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Inner Asian & Uralic National Resource Center (IAUNRC) Sinor Research Institute for Inner Asian Studies (SRIFIAS) Center for Languages of the Central Asian Region (CeLCAR) Summer Language Workshop (SWSEEL)
Central Eurasian Studies >> Courses >> Course List
Introductory Pashto
CEUS-T 154/554
Rahmon Inomkhojayev

Course Objectives
The primary goal of this semester is to provide students with a high introductory knowledge of the Pashto language as it is spoken and written today in Afghanistan. Cultural issues related to language will also be discussed. The focus will be the language of educated native speakers and the contemporary literary language as reflected in the media. By stressing extensive practice in listening, speaking, reading, and writing, this course will familiarize students with the structural system of Pashto and will provide a systematic presentation of its usage through theme based materials. Throughout the course, students will be introduced to such visual materials as authentic video clips and photographs illustrating contemporary life of the Pashtuns.

By the end of the course the student should be able to read prose texts of factual content and deal with everyday situations, perform pragmatic competence dealing with topics included in the curriculum of the semester. The student should be able to talk about his daily activities, hobbies, immediate members of family, health issues, seasons, whether conditions, giving and getting directions, describe the date, time etc.
Required texts and materials:

  1. Pashto. An Elementary Textbook, developed by R. Inomkhojayev, CeLCAR, Indiana University. (Available at CeLCAR, Eigenmann Hall, 718)
  2. Teaching material developed by R. Inomkhojayev, CeLCAR, Indiana University. (Will be distributed in the class)

Suggested texts and materials:

  1. Gayan Chand. English-Pashto, Pashto-English Dictionary. 2nd edition. Simon Wallenberg Press, USA, 2007.
  2. Rahimi, M.H., Rohi, M.S., Pashto-English Dictionary (Peshawar, Pakistan: Aryana Book Agency, 2005-2006). (Amazon site)
  3. English-Pashto Dictionary. Al-Azhar Book Co. Peshawar. 2005. (Amazon site)
  4. Khan, Qazi Rahimullah, Introduction to Pushtu: An official Language of Afghanistan (New York, NY: Hippocrene Books, 2002). (Available through Amazon site)
  5. H.Tegey, B. Robson. Beginning Pashto. Textbook. Center for Applied Linguistics. Washington, D.C. 1993. (E-version at IU Wells Library)
  6. H.Tegey, B. Robson. A Reference Grammar of Pashto. Center for Applied Linguistics. Washington, D.C. 1996. (E-version at IU Wells Library)
  7. H.Tegey, B. Robson. Pashto-English Glossary for the CAL Pashto Materials. Center for Applied Linguistics. Washington, D.C. 1993. (E-version at IU Wells Library)

Technology and online resources used in the course

  1. Multimedia CD-ROM, developed by CeLCAR, Indiana University. (Available at CeLCAR, Eigenmann Hall, 718).
  2. Pashto audiotapes are available at: (CeLCAR’s website)
  3. TV broadcast at (“Voice of America, Pashto Ashna TV”).
  4. Radio broadcast at (VOA Deewa Radio) (BBC Pashto news), (add Pashto and chose songs, drama, music, etc.)

Assignments and grading policy
Students enrolled in CEUS language courses obtain a grade at the end of each semester. The Department does not offer pass/fail options.
The final course grade is derived from the following components:

Participation: 30%
Homework (oral and written assignments, presentations, journal): 30%
Quizzes and chapter tests: 15%
Midterm exam (including oral interview): 10%
Final exam: (including oral interview): 15%

Students are also expected to have completed all homework assigned for each class in a timely manner and be ready for active participation.
Homework is given in every class; and it is due the following class. You may turn in late homework to receive feedback from your instructor. However, you will not receive credit for late homework.
In order to receive maximum score on the ‘participation’ component, you need to (1) actively participate in pair/group-work; (2) actively contribute to free conversation without the teacher’s calling on you; and (3) your answers have to be almost always correct and relevant to the topic.  Attendance without active participation does not result in credit.
Bonuses or extra credit are not given for extracurricular events.
Graduate students in CEUS language courses are held to a higher standard.

 IU’s universal grading scale:
A+ 99-100%               B+ 89-90%                  C+ 79-80%                  D+ 69-70%
A   95-98%                  B   85-88%                  C   75-78%                  D   65-68%
A-  91-94%                 B-  81-84%                  C-  71-74%                  D-  61–64%

Important Dates
Jan. 11: First day of classes.
Jan. 18: Martin Luther King Day (Classes do not meet.)
Mar 5: Midterm exam
Mar 13: Spring recess begins after last class.
Mar 22: Spring recess ends; classes resume.
Apr 26 - May 2: Free Week
May 1: Last day of classes.
May 3 - May 7: Final examination period.


