Bahasa Indonesia is the official language of Indonesia, an archipelago of 17,508 islands that is the world's largest Muslim-majority nation, with a total population of nearly 242 million. Over 300 different native languages are spoken in Indonesia. While Bahasa Indonesia is spoken as a mother tongue by only 7% of the total population, it is the national language and is used by 200 million people as their second language. In order to facilitate communication among the Indonesian people, Bahasa Indonesia is commonly used for business and administrative purposes as well as by education institutions and mass media throughout the country.

Bahasa Indonesia is written with the Latin alphabet, and the lexicon is rich with borrowed vocabulary from many languages such as Sanskrit, Arabic, Portuguese, Dutch, and Chinese.

Mastery of the language opens opportunities for the student to enjoy literary works by the world-class prose author Pramoedya Ananta Toer as well as by post-Suharto writers such as Ayu Utami. Students will easily find the relevance of Bahasa Indonesia to the study of Indonesia through courses offered across the campus in many departments including history, anthropology, and comparative literature.

The Department of Asian Languages and Literature offers classes open to both undergraduate and graduate students in Bahasa Indonesia. The courses are designed to expose students to the four language skills (listening, speaking, reading, and writing), as well as to immerse students in Indonesian culture. Please see the UW Course Catalog for course descriptions and Courses for class offerings per quarter.

Watch the Indonesian Course Trailer.

Faculty in This Area

Senior Lecturer, Southeast Asian Program Coordinator


There are no upcoming events on our calendar related to this field.

All content tagged with this term:


Senior Lecturer, Southeast Asian Program Coordinator



Title Date Time Location
Religion, Gender, and Diversity in Southeast Asia
A Henry Luce Foundation Collaboration between the Indonesian Consortium for Religious Studies and University of Washington Southeast Asia Center
Mar 6 8:30am to 3:30pm Odegaard Library Room 220
Studying Islam in the Age of Terror and Islamophobia
Dr. Muhamad Ali, University of California, Riverside
Mar 3 2:30pm to 4:00pm Thomson Hall Room 317


Title Date Time Location
Approaches to Religious Violence, Radicalism, and Deradicalization: Perspectives from the US and Indonesia 
UW SE Asia Center, Asian L&L, Indonesian Consulate General
Oct 18 9:30am to 2:00pm Odegaard 220
Sundanese Music and Dance of Indonesia Jun 2 7:30pm Meany Hall, UW
KERATON 2016: Indonesian Festival featuring Jason Chen May 28 3:00pm to 9:00pm HUB Lawn
Writing Indonesia with Leila S. Chudori
Leila S. Chudori
Apr 26 3:30pm to 5:30pm Communications Building (CMU) 202
Islam, Indonesia, Israel: Indonesian Perceptions of the Middle East and Middle Eastern Perceptions of Indonesia Apr 25 5:30pm to 8:00pm Yukon Pacific Room - University of Washington Club
Rethinking, Questioning and Reformulating the Notion of Assessment in Foreign Language Teaching Apr 3 10:45am to 12:45pm Washington State Convention Center, 6th Floor, Room 620
Symposium on Indonesian Language Teaching Apr 1 1:00pm to 4:45pm Thomson Hall, Room 317


Title Date Time Location
The United States and Southeast Asia Panel Discussion with four US Ambassadors Oct 2 2:00pm Walker Ames Room, Kane Hall 225, University of Washington - Seattle campus


Title Date Time Location
Ethnomusicology Visiting Artist Event
Didik Nini Thowok
Nov 10 7:30pm Brechemin Auditorium
Batikful Indonesia: Batik Exhibition For Charity Oct 23 to Oct 24 Husky Union Building
Malam Budaya: A Cultural Night of Indonesian Dance
Seattle Indonesian Dance
Jul 26 6:00pm Langston Hughes Performing Arts Institute
KERATON 2014: The Authentic Indonesian Market
Indonesian Student Association at UW
May 24 3:00pm to 9:00pm HUB Lawn
Indonesian Movie - Soekarno Apr 20 6:00pm Kane Hall 210
2014 Annual Student Conference in SouthEast Asian Languages: Indonesian Apr 19 Savery Hall 167
2nd Annual Students Conference in Southeast Asian Languages 2014: Indonesian Apr 19 Savery 167
Indonesian Movie Night! - "Arisan! 2"
Indonesian Student Association
Feb 6 6:15pm Thomson 101


Title Date Time Location
Bach-Gamel Orchestra Dec 8 7:00pm Cornish College, Poncho Hall
Indonesian Night Market Nov 16 3:00pm Northgate Community Center
Indonesian Movie Night - "Because We Were Beautiful: Indonesian Comfort Women Tell Their Stories" Nov 14 6:00pm Thomson 101
Indonesian Movie Night: THE RAID: REDEMPTION Oct 17 6:00pm Thompson 101
Negotiating Religiosity with a 'Secular' State: Confucianism and Religious Politics in Indonesia
Evi Sutrisno
May 13 10:00am Denny 401
Student Conference in Bahasa Indonesian Apr 20 Savery 131
Indonesian Movie Night - "Tales of the Waria" Apr 12 6:00pm Thomson 101