I've had her for beginning indonesian last quarter, and have her again this quarter, and will have her again next quarter. i strongly recommend her as a professor! The class is mixed between people who are already fluent (a few kids), people who know a little (one half) and people who really don't know anything at all (the other half) but she teaches every concept thoroughly, so it doesn't matter if you've ever learned any indonesian before. She is superb. This class has absolutely nothing to do with my major, but it's by far my favorite class. It's small, so you get to know each other decently, and there isn't a lot of homework or tests. She's extremely fair and generous, there is absolutely no reason why anybody who tries wouldn't get a good grade. The class is fun, and I really couldn't imagine a better teacher. I highly, highly, highly recommend her.
Spring 2020 - (For Indo 1, 2, and 3) - Professor Wijaya, or Bu as you will learn to call her, is a really great professor and has made my experience learning Indonesian really awesome! Difficulty obviously increases with each successive part of the series, but overall, I would say that they're guaranteed A's (although Indo 3 definitely requires you to step it up a lot in effort, so maybe more like a guaranteed A-?). The Indonesian language series is pretty low key overall, as no more than 15 or so people are typically in a cohort, so you become very familiar with everyone after 3 quarters of taking it. Most of the students tend to be of Indonesian heritage, and the way the material is structured, you end up sharing a good amount of details about your life with your classmates, and Bu likes to know about her students, so it's pretty much inevitable that you'll know some facts about everyone. Oh, and there's a ton of partner exercises where you'll get to know classmates too. Additionally, the class is a mix of people who either know 0 Indonesian, have an ok grasp of colloquial Indonesian, or know maybe like 20 words total. I personally came into the class knowing just a couple of words, and although there were a couple advantages to this during certain exercises, all of the material I was assessed on was learned in the classroom. So do not worry if you don't know everything! This is because we learn Bahasa Indonesia, or the national language of Indonesia, as opposed to regional dialects/languages. I will say though, because of the varying levels of Indonesian, it was kind of hard to work with the more knowledgeable folks that knew colloquial Indonesian. STRUCTURE AND GRADING - Indo 1 and 2 have a different grading scale, with 10% participation (aka show up to class), 10% HW, 10% final oral exam, 5% final presentation, and 65% tests (3 tests during the quarter and 1 during finals week worth 20%). The test during finals week is NOT cumulative, and it's just a little bit longer than a normal test. For Indo 3, the grading scale is pretty much the same, except that the tests are now worth 50%, homework is worth 20%, and the oral exam is 10%. Although the registrar lists these classes with a discussion, it's literally just lecture part 2, so yes, you do have to go. There's no TA either; Bu teaches the discussion period. You should keep in mind however that Friday's are when tests happen, and although they're ezpz in Indo 1, by Indo 2 and 3, they can take onwards of 1.5 hours (in fact, most of them are designed to take 1.5 hours), so you might have to take the exams at 8 am or craft your schedule such that your Fridays don't have other classes. What I'm trying to get at here is that even though the discussion period is only 1 hour, you might have to go past that time period or ask to start the exam earlier if you need more time. Bu will bring it up though when the time comes. I don't know the test grading system too well, but it's quite interesting because if you get something wrong, she usually subtracts like a fraction of a point, so like -0.3 or something like that. You get to see the tests during class/office hours, but you don't get to keep them. Also, Indo 1-3 will always have lecture at 11 am MW and discussion at 9:00 am F, which can be a problem later down the road if you're a STEM major, as these are prime slots for STEM classes. According to the syllabus, a 94%-96% is considered an A, whereas a 93% is an A-, which is kinda an oof tbh. As for the textbook, you get 2 course readers for the entire year for like 50 dollars, which is a steal tbh, and Bu also supplements the class with handouts (for grammar and vocab). You usually don't have to take notes whe you first learn these things because of these handouts. CLASS OVERVIEW - Bu teaches in English pretty much, but she does throw in Indonesian phrases here and there that you'll come