A-Z Indonesian Acronyms – Examples and Meaning

Hi, welcome back again!

After deep exploration about Indonesian Phonology, including Indonesian Phonetics and Its Theory as well as Indonesian Phonemes, it is the right time to learn about another branch of linguistics–Morphology. It is a linguistics branch that study about word forming (study about morphemes). You may have learned some of it in Mastering Bahasa, such as Forming Indonesian Words & Using Indonesian Affixes and Indonesian Prefixes. But, in this opportunity, we will learn about A-Z Indonesian Acronyms.

One of the functions of acronym is efficiency. On the other words, instead of pronouncing or writing longer name, people tend to abbreviate it to more shorten version. In addition, it is become more memorable, even sometimes people forget about the origin words. Here are the examples of several English acronym.

  • B.C. = before Christ
  • A.D = Anno Domini (Could you guess the literal meaning?
  • radar = radio detection and ranging (Remember?)
  • JB = Jonas Brothers or Justin Bieber? (or even does not have a meaning for you?)
  • X’mas = Christmas

There are two types of abbreviation in Indonesia. The first one is singkatan, which defined as set of letter that formed by abbreviation. It is similar with initialism despite singkatan is also includes shortened words. On the other side is akronim, which is formed by letters (usually first) or syllables combination that pronounced as common word. This is similar with English acronym. Although we will be more focus with the letter one, let’s break down both examples so you know the difference.

Acronyms in Indonesia + Meaning

Notes: The meaning might not be 100% equivalent, but it is more ore less similar. The most important thing is it pronounced as a common word. Let’s take a look at these examples of A-Z Indonesian Acronyms

Check also: Indonesian Phonemes

  • ABRI = Angkatan Bersenjata Republik Indonesia (Indonesian National Armed Forces-old name)
  • AIDS = Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome
  • angkot = angkutan kota (city/public transportation)
  • Kopaja = Koperasi Angkutan Jakarta (Jakarta Transport Cooperative)
  • ASI = Air Susu Ibu (breast milk)
  • Bappenas = Badan Perencanaan Pembangunan Nasional (Indonesian Ministry of National Development Planning)
  • bandara = bandar udara (airport)
  • balita = bawah lima tahun (children under 5 y.o.)
  • batita = bawah tiga tahun (children under 3 y.o.)
  • bimbel = bimbingan belajar (tuition classes)
  • capres = calon presiden (president candidate)
  • cawapres = calon wakil president (V.P. candidate)
  • cerpen = cerita pendek (short story)
  • cergam = cerita bergambar (story, supported by pictures/illustration)
  • cerbung = cerita bersambung (continuous story)
  • curanmor = pencurian kendaraan bermotor (motor vehicle theft)
  • DAMRI = Djawatan Angkutan Motor Republik Indonesia (Indonesian state owned public transit bus company)
  • Dikti = Pendidikan Tinggi (Higher Education)
  • ditjen = direktorat jenderal (directorate)
  • golput = golongan putih (non-voters, group of people that do not use their vote)
  • GOR/Gelora = Gedung Olah Raga (multi-purpose Stadium)
  • HAM = Hak Asasi Manusia (human-rights)
  • hankam = Pertahanan dan Keamanan (Defense and Security, refers to Soldier and Police)
  • Hardiknas = Hari Pendidikan Nasional (Indonesian Education Day/ May 2)
  • Harpitnas = Hari Kejepit Nasional (a single working day between holidays and/or weekends)
  • humas = hubungan masyarakat (PR- public relation)
  • IPA = Ilmu Pengetahuan Alam (science)
  • ipoleksosbud = ideologi, politik, ekonomi, sosial, budaya (ideology, politics, economy, social, culture)
  • Jamsostek = Jaminan Sosial Tenaga Kerja (Employees Social Security System)
  • juklak = petunjuk pelaksanaan (event execution guidelines)
  • jubir = juru bicara (spokesman)
  • kabid = kepala bidang (Head of Department)
  • kades = kepala desa (head of village/headman)
  • kepsek = Kepala Sekolah (Headmaster)
  • Kedubes = Kedutaan Besar (Embassy)
  • jagung = Jaksa Agung (Attorney General)
  • Komnas = komisi national (Nation Commission)
  • Kopassus = Komandan Pasukan Khusus (Indonesian Army special forces group)
  • lapas = Lembaga Permasyarakatan (Correctional Institution/prison)
  • Lekra = Lembaga Kebudayaan Rakyat (People Cultural Institution)
  • LSM = Lembaga Swadaya Masyarakat (NGO)
  • Manikebu = Manifes Kebudayaan (Cultural Manifesto)
  • Monas = Monument National (National Monument – Jakarta’s notable landmark)
  • Munas = Museum National (National Museum/Museum Gajah in Jakarta) 
  • MURI = Museum Rekor Indonesian (Indonesian World Records Museum)
  • Musang = Musyawarah Anggota (Members Deliberation/Great Deliberation)
  • GAM = Gerakan Aceh Merdeka (Free Aceh Movement)
  • NU = Nahdlatul Ulama (it is Indonesian biggest Muslim organization)
  • ormas = organisasi masyarakat (NGO)
  • orgil = orang gila (crazy person)
  • PON = Pekan Olahraga Nasional (National Sports Week)
  • NIM = Nomor Induk Mahasiswa (College/University Student ID number)
  • NIS = Nomor Induk Siswa ([primary/secondary-school] Student ID number)
  • NISN = Nomor Induk Siswa Nasional (National primary/secondary-school] Student ID number)
  • patas = cepat terbatas (fast and limited-refer to type of local bus)
  • Perbasi = Persatuan Basket Indonesia (Indonesian Basketball Association)
  • pelita = pembangunan lima tahun (five-years Development – Orde Baru era)
  • Pelni = Pelayaran Nasional Indonesia (Indonesian National Lines)
  • pemilu = pemilihan umum (general election)
  • penjaskes = pendidikan jasmani dan kesehatan (Physical Education)
  • Perfini = Persatuan Film Nasional Indonesia (Indonesian National Film Association – production company)
  • Persija = Persatuan Sepak Bola Indonesia Jakarta (Jakarta Football Club)
  • Peta = Pembela Tanah Air (Defenders of The Homeland – one of Indonesian pre-Independence army)
  • pilkada = pemilihan kepala daerah (governor/mayor election)
  • pimpro = pimipinan produksi/pimpinan proyek (head of production/project manager)
  • Polri = Polisi Republik Indonesian (Indonesian Republic Police Force)
  • ponsel = telepon seluler (mobile phone)
  • presdir = presiden direktur (President Director)
  • PUEBI = Pedoman Umum Ejaan Bahasa Indonesia (General Guidelines of Indonesian Spelling)
  • pungli = pungutan liar (illegal fees)
  • Puskesmas = Pusat Kesehatan Masyarakat (government-mandated community health clinics)
  • pelakor = perebut laki orang (husband-theft, a woman who dated a married man)
  • rudal = peluru kendali (missile)
  • ruko = rumah toko (house-shop, a multi-functioned building: as a living place and shop)
  • rusun = rumah susun (stacking houses like apartment but more affordable)
  • rutan = rumah tahanan (prison) 
  • samsat = Sistem Administrasi Manunggal Satu Atap (One-Roof Administration System)
  • SARA = suku, agama, ras, dan antargolongan (ethnic group, religion, race, inter-group relation)
  • Sekjen = Sekretaris Jenderal (General Secretary)
  • sidak = Inspeksi Mendadak (Sudden/unexpected inspection)
  • sikon = situasi dan kondisi (situation and condition)
  • SP-1 = Surat Peringatan 1/Surat Peringatan Pertama (First Warning-Letter)
  • Suramadu = Surabaya–Madura (refer to a bridge connecting both places)
  • tapol = tahanan politic (prisoner of conscience/political prisoner)
  • tilang = bukti pelanggaran (traffic-violation ticket)
  • TIM = Taman Ismail Marzuki (Indonesian art and cultural centre)
  • wapres = wakil presiden (Vice President)
  • warteg = warung tegal (a lower-class eating place)
  • warnet = warung internet (Internet Cafe, place where you pay to access their internet)
  • wartel = warung telekomunikasi (telephone center, where you pay to call someone)
  • WITA = Waktu Indonesian Bagian Tengah (Indonesian Central Standard Time-GMT+8)
  • WIT = Waktu Indonesian Bagian Timur (Indonesian Eastern Standard Time-GMT+9)
  • Walubi = Perwakilan Umat Buddha Indonesian (Indonesian Buddhist Representative)
  • Jabodetabek = Jakarta, Bogor, Depok, Tangerang, Bekasi
  • Kalsel = Kalimantan Selatan (South Kalimantan)

