recommended language schools
Why would you pay a large sum of your hard-earned cash for an intensive language course from a university in the USA or Australia when you can travel to SE Asia, rent a room with a view, pay for language lessons, and live on the local economy for 3 months, while enjoying food and drink, using the language with locals in real-world situations, all for the same price? That said, with the exception of the language schools in Yogyakarta, I've had mixed experiences with language schools in the region; some of the teachers are not highly qualified and classes get canceled at the last minute, etc. On the other hand, this is a valuable cultural learning experience. Just be sure not to pay for more than 1 week's worth of classes at a time and communicate clearly your own learning goals directly with your teacher(s) and you should have few problems.
AUA Language Centers
AUA (American University Alumni) are better than most of the smaller language schools across the country. Prices are reasonable and teachers qualified.There are 3 levels of group classes: 1-3 = elementary - intermediate level of Thai. The Bangkok center is by far the most robust, with all levels operating continuously morning to eve. Chiang Mai has regular terms, 2 hrs/day, 10 hrs/week, which can be supplemented with individual instruction. Pattaya and Rayong also have centers, but classes above level 1 (beginner) are usually tentative and on-demand, and often unavailable.
Payap University, Chiang Mai
Payap University offers 4-week intensive Thai courses at 8 different levels, 3 hours per day M-F for a total of 60 hours. The price is 8000 baht per course. Courses are not offered during the month of Dec and first week of Jan. I cannot vouch for this course personally, but the university is reputable and 8 levels is better than AUA's 3.
There are several schools located in Ho Chi Minh City which all seem fairly similar and provide one-on-one language training tailored to individual needs. I cannot vouch yet for the quality of instruction or differences between the schools:
VNC Language Courses - about $10 US / hour
Vietnamese Language Garden - $ 6 - 10 US / hour
NUS (National University of Singapore) used to offer a wide variety of SE Asian languages to the community through their Extension school (NEX). Regretfully, they decided to stop doing so. At this time, there is no good, cheap way for adults to learn SE Asian languages intensively in Singapore.
The best place by far to study Indonesian and/or Javansese is in Yogyakarta due to the hospitality of the locals and lower prices. 'Jogja' is known for its many universities and for being the traditional center of Javanese art and culture. There are several language schools in the city all offering good service. I recommend Alam Bahasa or Pandu, which are both reputable and cheaper.
Pandu Indonesian Language Course
This small school is located in Godean, on the outskirts of Yogyakarta. The owner, Galang, is friendly and highly educated with a lifelong interest in English and foreign cultures. He has also written several Indonesian novels. The school will tailor individual courses to meet your needs and schedule, and can teach you both Indonesian and Javanese. They also host a number of exchange students, and can assist with any accommodation, visa issues, etc.
GKS Language School - Cebu. A small German school that also has Tagalog (Filipino) and Visayan-Cebuano.
North American Lang. Academy (NALA) - offers a wide range of courses, inc. Tagalog and Visayan http://www.nalacebu.com/
RUPP (Royal University of Phnom Penh) offers 8-10 week Khmer classes at 4 levels, for the public, 4 times/year. http://www.rupp.edu.kh/center/kf/?page=introduction
The Khmer School of Language offers tailored one-on-one or small group instruction in Phnom Penh.
other schools, Region-WiDE
See the Learn 4 Good website:
Since Indonesian & Malaysian are basically the same language, I recommend going to Yoyga to study Indonesian, versus going to Malaysia. It will be cheaper and you will get more practice speaking with locals, since more Malaysians will speak to you in English.
YMCA in KL - beginning Malaysian, as well as Thai courses: http://www.ymcakl.com/index.php?choice=701
A to Z Language Centre - KL. Tailored individual/group, $15 - 18/hr.