How to be Successful in Learning Indonesian?

tips for success in learning indonesian

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It’s a common belief that “hard work equals success,” but why do people seems to forget about that principle when learning a new language? This concept is also very suitable when applied to the goal of learning Indonesian.

Just like learning anything else, there’s no instant process. Motivation and determination go hand in hand. However though, there are ways that are more effortless than the others. And at Think Bahasa we are committed to sharing our proven methods and strategies to do just that. We believe wholeheartedly that in order one to be successful in learning Indonesian, he or she MUST find fun and enjoyment while learning the language itself.

How does someone gain the determination to work hard? By realizing that speaking and writing Indonesian does not happen automatically, and understanding that being illiterate in Indonesian leaves the immigrant on the outside of society. Indonesian language learners MUST strongly want to learn Indonesian and find a course, instructor, or a personal method of learning and, then, begin studying. They must completely immerse themselves in the Indonesian language. Immersing does not mean living in Indonesia. You do not have to live in Indonesia to experience an immersion in Indonesian language, though without a doubt, living in Indonesia will give you an opportunity to do so.

Instant Indonesian Immersion at Your Home

It is important that studying be done by taking notes and underlining the material whether it is that read in class, assigned for homework, or experienced through individual study. It is amazing how much more effective either class or self study work becomes when notes are taken. We always highly encourage all our students to copy all new Indonesian words they learn for later review. Along with keeping a “vocabulary notebook,” there is also the necessity of having a good dictionary in order to learn the meanings of the new words.

For that very reason, we like to recommend this dictionary to our students and readers:

We particularly love its convenient travel size. It’s a pocket dictionary afterall, and top top that we love that there is a bidirectional English-Indonesian and Indonesian-English section.

Fun and Effective Ways to Learn Indonesian Vocabulary

Another method we’d like to suggest our students and readers to widen their range of vocabulary is to learn from Indonesian English bilingual storybooks. There are many good ones you can find on Amazon and Google Books these days.

Indonesian Books for Beginners

Once the student is taking notes, keeping a “vocabulary notebook,” and using a basic dictionary, it is time to sit down to study. We can’t emphasize enough the importance of reviewing whatever it is you’ve learned before. Reading over the day’s notes allows one to recall the material, and keeps the intensity of the lesson in the mind. Practice to write different sentences using that particular word you’ve just learned.

Another key element to succeed in learning Indonesian is patience. “Great works are performed not by strength but by perseverance.” When learning a new skill, you may hit a boredom or even a learning plateau, to keep the process fun and motivating, head over to read our other article on how to stay motivated learning Indonesian.

10 Ways To Stay Motivated Learning Indonesian


Last but not least, do not be afraid to make mistakes. Many Indonesian language learners fear speaking ‘broken Indonesian’ in the presence of Indonesian native speakers. They’d rather act as though they cannot speak a word of Indonesian than expose their still-in-the-works pronunciation. This fear is understandable, but if you can shift your perspective, overcoming this fear will be easy. Think of it as an opportunity for you to perfect your Indonesian. Indonesians would know that you’re not a native speaker, they certainly won’t expect you to be perfect with your grammar, vocabulary and even pronunciation. If anything, you’ll discover that you will find them very thrilled to have learned that you are learning their language. So yes, make use of every chance you get to practice with native speakers and receiving feedbacks to speed up your learning. There’s nothing better than putting what you’ve learned into practice.


To sum up, here are 8 tips for success in Learning Indonesian:

  1. Have the right mindset and attitude: to be successful in mastering Indonesian you’ve gotta put in effort and time.
  2. Get yourself to think in Indonesian.
  3. Take notes when doing a lesson and review your notes.
  4. Have a vocabulary notebook and practice using the new vocabulary you’ve learned.
  5. Read as much as you can.
  6. Have patience to yourself. Consistency is key.
  7. Make your practice session fun to keep your motivation high.
  8. Continue to practice and don’t be afraid to make mistakes.

Do you have any other tips to share with your fellow Indonesian language learners? Share with us in the comments below! 🙂

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