The country of Indonesia is the world’s largest archipelago with over 18,000 islands encompassing its borders. It is also the world’s 4th most populated country with more than 235 million inhabitants. The sheer size of Indonesia’s population has given it a varied and multicultural identity with over 300 different languages being spoken by its inhabitants. In 1945, the Indonesian government decided to designate ‘Bahasa Indonesia’ as Indonesia’s official language. The vast majority of Indonesians learned and adopted the language using it to communicate with other native Indonesians from different islands and far away cities. This article will examine the Indonesian language while taking a look at the different ways to learn Indonesian.
‘Bahasa Indonesia’, directly translated, means “the language of Indonesia”. The language is a very similar to Bahasa Malay, the national language of Malaysia, with both languages sharing approximately 80% of their vocabulary. The Indonesian language is simple to learn and speak due to a very straightforward and easy to grasp system of grammar. Also, unlike many Asian languages, the Indonesian language doesn’t rely on tones, which makes it much easier to learn Indonesian words.
Benefits of learning Indonesian
Learning Indonesian is useful for a number of reasons. Firstly, Indonesia is a developing economy that is currently on the rise and expected to boom in the coming years. As more manufacturing and industry moves to Indonesia, the ability to speak the Indonesian language will be an important plus point to include on any CV.
Indonesia is also becoming a tourist hotspot with many travellers, especially backpackers, choosing to spend their holidays in Indonesia rather than the traditional tourist hotspots found in other parts of South East Asia. Learning Indonesian can be useful for travellers since it gives them the ability to converse with natives and makes it easier to travel around remote areas with few English speakers.
Methods to learn Indonesian
There are many different ways to learn to speak a new language, each with its own set of pros and cons.
There are many language books that teach how to learn Indonesian. These books are cheap, but they provide little feedback to gauge progress and most are quite old and employ dated teaching methods.
There are also a number of smartphone apps that aim to teach Indonesian. These apps often use multimedia functionality combined with snack sized languages that are easy to consume. These apps are normally quite limited in scope, however, with little taught beyond the basics of the language.
Language lessons, either as a group or with a private tutor, are an attractive option to learn a language quickly. However, these lessons are often incredibly costly and time consuming.
Online courses offer the ability to learn languages using multimedia features to teach the language in structured lessons. The main downside of most online courses is that they can only be accessed while at a desktop computer.
Learning Indonesian with Babbel
Babbel is a new way to learn languages that uses all the strengths of technology to make it easier to learn languages than ever before. Interactive exercises teach vocabulary and grammar while an integrated speech recognition tool takes microphone input and uses it to make sure pronunciation is correct. Babbel’s lessons are also well structured and flexible, allowing language learners to progress at their own pace. Smart phone apps that integrate with the Babbel website also ensure that learning can continue while on the move. Babbel’s low price also ensures that everyone can use it.