Departmental Policies

Language Program Supervision and Student Liaison
CEUS departmental policy restricts the kinds of decisions that language instructors are authorized to make. Any exceptions to all aspects of CEUS language courses have to go through official departmental channels, which start with the CEUS Language Coordinator. Any exception must be documented in writing even though it is made through the proper channels.
Contact information: Beatrix Burghardt, Language Program Coordinator
Office location: Memorial Hall W001A
Tel: 855-4867

Beatrix Burghardt supervises CEUS Language Programs. She also acts as a student advocate for these languages. Students may turn to her with any questions regarding classroom instruction. Any unresolved matters will be directed to CEUS Chair, Prof. Christopher Atwood.

Auditing: The Department of Central Eurasian Studies does not allow auditing of language courses.

Incompletes are not given in CEUS language courses. Any inquiries must be addressed to CEUS Chair directly.

Attendance: Attendance in this class is restricted to registered students and to infrequent visitors approved by the CEUS chair in advance. Sit-ins are not allowed.

Absences: Language learning requires greater and more active participation in the classroom than most other subjects in the university curriculum. Students are expected to attend ALL classes. Students are allowed to miss three instructional hours during one semester without grade penalty.
Absences beyond three instructional hours will result in a grade penalty of 2% per class. Additional absences can be considered by the department only with proper documentation of attested medical needs for which a doctor's note will be required, and with the possibility of a tutoring requirement to preclude class disruption for other students.
You may not make up tests or exams if you do not inform your instructor ahead of time of your anticipated absence.

Religious holiday’s policy
Under IU policy, students are required to request accommodation for religious observance before, not after, it occurs. The deadline for such requests suggested by the policy is the end of the second week of a regular semester. Students are not required to supply evidence of their attendance at the religious services or events in order to qualify for any accommodation granted to them.
The Accommodation Request form that students can complete to request accommodations is on the website, at

Class Etiquette:  While in the language class, students are expected to pay attention and not distract other students with disruptive activities. This includes newspaper reading, conversation unrelated to class, eating, text-messaging, and the like. Those who come 5 min. late or who are disruptive in class will be docked one percentage (out of the 100 %) per incident. Persistently disruptive students will be dealt with through the university disciplinary system.
You are expected to be up-to-date with the material covered in the previous classes, and willing to respond to questions and participate in discussions.

Plagiarism constitutes using others’ ideas, words or images without properly giving credit to those sources. If you turn in any work with your name affixed to it, your instructor assumes that work is your own. If you work with a tutor on homework assignments, you need to indicate it.

Final exam policy: Students who fail to attend the final exam of a CEUS language class and who have a passing grade up to that point can be considered for an Incomplete only if the CEUS chair has reason to believe the absence was beyond the student's control. If not, the grade of "F" must be awarded.
Students who anticipate absences from the final exam, or who are absent from the final exam for reasons they could not foresee, should discuss these absences with the CEUS chair in advance. Students who are absent from final examinations may be asked to file a written explanation of the absence with the department. The Dean of Students Committee on Absence might be asked to review the written explanation and offer an opinion, but the final decision in the dispensation of these matters remains with the department. (See Indiana University Bulletin)

If you are a native speaker of a language or you are a citizen of a country where the language is commonly spoken, or you graduated from a high school in that country, Indiana University and departmental policy may (or may not) prohibit you from enrollment in this language class. Please direct all related questions to the Department of Central Eurasian Studies, Goodbody Hall 157, 855-2233, or

Disabilities Services for Students (see Indiana University Bulletin, 2006, Bloomington):
The Office of Disability Services for Students provides services and referrals for students with disabilities. Academic accommodations and other services are provided on an individual basis as determined by documented need. Accommodations and services, available for qualified students, include letters to faculty, test accommodations, etc. It is the responsibility of the individual students to identify themselves as an individual with a disability when seeking accommodation or adjustment. For more information, contact: Disability Services for Students, Franklin Hall 096 or call (812)-855-7578 or visit If you have a Learning Disability, contact Learning Disability Support Services at 855-3508.   
If you have a learning disability of any kind, it is your responsibility to inform your instructor at the beginning of the course.
Adaptive Technology Center (ATC)
The ATC makes hardware or software designed to provide improved information access for individuals with disabilities. It specializes in assistive technologies that help with reading, writing, studying, and information access.  For example, ATC provide services for students, faculty, and staff with the following disabilities: vision (blindness and low vision), mobility impairment (limited wrist/arm movement), etc. and hearing loss.
Contact: Adaptive Technology Center, Herman B. Wells (Main) Library, Room 101. 
Monday-Friday from 9am-5pm; or on the web:

NOTE: The ATC is open to all. In order to use ATC services you do _not_ need to have a DSS diagnosis.