamic law, it may satisfy the second and third requirement.) 

Students must maintain a B (3.0) grade average or above in the courses taken in GAS.

Courses in GAS must be chosen in consultation with and approved by Dr. Firoozeh Kashani-Sabet, Director of the Middle East Center.

Courses at Penn Law must be approved by Amy Gadsden, Associate Dean for International Programs.


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