About IPLL

Department of Indo-Pacific Languages & Literatures

The Department of Indo-Pacific (IP) Languages and Literatures provides an opportunity without parallel elsewhere in the country for students to acquire an in-depth knowledge of the languages and cultures of that part of the world that encompasses more than 25 percent of the Earth’s population and an unusual diversity of peoples.


The Department provides instruction in the languages of the Indo-Pacific area to a broad spectrum of students at the University. The coverage of these languages is unique in the United States: this is the only department in the country to offer a BA degree in Philippine Language and Literature (Filipino or Ilokano) and the only one to offer every national language of Southeast Asia, as well as classical and modern Indian languages.

IPLL offers the following language courses on a regular basis: Arabic, Cambodian (Khmer), Chamorro, Filipino, Ilokano, Marshallese, Maori, Indonesian-Malay, Hindi-Urdu, Samoan, Sanskrit, Tahitian, Thai, Tongan and Vietnamese. Additional languages and topics may be offered on an as-needed basis.


Beyond language, the department offers courses in the literatures and cultures of the area, including literature in translation of South and Southeast Asia, and the Philippines.

Study Abroad

Opportunities are available for study abroad in Cambodia, the Philippines, Thailand, and other Indo-Pacific countries. Inquire at the IPLL department office for more information.

Degree Requirements

All of the department’s elementary- and intermediate-level language courses may be used to fulfill the Hawaiian or second language requirement for all bachelor’s degrees on the Manoa campus.

Enhance Career Opportunities

Students of Indo-Pacific languages and cultures can also enhance their opportunities to find a career in international relations; provide service to the community in such fields as social work, public health, nursing, medicine, and law; perform research on Asia and the Pacific; and develop cross-cultural awareness and understanding in Hawai`i’s multicultural environment.