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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
Advanced Pashto
CEUS-T 354/754
Rahmon Inomkhojayev

Course Objectives
The aim of this semester is to provide students with an advanced knowledge of the Pashto language as it is spoken and written today in Afghanistan. The primary goal of this semester is to improve the communicative skills of students, extend grammatical, lexical knowledge and use a wide variety of stimulating and challenging activities. This course plans use materials related to the Pashtunwali, its codes & customs, trade & buying of goods, various medical terms, news channels in Afghanistan and much more. Listening activities involve work with audio files of narratives and interviews from authentic sources, including, broadcast of the Voice of America, BBC and Afghan TV, etc.
By the end of this course, students should be able to participate in the informal and some formal exchanges on a variety of topics related to work, home events of public and personal interest, converse on a variety of familiar topics, understood by native speakers, demonstrate ability to narrate and describe in all time frames (present, future and past), read and narrate texts of medium complexity.

This semester, the focus will be the language of educated native speakers and the contemporary literary standard 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, movies and photographs, illustrating contemporary life of the Pashtuns.

Required texts and materials:

  1. Materials developed in CeLCAR, Indiana University Bloomington.

Suggested texts and materials

  1. A Pashto newspaper reader. Dunwoody Press, 1984
  2. Rahimi, M.H., Rohi, M.S. Pashto-English Dictionary (Peshawar, Pakistan: Aryana Book Agency, 2005-2006).
  3. English-Pashto Dictionary. Aryana book sellers. Peshawar. 2005-2006



Additional materials will be adapted from the following recourses:

  1. Pashtoon, Naseer Hoonar, Pashtoon, Zeeya A., A Handbook of Pashto Verbal Conjugation (Hyattsville, MD: Dunwoody Press, 2006).
  2. Qazi Rahimullah khan, Introduction to Pushtu: An official Language of Afghanistan (New York, NY: Hippocrene Books, 2002).
  3. Speaking Afghan Pashto (The Eastern Afghan Dialect), edited by Randall Olson. Peshawar-Colorado Springs, 1996.
  4. Rashteen, Sadiqullah. Pashtunwali Guide book. (Peshawar, Pakistan: Master Prints, 2000).
  5. Penzl H. A grammar of Pashto: a descriptive study of the dialect of Kandahar, Afghanistan. Washington, 1955.
  6. Pashto audiotapes are available at: (CeLCAR’s website)
    and (the Language and Computer Labs in Ballantine Hall).

Assignments and grading policy
At the end of the semester you will receive a final course grade. It is derived from the following components:

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

Homework is given every day; and it is due the following morning in class. You may turn in late homework to receive feedback from your instructor. However, you will not receive credit for late homework. Bonuses or extra credit are not given for extracurricular events.

Graded assignments follow IU’s universal grading scale, i.e.:
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

Classes begin.

M Jan 10

Martin Luther King Jr. Day (classes do not meet)

M Jan 17

First eight-week classes end (final exams during week of February 28)

Sa Mar 5

Second eight-week classes begin.

M Mar 7

Spring recess begins after last class.

Sa Mar 12

Spring recess ends; classes resume at 8 a.m.

M Mar 21

Free Week (see Final Examination Policies)

M Apr 25 - Su May 1

Last day of classes (including second eight-week classes)

Sa April 30

Final examination period (including second eight-week classes)

M May 2 - F May 6

Final exams: CEUS language courses comply with the IU Final Examination Policy and schedule. See Effective Fall 2005 IU policy makes students responsible for checking the dates and times of final exams before registering for classes. Students are requested to note this date and plan to be on campus at that time. The date of the final exam for CEUS language classes is also printed on the class syllabus. Requests for changes are considered only in compliance with IU policy which states in the event of more than three exams in one day, the instructor/department of the fourth and subsequent exam is obligated to adjust the student's exam time, provided the student notifies them by the mid-point of the semester.
A student who has a passing grade and fails to attend the final exam for reasons that could not be anticipated and that were beyond the student’s control, should discuss the absence with the CEUS department chair. The chair may require a student to file a written explanation of the absence for review and fact checking by the Dean of Students Committee on Absence. The final decision in the dispensation of these matters remains with the CEUS chair; there is no guarantee a grade of Incomplete will be granted (More information about this is provided in the “Departmental Policies” section below).

Departmental Policies

Attendance: Attendance in this class is restricted to registered students and to infrequent visitors approved by the CEUS chair in advance. Students enrolled in CEUS language courses obtain a grade at the end of each semester. The Department does not offer pass/fail options.
Students are also expected to have completed all homework assigned for each class in a timely manner and be ready for active participation

Absences: Language learning requires greater 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.

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 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 anticipate, should discuss these absences with the CEUS chair as early as possible. 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)

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.

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,):
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.
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.