to understand eventually. Each lecture, you pretty much learn something new, so be prepared to move fast. I understand this is typical in the university setting, but it's kinda weird for a language class, especially since you're not meeting everyday. Exams occur weeks 3, 6 and 8, as well as finals week, although Indo 3 has only two exams during weeks 4 and 7 (I think?) + final test. So yeah, this class will pretty much always be your first exam of the quarter. Apart from exam weeks, the course is super chill, although a lot of the exercises can be intimidating because Bu likes to go around the class when working on exercises, and calls on random people here and there. There's also 4-5 homework assignments sprinkled throughout the quarter, which are basically writing assignments responding to a prompt (175-200 words). It's easy to get an A- on them, but you need to have <7 mistakes or so for an A. However, be prepared for a deadly week 10. Monday is a normal lecture/review day, but Wednesday is the final presentation. It's literally just a slide presentation of one of your homeworks, so not too bad, but definitely put in time so that you don't choke. And yes, it's in Indonesian. There's always another HW assignment due that Wednesday night too, so watch for that. On Friday, there's no formal discussion period, but you choose 15 minute time slots with a partner that you're randomly paired with to present a short skit on a prompt that Bu gives you, and afterwards, she asks you random questions about your life that test grammar and vocabulary learned throughout the quarter. An introvert's nightmare, indeed. INDO 1 - Indo one is a cakewalk, I kid you not. This is where knowing some Indonesian will put you miles ahead, as you mainly learn nouns, verbs, and how to ask questions. I always studied the day before the exams and did really well. But again, because of how easy the material was, any UCLA student could come in with no knowledge and do really well. Freest A+ in my career. I was hit kinda hard tho by the amount of things I had to prepare for during week 10, especially since I had to study for finals and had a ton of week 10 deadlines for other classes. The final test was definitely the hardest, as there was a writing prompt (essentially a homework), as well as a couple of miscellaneous words I forgot the translation of, resulting in a lot of lost points. INDO 2 - The beginning of Indo 2 is also ezpz, with really easy grammar and vocabulary. However, by the 2nd exam, you start to cover more complex grammar, and by the final, everyone was trippin. Overall pretty manageable though, and as long as you build a good buffer in the beginning of the quarter, you should be fine. INDO 3 - Oooooof. Let me just start by saying that this class is very hard; it's almost like an applied version of Ling 1, with quite a lot of emphasis on phonetics. There's like no sections in the exams dedicated to the vocabulary either, and a significant portion of the exams are dedicated to handout material that's not in the course reader. To top it off, a lot of native speakers that passed out of 1 and 2 join Indo 3, which is awesome for practicing Indo, but they're also really really good and can be intimidating to work with. Bu also seemed to use a ton of Indonesian in the first couple of days, which I was not used to, and I was high key lost af. I definitely had to study multiple times to prepare for the exams, as a lot of the grammar is based on understanding the context of the sentence and spatial orientation. It worked out in the end I guess? FINAL REMARKS - This class has reminded me that learning a language is not an easy journey, especially for an introvert, but the results are absolutely worth it. Although you learn really formal Indonesian (we use "Anda" for"you"), I still find myself understanding my parents and random facebook posts of Indonesian family members overseas with the knowledge I gained from this class, which is a skill I never envisioned I'd acquire when I first set foot on this campus. Beyond that, this class has taught me so much about Indonesian society and culture and instilled into me a genuine curiosity to figure out my own identity as an Indonesian American. Whether you're thinking about taking this class for your foreign language requirement, to finally learn Indonesian, or out of curiosity, these classes will serve you well. Lastly, quick plug but if you want to augment your experience in this class with social/political/cultural elements of Indonesian Americans, join the the Association of Indonesian Americans (we work closely with Bu and will probably have speaker events for extra credit hehe): https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=110313890518328&ref=br_rs