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Introduction to Basic Malay Language Course

Hi, welcome!
Bahasa Malaysia is Malaysia's national language and was formerly known as Bahasa Melayu (Malay language)*. It is not only spoken in Malaysia but is also widely spoken in Indonesia, Brunei and Singapore. Some people say that Bahasa Malaysia is an easy language. To a certain extent it is, but the truth is there is no EASY language in the world. Everything is relative so when people say that Malay is an easy language what they really mean is that it IS easy when compared to studying a language like English, French or Mandarin, for example.
Thus if you might need to spend at least 300 hours studying English, French or Mandarin before you are able to use it in a simple conversation, you need only spend say, 100 hours studying Malay before you are able to do so. This is because in Malay there is no past tense or past participles of verbs to study as in English, the verbs are not conjugated as in French and you don't have to worry about getting the tones right in order to be understood as you have to in Mandarin.
But there is still a core vocabulary to be learnt - for colours, common adjectives, common verbs, names of objects around you, relationships, greetings, numbers, days of the week, telling the time, etc. etc. Not to mention about an aspect of Bahasa Malaysia that is particularly difficult for foreigners to master, namely the use of prefixes in verbs.
So it is still 100 hours of solid study and hard work! And by 100 hours I don't mean 4 days and 4 hours of non-stop studying. It's more likely to be an hour's concentrated study every day over a period of three and a half months.
So don't expect me to lead you up the garden path by telling you how easy the Malay language is. But if you are determined there is no reason why you cannot pick it up on your own with this course. Good luck! - Webmaster
(Grateful thanks to Michelle Nor Ismat, a native speaker, for volunteering to give a second reading to the course lessons.)

Lesson 1 - Nama/Ganti nama (Name/Pronouns)
Lesson 2 - Bahasa (Language)
Lesson 3 - Ini...(This is...)
Lesson 4 - Orang Inggeris (Englishman)
Lesson 5 - Nombor 1-9
Lesson 6 - Berapa? (How many?)
Lesson 7 - Hari ini hari apa? (What day is it today?)
Lesson 8 - Nombor 10-99. Berapa umur anda? (How old are you?)
Lesson 9 - Pukul berapa sekarang? (What time is it now?)
Lesson 10 - Bulan ini bulan apa? (What month is this month?)
Lesson 11 - Apa khabar? (How are you?)
Lesson 12 - Warna (Colours)
Lesson 13 - Belum (Not yet)
Lesson 14 - Hendak (Wish to)
Lesson 15 - Akan (Will)
Lesson 16 - Kalau (If)
Lesson 17 - Questions with "Bila" (When)
Lesson 18 - Jangan (Don't)
Lesson 19 - Questions with "Apa" (What?)
Lesson 20 - Maafkan saya (Excusing oneself)
Lesson 21 - Questions with "Di mana" (Where?)
Lesson 22 - Nombor (100 and above)
Lesson 23 - Apa yang anda suka makan? (What do you like to eat?)
Lesson 24 - Apa yang anda hendak minum? (What do you wish to drink?)
Lesson 25 - Mengapa (Why)
Lesson 26 - Questions beginning with "Boleh"
Lesson 27 - Barangkali (Perhaps)
Lesson 28 - Selalu (Always)
Lesson 29 - Questions with "Siapa" (Who?)/Family members
Lesson 30 - Sejuk (Cold)
Lesson 31 - The present continuous tense
Lesson 32 - Suka (To like)
Lesson 33 - Sangat (Very)
Lesson 34 - Sila (Please - extending an invitation)
Lesson 35 - Sudah (The past tense)
Lesson 36 - Tadi (Just now)
Lesson 37 - Tidak ("Not" - with adjectives)
Lesson 38 - Tolong (Please - asking a service)
Lesson 39 - Untuk (For)
Lesson 40 - Yang mana? (Which one?)
Lesson 41 - Dengan (With)
Lesson 42 - Saya hendak beli...(I wish to buy...)
Lesson 43 - Berapa harganya? (What's the price?)
Lesson 44 - Short forms (nak, tak, etc.)
Lesson 45 - Prepositions (to, from some place)
Lesson 46 - Prepositions (to, from, for someone)
Lesson 47 - Adjectives and Synonyms
Lesson 48 - Betulkah? (Is that true?)
Lesson 49 - Sebutan1 (Pronunciation1)
Lesson 50 - Sebutan2 (Pronunciation2)
Lesson 51 - Bukan ("Not" - with nouns)
Lesson 52 - Masih (Still)
Lesson 53 - Use of "pernah" (ever)
Lesson 54 - Alamat (Address)
Lesson 55 - Dia kata... (He said that...)
Lesson 56 - Badan (Parts of the body)
Lesson 57 - Sakit (Sick)
Lesson 58 - Making Comparisons
Lesson 59 - Pekerjaan (Occupations)
Lesson 60 - Penjodoh Bilangan (Classifiers)
Lesson 61 - Apa ini? (What is this?)
Lesson 62 - Presenting oneself
Lesson 63 - Compliments and criticisms
Lesson 64 - Signboard language
APPENDIX - The pe(N), me(N) and ber- prefixes
A QUICK REVISION (Lessons 1-20)

*The language was known as "Bahasa Malaysia" with the creation of Malaysia in 1963, having been decreed as the national language of Malaysia. In 1986 it was replaced by the term "Bahasa Melayu" (Malay language). However in 2007 Malaysia's Parliament decided that as it is Malaysia's national language, it should be called "Bahasa Malaysia" and this is the name that is used for the language today.

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