Pedagogical Issues in Teaching Indonesian to Tertiary Students

Streets of Indonesia

Event details

Seminar

Date & time

Saturday 28 November 2020
1.00pm–4.00pm

Venue

Online - Zoom

Speaker

Multiple Speakers

Contacts

CHL Communications and Outreach Team

Additional links

This event will feature six presentations by tertiary teachers of Indonesian, each speaking about a learning-teaching issue of personal interest to them.

Session 1 – What’s colloquial Indonesian and how should we teach it?

Saturday 28th November, 1:00pm–1:45pm (AEDT)

Abstract

The question of whether or not the informal register of Indonesian known as ‘informal Indonesian’ or ‘colloquial Indonesian’ should be taught, and if so, how, has occupied teachers of Indonesian for years. In an article published in 2001, James Sneddon argued that using language appropriate for the situation is important for “good manners” and effective communication. He mentioned that “most non-native teachers have little or no knowledge” of this language “variety”, and teaching material is almost non-existent. Nineteen years on, material on colloquial Indonesian is more widely available, yet we as teachers are still wondering how to teach it effectively. In this talk, I discuss colloquial Indonesian as a style of speaking and writing and suggest that examining different types of text could provide a useful strategy for introducing its salient features.

About the Speaker

Associate Professor Dwi Noverini Djenar

Novi Djenar is Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Indonesian Studies at the University of Sydney. She has published articles and books on Indonesian grammar and the discursive construction of style and identity in fiction and interaction. Her recent book, Style and Intersubjectivity in Youth Interaction (with Michael Ewing and Howard Manns, 2018) highlights the multidirectionality of style. Novi is currently preparing an edited volume (with Jack Sidnell) on language and self-and-other relations in Southeast Asian speech communities, to be published by National University of Singapore (NUS) Press.

Session 2 – What to do with beginners? [1]: Reflections on Ayo Berbahasa Indonesia/ Asyik Berbahasa Indonesia: A teacher's perspective

Saturday 28th November 2:00pm–2:45pm (AEDT)

Abstract

After many years using our own materials, Indonesian Studies at UWA started using Ayo and Asyik, as well as some of the online resources produced by Ellen Rafferty and her team at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. I will talk about how we use these resources at various levels in our program, looking critically at what the books offer and what they lack. I am approaching this forum less to defend our choice of texts and more to learn from others about the range of sources out there and how they might be used to structure the learning of our students in a way that enables them to speak to both anak nongkrong and diplomats.

About the Speaker

Dr David Bourchier

David Bourchier has taught Asian Studies at the University of Western Australia since 1998. He is the chair of Asian Studies and coordinator of the Indonesian program. For many years this involved teaching the upper levels of Indonesian, although for the past few years he has been enjoying teaching beginners.

Session 3 – Are loanwords running amuck in Bahasa Indonesia or are they your cup of tea?

Saturday 28th November, 3:15pm–4:00pm (AEDT)

Abstract

If “English has pursued other languages down alleyways to beat them unconscious and riffle their pockets for new vocabulary” (Nicoll, 1990), then Indonesian might be thought to display predatory preman (organised criminal) behaviour too. However, often Indonesian is seen as contaminated by the languages it borrows from (perhaps due to some post-colonial hangovers). This talk will set out some of the major historical factors and trends behind loaning in Indonesian before discussing some of the challenges and joys of teaching an ‘open’ language like Indonesian. Drawing on experiences of students’ perceptions and prejudice, mixed awareness of language variation and change, and inconsistent historical knowledge of the region, I will suggest some practical approaches to teaching loanwords in Indonesian generalisable to teaching other languages. I will also share some of my own less successful moments teaching loans as fodder for thought and discussion.

About the Speaker

Ms Zara Maxwell-Smith

Zara Maxwell-Smith is an Indonesian teacher and PhD candidate at the ANU. Her research focuses on the use of language technologies to understand the work of language teachers in their classrooms and to assist teachers in evaluating different teaching resources. Zara uses automated speech recognition tools to build specialised language models for use on bilingual teaching data and works with colleagues to develop specialised pipelines for processing Indonesian language teaching resources. She is also the co-author and teacher of ‘Indonesian Politics and Culture’ in the ANU Extension program.

Session 4 – Native speaker? Non Native speaker? What qualities should a good Indonesian teacher have?

