Spoken today primarily in Iran, Afghanistan and Tajikistan, Persian was historically more widely understood in an area ranging from the Middle East to India and exerted a strong influence on languages such as Hindi, Urdu, and Punjabi. Persianate culture, religion and literature have had an extraordinary impact, not just in Central, Southern and Western Asia, but within the world at large.

A comprehensive list of courses offered by the Department of Asian Studies can be found in the UBC Calendar.

UBC Lectures in Iranian Studies Facebook page

Interested in Iranian Studies events? Follow “UBC Lectures in Iranian Studies” on Facebook to stay up-to-date with upcoming lectures.

Courses for Non-Persian Speakers

Persian 100 (Basic Persian I)
Basic vocabulary and the fundamentals of modern Persian grammar, structure, and pronunciation, as well as reading, writing, listening, and speaking.

Persian 101 (Basic Persian II)
Continuation of PERS 100.

Persian 200 (Intermediate Persian I)
Reading of simple texts with emphasis on reading and writing, conversation skills, grammar, and syntax.

Persian 201 (Intermediate Persian II)
Continuation of PERS 200.

‘New’ or Modern Persian is among the world’s 20 most widely spoken languages

Courses for Persian Native Speakers

Persian 104 (Basic Persian)
Reading and writing of standard Persian; lexical and syntactic differences between written and spoken Persian. Restricted to Persian *heritage students or students who were born in Iran and studied up to (but not beyond) grade 2 in Iran before coming to Canada.

Persian 300 (Intermediate Persian)
Graded readings, writing, exposure to textual history, newspaper readings, and translation. Cultural materials presented as appropriate. Restricted to students who have passed Persian 104 or to students who were born in Iran and studied up to (but not beyond) grade 6 in Iran before coming to Canada.

Persian 400 Short Story (Advanced Persian)
Modern short stories from mid-19 century to present. Restricted to students who have passed PERS 104 and/or PERS 300 or students who were born in Iran and studied up to grade 12 in Iran before coming to Canada. Students who have studied at the post-secondary level in Iran are not eligible.

Asian Studies courses related to Iran

Winter 2019

ASIA392 Classical Persian Literature in English Translation Sections

Works of classical Persian literature dating from the tenth to the seventeenth century (in English translation).

Winter 2019

ASIA393 History of Iran from the Sasanians to the Safavids Sections

Iranian history from the fall of the Sasanian empire and the Arab conquest of Iran to the rise of Iranian dynasties in the east, the reign of Turkic and Turko-Mongolian rulers, and the formation of a Shiite Iran under the Safavids.

Winter 2019

ASIA394 Post-Revolutionary Iranian Cinema Sections

Gender politics, family relationships, and women's social, economic, and political roles in post-revolutionary Iran as shown through Iranian cinema.

Winter 2019

ASIA395 Modern Persian Literature Sections

Modern Persian literature, including fiction, drama, and/or poetry, of Iran, Afghanistan, and/or Tajikistan dating from the mid-19th to the 21st century (in English translation).

*Heritage students are defined as students with a certain level of oral and/or aural proficiency in Persian because they were raised in a home outside Iran where Persian was spoken. Heritage students have little or no knowledge of or training in reading and writing Persian.