CLS Indonesian Bahasa Indonesia

The Indonesian Language

Bahasa Indonesia is the official language of the most populous Muslim country and one of the world's most interesting cultural and economic landscapes. Spoken by over 250 million people living in the archipelago nation of Indonesia, fewer than 300 Americans enrolled in collegiate Indonesian courses in 2009, creating an amazing opportunity for those students who take it.

Indonesia is a remarkable country made up of 6,000 inhabited islands (and 11,000 more uninhabited ones!), and many of these islands feature their own unique cultures and languages. Closely related to the widely spoken Malay language, Indonesian has the potential to be a gateway to many countries in Southeast Asia. Today, Indonesia features a rapidly growing economy and is gaining momentum on the international stage. By studying Bahasa Indonesian, you can add an in-demand language to your repertoire and prepare to contribute globally in your field, whether it's medicine, environmental policy, or music and the arts.

Program Sites


Featured Alumni Profiles

Betty Nen
Indonesian 2017
Malang, Indonesia
Helen Jiang
Indonesian 2016
Malang, Indonesia
Alex Miller
Indonesian 2015
Malang, Indonesia
Garik Sadovy
Indonesian 2012
Malang, Indonesia

Indonesian Stories

CLS 2017 Application Launches!

We are pleased to announce the opening of the competition for the U.S. Department of State 2017 Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) Program in fourteen critical foreign languages. The CLS Program is a program of the U.S. Department of State... Read more