Semitics refers to the study the languages, literature, culture, and history of the language families are most commonly found in Southwest Asia and North Africa. Semitic languages such as Arabic, Ethiopic, and Hebrew still continue to be utilized as a primary languages for over 500 million people today across the world. Other languages such as neo-Aramaic are dying out, while others such as Ugaritic or Akkadian are long extinct. The languages store important ideas and values that have been carried for thousands of years. UCLA offers a wide variety of courses in Semitic languages including Akkadian, Aramaic, Arabic, Hebrew, Ugaritic, and Syriac. In addition, related languages such as Sumerian, Hittite, Luwian, and Egyptian are also offered. Students are expected to reach a high proficiency level in one of the main Semitic languages with a secondary competence in at least two other related languages.