About the Program
Coursework in Khmer at the University of Hawai’i (UH) is offered by the Department of Hawaiian and Indo-Pacific Languages and Literatures and includes four levels of study. Courses on other aspects of Cambodia (such as history, anthropology, archeology, art history, historic preservation, economics, environmental studies, peace studies, business, and Asian Studies) are offered by experts on the staff of other UH departments. The Khmer language course at UH is coordinated by Prof. Dr. Chhany Sak-Humphry.
Fulfilling the Language Requirement and the Certificate in Khmer
Introductory and intermediate coursework in Khmer may be used to fulfill the foreign language requirement for all bachelor’s degrees on the Manoa campus. Upon completing 15 credit hours from the intermediate level up with a 3.0 GPA in his/her coursework, the student may apply for a Certificate in Khmer. Also, the Khmer language through online classes is offered. Please refer to this page.
About the Language
Khmer is the official language of Cambodia and one of the major languages of Southeast Asia. It is spoken by thirteen million people in Cambodia and three million more outside Cambodia. It belongs to a family of languages widely distributed in southern Asia and is the idiom of one of the earliest of the great nation-states in the region. As such it is the vehicle of sophisticated forms of architecture, plastic arts, music, dance, literature, and statecraft which are transmitted to Cambodia’s neighbors, and which are still admired today. The writing system it employs is a member of the Indic script family, which spreads from India into Inner Asia and all Southeast Asia except Vietnam. Khmer is non-tonal but has vowel distinctions not found in English; its grammar is uncomplicated, with neither verb conjugations nor noun declensions, and is not unlike that of English.