Pashto & Dari Courses

Pashto & Dari Courses

Pashto Class

Classes in the two official languages of Afghanistan, Pashto and Dari, are offered at California State University, East Bay in the San Francisco Bay Area. Its Hayward campus is central to the largest concentration of Afghans in the United States. The courses are of special interest to Afghan Americans and people in business, social and human services, and government who are interested in working with Afghans locally or abroad. With beginning classes held during the academic year, the summer intensive program is aimed for the intermediate language learner.

Intermediate Pashto or Dari Summer Study

Program Overview

The 2011 Summer Intensive Program in Afghan Language and Culture at Cal State East Bay offers the choice of studying either the Pashto or Dari/Farsi language at the intermediate level, with an emphasis on Afghan culture and including an Afghan Diaspora course. The intensive 10-week course of study, held June 20 through August 27, is designed as an evening and Saturday program to fit the schedule of motivated students. Through this semi-immersion language program, you will earn 16 quarter units of college credit while experiencing a range of interactive activities both inside and outside of the classroom. Continue developing your listening, reading, speaking, and writing skills in realistic environments and increase your cultural awareness to enjoy rapid progress.

Summer Scholarships Available

Students admitted into the summer program may receive full or partial scholarships based on date of application, and on merit, financial need, or both. Scholarships may cover the following costs:

  • Tuition and fees
  • Saturday excursions depending on availability of community events
  • Other activities associated with the Pashto and Dari Language Program

Scholarships are made possible through a federal grant awarded to the California State University Strategic Language Initiative.


While the program itself is non-residential, students interested in living on campus during the summer quarter can stay in student housing for an additional cost. The apartments overlook the beautiful San Francisco Bay Area, are fully furnished, and within walking distance to all campus facilities.



  • Farid Younos, Ph.D., Dari Language Courses
  • Haji Razmi, M.A., Pashto Language Courses
  • Valerie Smith, Ph.D., Afghan Diaspora Course

Class & Credit Details

Students will earn a total of 16 quarter units of college credit in a combination of coursework, laboratory hours, guest speakers, films, field trips, and other language and culture related activities. Small classes, one-on-one tutoring, and innovative uses of technology enhance individualized learning. Classes and interactive learning take place Monday through Thursday evenings and a half-day on Saturdays.

The summer immersion program incorporates four courses on the Pashto Track or four courses on the Dari Track.

Pashto Track:

  • Intermediate Pashto I (MLL 2551) for 4 units
  • Intermediate Pashto II (MLL 2552) for 4 units
  • Intermediate Pashto III (MLL 2553) for 4 units
  • The Afghan Diaspora (ES 3500) for 4 units

Dari/Farsi Track:

  • Intermediate Dari I (MLL 2561) for 4 units
  • Intermediate Dari II (MLL 2562) for 4 units
  • Intermediate Dari III (MLL 2563) for 4 units
  • The Afghan Diaspora (ES 3500) for 4 units


Prior completion of one year (two semesters or three quarters) of first-year Pashto or first-year Dari or equivalent is recommended. Students who have similar knowledge learned elsewhere of communicating in the language may also apply. Individuals who have completed one year of Persian or Farsi study are eligible for the Dari track. At the Cal State East Bay campus, a student who successfully completes MLL 1553 Elementary Pashto III or MLL 1563 Elementary Dari III fulfills the prerequisites for the program. Both Afghan and non-heritage students are invited to apply, as well as people from the community. To be eligible for the program a student must be 16 years of age or older on June 20, 2011.

Apply Today

Early application is recommended. Review of applications will begin after April 15 and continue for as long as space is available.

The application procedure is an easy three-step process:

Step 1. Complete your application packet. A completed application includes:

  • A completed application form including a "statement of purpose" in English and a brief essay in Pashto or Dari
  • A letter of recommendation from a professional reference

Summer Application Form (You need to have ADOBE READER to read this pdf file.)

Step 2. Submit your application in one of two ways:

Learning Center

By Mail

Mail your completed application packet to:

Valerie Smith, Ph.D.
Pashto & Dari Language Program, MB 1511
College of Letters, Arts and Social Sciences
California State University, East Bay
25800 Carlos Bee Boulevard
Hayward, CA 94542

By E-Mail

Scan and e-mail your application packet to

Step 3. If you are selected as a finalist, you will be asked to take a screening test in Pashto or Dari and will be interviewed in English.

For More Information

For more information about the Pashto and Dari Language Program, contact:
Valerie Smith, Ph.D.
(510) 885-2543

The following promotional materials may be electronically distributed to others:

About Cal State East Bay

California State University East Bay is known for award winning programs, expert instruction, small classes, a highly personalized learning environment, and a choice of more than 100 career-focused fields of study for its 13,000 students. The Hayward Hills campus overlooks the San Francisco Bay and its proximity to major Bay Area cities provides unique cultural ‎opportunities including museums, art galleries, aquariums, planetariums, plays, ‎musicals, sports events, and concerts.

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