Sunday 29 November, 1:00pm–1:45pm (AEDT)

Abstract

Every L2 learner dreams of learning to speak like a Native Speaker (NS). But are NSs the best teachers of their languages? Not necessarily. It is easy, for example, to hear Indonesians modelling language which they themselves would never use, or to find Indonesian language materials produced by NSs which contain repeated factual errors and misleading information. (True, non-native speakers also make such materials!). But wouldn’t, say, my accent be better if I were taught by a NS? Again, not necessarily. In this talk I consider questions such as, just which NSs should teach Indonesian?, do non-NS teachers have a role? And, more broadly what are (some) qualities of good Indonesian teachers at tertiary level? I will also argue that at tertiary level language students should not only learn languages but also learn about languages. And they should learn to critically evaluate language data given by NSs in the same cautious way they (should) treat information from internet searches, dictionaries, literature, films, songs, etc.

About the Speaker

Dr Adrian Clynes

Adrian has taught languages and linguistics in secondary and tertiary institutions in Australia, Indonesia, France and Brunei, and currently teaches Indonesian at the Defence Force School of Languages in Canberra. As a language teacher he has been privileged to work with some excellent native speaker teachers and some excellent non-native speaker teachers.

Session 5 – What to do with beginners? (2): Indonesian Way: A teacher's perspective

Sunday 29 November, 2:00pm–2:45pm (AEDT)

Abstract

The Indonesian Way is an introductory set of resources used in universities in Australia, Europe and the US. This talk will draw on our experiences using the resources in various capacities, setting out the major characteristics of the book and online resources. Using examples and anecdotes from classroom interactions, assessment results and student feedback we will discuss strengths and weaknesses of the pedagogical approaches embedded in the resources as well as their suitability for tertiary program settings. We will make special note about the suitability of the resources for adult learners of Indonesian, as well as the adaptability of the resources for a remote-learning setting in COVID-19 era.

About the Speakers

Mrs Nenen Ilahi

Nenen’s first experience teaching Indonesian as a foreign language was in 1994 as a participant in DFAT’s flagship program, AIYEP (the Australia Indonesia Youth Exchange Program), and the Victorian Education Department program as a teaching assistant in Yarram, South Gippsland in 1996. She taught Indonesian as a sessional staff at the Australian National University from 2010 to 2020. Since 2014 she has been working for CIT Language Solutions to teach Indonesian for various government agencies, such as DFAT and Defence. In 2019 she won a Wattle Award from ANU’s College of Asia and the Pacific and was a candidate for ANU Vice Chancellor’s Awards for Excellence in Education 2020.

Ms Zara Maxwell-Smith

Zara Maxwell-Smith is an Indonesian teacher and PhD candidate at the ANU. Her research focuses on the use of language technologies to understand the work of language teachers in their classrooms and to assist teachers in evaluating different teaching resources. Zara uses automated speech recognition tools to build specialised language models for use on bilingual teaching data and works with colleagues to develop specialised pipelines for processing Indonesian language teaching resources. She is also the co-author and teacher of ‘Indonesian Politics and Culture’ in the ANU Extension program.

Session 6 – How can we teach Indonesian grammar at tertiary level?

Sunday 29 November 3:15pm –4:00pm (AEDT)

Abstract

This talk presents a way of teaching Indonesian grammar I have developed over many years: one that is far from state of the art practice but that my students clearly enjoy. The talk raises issues such as: should we hold dedicated grammar lessons as a discrete part of the weekly program? If so, how much of the class time should we devote to explanation versus practice? What kind of grammar practice activities work well in class? How much technical terminology do we need to use with students? Should we try to teach more or less the entire grammar system over the three-year undergraduate program? Aside from dedicated ‘grammar lessons’, what other weekly activities work well for teaching grammar?

About the Speaker

Dr Tim Hassall

Tim Hassall is the Senior Lecturer and Convenor of the Indonesian language program at the School of Culture, History & Language, The Australian National University. He has taught Indonesian at university for over 20 years, and he taught TESOL to adults for some years before that. His own research on L2 acquisition is not on grammar, but as a language teacher he has always enjoyed teaching grammar more than anything else.

Updated:  7 July 2017/Responsible Officer:  Director, Culture, History & Language/Page Contact:  CHL webmaster