About the Department

Berkeley's Department of Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures (formerly Near Eastern Studies), founded in 1894, is one of the oldest and most distinguished such departments in the country. The Department offers both general instruction and specialized training in Archaeology, Art History, Assyriology, Egyptology, Iranian Studies, Judaic and Islamic Studies, Comparative Semitics, Arabic, Hebrew, Persian, and Turkish.

NES Banner, collage by S. Kurtsikidze * EXPLORING THE LIBERAL ARTS: INTRODUCING MELC COURSES
* ASSYRIAN STUDIES AT BERKELEY
* BERKELEY COLLOQUIUM FOR THE ANCIENT MIDDLE EAST (BeCoMe)
* BERKELEY INITIATIVE FOR IRANIAN STUDIES (BIIS)
* CALIFORNIA CONSORTIUM IN ISLAMIC STUDIES (CCIS)

Sather Gate,Berkeley, photo by Shorena Kurtsikidze

The Department offers a wide variety of courses to supplement such related fields as classics, linguistics, history, political science, comparative literature, anthropology, and art history. MELC is one of the leaders in the Digital Humanities movement on campus.

Women in the MELC Department

150 years of women at berkeley
150 Years of Women at Berkeley


The Department offers a comprehensive body of information on past and present Middle Eastern civilizations.

Who We Are
Statement of Principles
Diversity Statement

COVID-19 Measures (Academc Policies)
COVID-19 Resources and Support)

MELC Commencement Ceremony

The department holds its Commencement Ceremonies in May. More information about the commencement...

News & Upcoming Events

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Contact Information

  • melc@berkeley.edu

  • (510) 642-3757

  • 250 Social Sciences Bld
    Berkeley, CA 94720-1940
    United States

  • (510) 643-8430

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