AAU Department of Amharic Language Litrature and Folklore
AAU Department of Amharic Language Litrature and Folklore – Check Below:
The present Department of Amharic Language, Literature and Folklore (formerly, the Department of Ethiopian Languages and Literature) was established in 1962 under the then Faculty of Arts. When the Institute of Language Studies was established in 1978, the Department with its former name became one of the four departments of the Institute. In its earlier history, students joining the Department used to major in Amharic and minor in subjects such as English, History, Geography, Psychology, Library Science and Professional Education.
The Department of Amharic, at its inception and early stage of development, was small and limited in scope, catering for a very small number of students within the Department (as majors) and a larger number of students as minors. The Department’s program then (and for several years to follow) was two-pronged: on the one hand, it was the project of popularizing Amharic as a subject at the college level; on the other hand it was the training of specialists in language learning-teaching, with courses in Linguistics forming the bulk of the syllabus. The primary aim in both cases was to produce qualified (Amharic) language teachers for high schools and, to a limited extent, teachers and language researchers at the college level. Those students majoring in the program were taught Ge’ez, Amharic (including introductory courses in poetry in both), Arabic and courses in general linguistics.
Later on, towards the end of the 1960s, steps were taken to address the need to include literature courses. Even then, the Department was conceived of, in an Ethiopian context, as the legitimate center for producing qualified personnel in such fields as teaching Amharic, journalism, and translation, which meant less emphasis was laid on such ‘classical’ courses as Ge’ez and Arabic (without negating the importance particularly of Ge’ez).
Although the main objectives of the teaching stream still focused on Amharic teachers for high school and in a limited manner for colleges, the graduates of the Department could not satisfy the needs of secondary schools all over the country. The need for producing qualified Amharic language teachers for colleges also heightened. The growing need for qualified personnel in the area and the recognition that Amharic was serving as a working language of the government, led to the conception of a graduate program in Teaching Amharic (TeAm). In 1990 (1983E.C.), the Department began offering graduate courses in the teaching of Amharic language. Students who obtained their first degree from the Department and other related departments and who had adequate experience in teaching the language at senior secondary schools and colleges joined the program. The first group graduated in 1993 (1985 E.C.).Recently, the Department has launched a PhD program in Applied Linguistics in Teaching Ethiopian Languages, which is intended to train and meet the needs of highly qualified teachers of and researchers in Amharic and other Ethiopian languages in the country.
Currently, the Department has one undergraduate program, namely BA degree in Amharic Language, Literature and Folklore; two graduate programs: MA degree in Teaching Amharic (TeAm), MA degree in Ethiopian Literature and Folklore; and three PhD programs: PhD in Ethiopian Folklore, PhD in Applied Linguistics/Teaching Amharic and PhD in Ethiopian Literature.
In addition, the efficacy of the Amharic for Foreigners Unit of the Department, where courses are given for foreigners and Ethiopians from foreign countries, has been growing. Although the Unit was established in 1979 to train foreigners who came to work in the then revolutionary Ethiopia from Communist China, ithas been accepting students from almost anywhere in the world. As the numbers of foreigners, who come to visit, live and work in Ethiopia is on the increase, the number of students taking Amharic courses in the Department is also expected to grow very fast. In order to satisfy this demand, recently the Unit has started to strengthen and develop its curriculum and teaching aids.
Mission and Vision
The mission of the Department of Amharic Language, Literature and Folklore is to produce competent graduates in language teaching, literature and folklore.
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Current Head: AlemuKassaye (PhD)
Telephone: + 251-011-123-9702
University email ID: Alemu.Kassaye@aau.edu.et
Office Location: AAU, Main Campus
Building Number: OCR 210
Floor Number: 1st Floor
Room Number: OCR 210
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