Frequently Asked Questions

Why is the two-year course sequence called “Hindi-Urdu”?

Hindi and “Urdu” share a common grammar, so from a linguistic point of view they are one language. Our program teaches the Hindi (Devanagari) script at the beginning of the elementary class, and the Urdu script in the spring semester of the elementary class, so everybody ends up having two “languages” for almost the price of one. In terms of vocabulary, we try to emphasize common core vocabulary rather than extremely Sanskritized or Persianized words.

What if I am fluent in spoken Hindi or Urdu, but cannot read or write?

You probably belong in the Hindi or Urdu for Heritage Speakers’ class.

What if I am somewhat competent, and somewhat literate, in Hindi or Urdu?

Then you probably belong in either “Readings in Hindi Literature” or “Readings in Urdu Literature.” Both are taught every semester, and are repeatable since the content changes every semester. To be eligible for these courses, you must either successfully complete the intermediate class, or obtain the consent of the instructor.

  Address:  401 Knox Hall, MC9628
606 West 122nd St,
New York, NY 10027
  Tel: (212) 854-2556