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Indonesian Overseas Program (IOP)

IOP provides participants the unique opportunity to study Indonesian language and culture in an immersion setting for a semester or academic year. Students at all proficiency levels are encouraged to apply.

Program Description

Indonesian Overseas Program (IOP)The American Councils Indonesian Overseas Program (IOP) is an intensive semester- or academic year-long overseas immersion program in Malang, Indonesia. It offers students the opportunity to gain new cultural knowledge and language competency while experiencing the vibrant everyday life and rich traditions of Indonesia. The program was established to serve participants from a variety of language levels and backgrounds, including advanced students and those learning the language for the first time.

Program Components

AcademicsAcademics / Courses

The academic program is designed to improve students' oral, listening, writing and reading proficiency in Indonesian. Course work includes classes in phonetics, grammar, and conversation as well as composition, oral comprehension and reading. Language courses also cover topics in literature, history, politics, culture and area studies. Students are enrolled in small group classes and receive approximately twenty hours per week of instruction. All classes are conducted in Indonesian by full-time faculty from Universitas Negeri Malang.

Semester I

  • Advanced Conversation: Indonesian (6 undergraduate or 5 graduate credits):Focuses on the acquisition and activation of new vocabulary. The course covers a series of frequent conversational themes and situations from daily life, including personal traits, art and culture, and current events. Students are expected to participate actively in class discussions, dialogues, and debates, as well as to prepare oral presentations and write short compositions.
    The course is also designed to develop students’ command of contemporary regional language phonetics and the intonational system, emphasizing the practical acquisition of phonetic accuracy through oral presentations and individualized work.
  • Advanced Grammar: Indonesian (6 undergraduate or 5 graduate credits): Close analysis of verbal tense, lexical groups and fundamentals of the language. Emphasis is placed on the verbal activation of all material. Students are expected to participate actively in class discussions, dialogues, and debates, as well as to prepare oral presentations and write short compositions.
  • Readings in Indonesian History and Culture (4 undergraduate or 5 graduate credits): A broad survey of Indonesian culture and society from the ancient times to the present, with special reference to such topics as religion, family, customs, history, arts, and sociopolitical organization. The course consists of readings, class discussion, and written assignments.

Semester II

  • Practicum in Spoken Language: Indonesian (6 undergraduate or 5 graduate credits): Continuation of Advanced Conversation from Semester I, focusing on expanding and enriching oral proficiency skills acquired during the first semester.
  • Comparative Stylistics: Indonesian (6 undergraduate or 5 graduate credits): Continuation of Advanced Grammar from Semester I, focusing on nuances of language morphology, syntax, and stylistics as used in the written and spoken contemporary language.
  • Topics in Contemporary Indonesian Culture (4 undergraduate or 5 graduate credits): Continuation of Readings in Indonesian History and Culture from Semester II, focusing on contemporary Indonesian culture with special reference to religion, family, customs, arts, and sociopolitical organization.

Please note that academic credit is assigned on individual basis according to participant’s level of language proficiency. Course numbers vary as follows: beginning – 000 level; intermediate level – 100 level; high intermediate – 200 level; advanced – 300 level.


To aid cultural integration and support academic learning, participants meet with conversation partners and participate on frequent cultural excursions. Conversation partners introduce participants to local young people, accompany participants on sightseeing tours, organize cultural activities (cinema, museum, etc.), and provide students with academic support. The conversation partners are expected to speak only Indonesian.

PartnersAdministration & Partners

American Councils has partnered with Universitas Negeri Malang since 2010 to provide Indonesian language training in an overseas immersion setting. Formerly the Institute of Teaching and Education Sciences of Malang, the Universitas Negeri Malang is one of the oldest teaching institutions in Indonesia, dating back to 1954. The university is one of the premiere institutions in Indonesia for the teaching of educators, professors, and teachers of Indonesian as a second language. Located in Malang, the university offers students the opportunity to explore life in a city known for its traditional food, history, sports and festivals. Malang is the second largest city in the East Java province with a population of approximately 800,000 inhabitants.

CreditU.S. Academic Credit

All American Councils programs are accredited through Bryn Mawr College, an institutional member of American Councils. Upon successful completion of the program, Bryn Mawr issues 16 undergraduate or 15 graduate hours of credit in Indonesian language (grammar and conversation).

ExcursionsExcursions & Activities

As part of the program in Malang, participants engage in a number of excursions and cultural activities. Activities outside of the classroom are designed to give participants a deeper understanding of life, culture, and history in Indonesia. While excursions and activities vary from year to year, past participants have enjoyed excursions to the following sites:

  • Indonesian Arts Center
  • Overnight excursions to Kawah Ijen volcano
  • Overnight excursion to Madura Island
  • Day trips to nearby villages such as Batu

Please note that the cultural activities and excursions may vary from year to year.

HousingHousing & Meals

Program participants live with a local host-family while in Indonesia. Living with a local family provides a valuable cultural experience and complements the academic portion of the exchange. Past participants have consistently evaluated the experience very highly. All families are screened, selected, and monitored by university staff. They provide two meals per day; participants are guaranteed private rooms, and telephone access.

SupportSupport Services

Before leaving the U.S., program participants attend a mandatory orientation program at the American Councils Washington, D.C. office. Orientation sessions address health and safety, Indonesian academic culture, host-family life, culture shock and strategies to maximize language gain. Participants also have a chance to meet and get to know fellow participants. Lodging and meals are provided.

While overseas, participants have access to in-country program staff that provide around-the clock emergency support. Additionally, participants receive comprehensive, overseas international medical insurance coverage for the duration of the program.

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