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Indonesia through its discourse


Admission requirements

  • Indonesian language proficiency at the level of a Leiden University BA in Indonesian Studies (according to the Language Levels of the Common European Framework of Reference, approx.: listening C1, reading C1, spoken interaction B2, spoken production B2, writing B2).

  • Knowledge of and insight into Indonesian cultures, societies, and histories at the level of the entry requirements for the MA in Southeast Asian (Indonesian) Studies.


The course Indonesia through its discourse is a seminar with weekly discussion on various aspects of Indonesia. The primary materials for this course are taken from Indonesian newspapers, magazines, the internet and other sources. Eight weekly meetings will take the form of Indonesian-language group discussions on topical issues in such fields as history, politics, economy, music, dance, culinary culture, fashion, or religions. One topic is discussed each week, for which the students should submit a summary written in Indonesian of the relevant materials to the teacher before the class meeting. The five remaining weekly meetings will be devoted to individual research projects carried out by the students. Every participant will write a 3000-word essay in Indonesian on a topic of Indonesian culture (politics, society, arts, religion, history) and give a presentation about this project to the class.

Course objectives

  • To train the students in articulating complex thoughts in spoken and written Indonesian (aiming to reach level C1 for listening and reading according to the Language Levels of the Common European Framework of Reference).

  • To improve the students’ ability to comprehend written en spoken Indonesian discourse (aiming to reach level C2 for spoken interaction, spoken production, and writing according to the Language Levels of the Common European Framework of Reference).

  • To broaden and deepen the students’ cultural (political, social, religious, historical) knowledge of and scholarly insight into Indonesia.


Weeks 1–8 : Indonesian-language discussions on a range of Indonesian topics
Weeks 9–13: Indonesian-language discussions and presentations in preparation for the students’ essays.

Mode of instruction


Assessment method

  1. Weekly summaries (eight in all) written in Indonesian of the readings and other materials (25% of final mark). In order to be taken into account, the summaries must be submitted online at least 48 hours before the beginning of the class meeting in question,
    1. Active participation in the class discussions (30% of final mark)
    2. An oral class presentation in Indonesian about the issue explored in the essay (15% of final mark)
    3. A 3000-word essay written in Indonesian, on a topic to be agreed between the student and the teacher (30% of final mark). The final version of the essay must be submitted online on or before the determined submission date (in the examination period).


Blackboard will be used:

  • for the table of contents of the seminar

  • for making available study materials

  • for submission of the weekly summaries by students

  • for submission of the essays

  • for announcements and other communications

Reading list

A reading, listening and viewing list (contents to be announced) containing materials in the following categories:

  • primary materials (written and audio-visual) in Indonesian

  • scholarly articles and chapters (background readings) in Indonesian and/or English


Exchange and Study Abroad students, please see the Study in Leiden website for information on how to apply.

Contact information

Drs. Suryadi


As usual with seminar courses, students are required to attend at least 75% of class sessions in order to be allowed to pass the class successfully.

Students must complete all four examination elements in a satisfactory manner in order to be eligible to receive a final grade for this course.