Arabic is the main language of more than 250 million people inhabiting a huge swathe of land extending from the Atlantic to the Persian Gulf. It is the fifth most widely spoken language in the world and is one of the six official languages of the United Nations. Given the central importance of the Arab world in global commerce and industry, and its importance as the immediate neighbour of Europe on the southern and eastern sides of the Mediterranean, Arabic and economics make an excellent combination. The School of Literatures, Languages & Cultures at the University of Edinburgh is recognised in the UK and internationally as a leading institution for research and study of Arabic, Islam, the Middle East, and other related subjects. Economics has been studied at the University for two hundred years; encouraging students to develop their interest in domestic and international economy. This programme is designed to give you a thorough grounding in both classical and modern Arabic, alongside knowledge of the Arabic-speaking world, past and present. A year spent studying Arabic abroad provides complete immersion in Arabic language and culture. Study of economics covers everything from individual bargaining to large-scale market interactions. It also explores issues of economic stability, growth and development. An understanding of these issues is vital for economic forecasting or influencing economic performance or policy.