Learning Bahasa Indonesia in Sumatra
Replies: 11 - Last Post: Aug 2, 2013 4:25 PM Last Post By: heru1966
Jan 7, 2012 5:45 PM
I am planning an extended trip to Indonesia and plan to start in Sumatra. I've heard this is a good place to learn Bahasa Indonesia, and I would like to spend my first couple weeks in the country studying and taking language classes. Is this only possible in big cities or could I find an informal place to learn in a less populated area that has tourist attractions? (For example, Danau Toba?) Does anybody have a recommendation for somewhere in Sumatra that would be a good introduction to the culture and language? I will be on a budget and prefer to stay away from cities, unless they are the best option - if necessary, I can put some extra effort in and teach myself from books and chatting with locals, but I think it would be nice to have a teacher/tutor to help, preferably in a quiet place. Ideas?
Jan 7, 2012 10:31 PM
1There are few Indonesian cities that are truly Indonesian. Jakarta is one....
Medan is the other. Not such a great place to live while studying, but its cheap and you will
enjoy that it isn't dominated by one ethnic group, which unfortunately occurs in most places here....
The university is perhaps best suited for learning Bahasa Indonesia. If they don't have a program they can certainly recommend a qualified tutor.
Jan 7, 2012 11:51 PM
2Did a Google search and found this - it is old and I could not find anything more recent.
In Bukittinggi you can buy a book called 'Let's Study Bahasa Indonesia with a New Method' by Drs Gusrisal HP 08161354430 at the Tourist Bureau in the Pasar Atas. He also offers tuition. (It looks as though proofreading is not his forte .)
Online you can go to learningindonesian.com and download some free lessons (and more if you want to pay).
A few years ago someone in TT said he knew people in Medan.
Jan 8, 2012 3:10 PM
3I suggest you contact the "Australia Centre" in Medan. It is the only place in Sumatra that is licenced to conduct IELTS programs and testing. Three years ago one of the Directors there was a woman named Henny Chanda. She could still be there. There would be many students there who are fluent in English and maybe one would be happy to earn a bit of extra coin by tutoring. Avoid any book that shows evidence of 'poor proof reading' because more often than not proof reading is not the problem - it's actual knowledge of the language that is the problem. For example I once saw this conversation in a text book. CONVERSATION AT THE MARKET: BUYER: "Good morning fruiter. I'd like some banana." FRUITER: How much banana you want?" The quickest way to learn any language is having the courage to make mistakes. Get out there and use the language with the locals. You will be well received. I
Jan 8, 2012 3:39 PM
4If you've heard Sumatra is a good place to learn Bahasa Indonesia you've heard wrong. I'm not aware of any organised schools or classes in Sumatra and any opportunities would be with a private tutor. The Australia Centre in Medan does not provide Bahasa Indonesia courses/classes.
The best schools are in Yogyakarta - try Realia or Wisma Bahasa. There's also IALF (Indonesia-Australia Language Foundation) which has branches in Jakarta and Bali.
Jan 8, 2012 5:11 PM
5merantau - I was offering Drs Gusrisal as someone who was offering to teach Indonesian not English. That is what OP was asking for. So his English skills are not so important.
There were places in the book where there was a lack of proof reading eg the same Indonesian phrase on two successive lines with two completely different English translations (one right) or when a word was missing from the Indonesian column but appearded in the English one. There were other places where the English was weak too but I can speak that, it is Indonesian I wanted to learn - I was not necessarily recommending the book (which is better than nothing) but advise OP of someone offering to teach Indonesian in Sumatera which is why I added the telephone number. (I have never contacted the author so I don't know if he is still teaching.)
Edited by: LungPaul
Jan 9, 2012 1:20 AM
6That's a very old website - earthquakes, tsunamis and terrorism have caused a pretty dramatic fall in foreigners' interest in learning Bahasa Indonesia since then. Here's the current website.
Jan 9, 2012 3:53 AM
7bonek - Yes - I have looked at the copyright notices now and see the differences in the years. I am surprised that such a prestgious organisation as UTS would leave such obsolete information online.
Pity - I was even thinking of using it one day on a future trip to Sumatera. I think the decline in tourism has been going on for a lot longer than that - perhaps as long ago as the flood in Bukit Lawang and the cessation of 60 day free visas.
BTW - it might be a good idea if OP phoned them when he arrives (or even email before) to see if they have any contacts to teach Indonesian - the old teachers might still be interested.
Jan 9, 2012 4:53 PM
Jan 11, 2012 7:46 AM
Aug 2, 2013 4:22 PM
10Memang kalau mau memperdalam bahasa Indonesiamu sebaiknya pergi ke tempat di mana bahasa Indonesia dipergunakan sebagai basa sehari-hari. Karena tidak semua tempat di Indonesia mempergunakan bahasa Indonesia sebagai bahasa sehari-hari. Mereka sebagian besar memmpergunakan bahasa daerah setempat. Dan bahkan ada sebagian masyarakat yang bahkan tidak paham bahasa Indonesia sama sekali, walaupun itu tidak banyak. Tapi walaupun demikian hampir seluruh rakyat Indonesia memahami bahasa Indonesia.
Aug 2, 2013 4:25 PM
(3 star Hotel)
From US$49.48 per night
(5 star Hotel)
From US$315.99 per night
(4 star Hotel)
From US$178.25 per night