Hindi and Urdu

Palace Grounds, Lahore, Pakistan

Questions about the Hindi and Urdu program?

Contact the Director of Language Instruction for Hindi and Urdu Meraj Ahmed.

The mission of the Hindi and Urdu Program in the University's Department of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies is to provide excellent and innovative language instruction and resources to our students and the community.

Our students—undergraduate, students, and professionals—come from diverse backgrounds, heritage and non-heritage. As the only college in Minnesota that offers Hindi and Urdu language instruction, we are committed to meeting the high expectations of our students, the University, and the local community. Our program has arranged several events that can connect the University to the local community, allowing the public benefit from the program by learning about the cultural and social aspects of the respective Hindi and Urdu country.

India, often called an economic powerhouse or a rising economy, has received a lot of attention recently. India is also the world’s largest democracy, and its visibility in the international arena is ever growing. According to the World Bank’s 2015 data, India is the world’s 9th largest economy with a GDP of US $2,066 trillion (Pakistan is the world’s 44th largest economy with a GDP of US $243 billion), but Goldman Sachs’s 2007 report predicts that India’s GDP will surpass that of America by 2050.

The Hindi and Urdu languages share the same grammar and basic vocabulary despite being written in different scripts. With Hindi being the official language of India and Urdu the official language of Pakistan, the combined number of Hindi and Urdu speakers equals 588 million and is spoken by the second largest population in the world. Hindi and Urdu will grow to be one of the two most dominant languages—along with Chinese—by 2050. Learning Hindi or Urdu and their cultures would certainly be a good investment.

What Our Program Offers

  • Beginning Hindi and Beginning Urdu
  • Accelerated Hindi and Accelerated Urdu
  • Intermediate Hindi and Intermediate Urdu
  • Advanced Hindi and Advanced Urdu

Our program emphasizes cultural proficiency and adopts the communicative approach, focusing on performance-based language teaching.

Our language instruction curriculum is designed to provide a continuous three years of language learning so that you can acquire linguistic and cultural competence at the advanced level by the time you graduate. You will be generally prepared to use the language for work or a post-graduate education.

Accelerated Hindi and Urdu 

Our accelerated courses are designed for students who already have good speaking skills (mainly heritage students) or those who studied Hindi or Urdu in the past and can review basic knowledge of the language at a faster pace. You will learn materials that are normally covered in a full academic year. The Hindi or Urdu script will be introduced right from the beginning. By the end of semester, you will be equipped with linguistic and cultural competencies that will enable you to communicate successfully with people of the target country at a novice-high level, and have a good foundation on which to further build proficiency in the language. Course focuses on all four skills (plus cultural skills) and employs the communicative approach as a main teaching methodology.  

Hindi and Urdu Teaching Tutorial 

The teaching tutorial is designed for students who have a teaching career in mind or are interested in working as a tutor. You will learn the basics of pedagogical language teaching methodologies and various other instructional strategies so that you can apply them to your own teaching practices. After training, you can work as a tutor for students who are enrolled in our Hindi and Urdu classes.