(Singkatan) Acronym in Indonesia + Example

Now, take a look at these examples of singkatan (I believe you would notice the difference). Check also Indonesian Phonetics

  • UGM = Universitas Gadjah Mada (Gadjah Mada Univeristy)
  • WNI = Warga Negara Indonesian (Indonesian Citizen)
  • SDA = Sumber Daya Alam (Natural Resources)
  • SDM = Sumber Daya Manusia (Human Resources)
  • WTS = Wanita Tuna Susila (prostitute)
  • UUD ’45 = Undang-Undang Dasar ’45 (Indonesian Constitution)
  • TK = Taman Kanak-Kanak (kindergarten)
  • SD = Sekolah Dasar (elementary school)
  • SMP = Sekolah Menengah Atas (Junior High School)
  • SMA = Sekolah Menengah Atas (Senior High School)
  • S-1 = Strata Satu (Bachelor)
  • S-2 = Strata Dua (Master)
  • S-3 = Strata Tiga (Doctorate)
  • D-3 = Diploma Tiga (Diploma)
  • SPBU = Stasiun Pengisian Bahan Bakar Umum (Petrol Station)
  • RS = Rumah Sakit (Hospital)
  • RSJ = Rumah Sakit Jiwa (asylum)
  • RI = Republik Indonesia (Indonesian Republic)
  • NKRI = Negara Kesatuan Repbulik Indonesia ([Archipelago State of] Indonesian Republic)
  • RRT = Republik Rakyat Tiongkok (People Republic of Tiongkok)
  • PT = Perseroan Terbatas (LLC/Limited Liability Company)
  • PTN = Perguruan Tinggi Negeri (Public Universities)
  • PTS = Perguruan Tinggi Swasta (Private Universities)
  • PRJ = Pekan Raya Jakarta (Jakarta Fair)
  • TNI = Tentara Nasional Indonesia (Indonesian National Armed Force-recent name)
  • AURI = Angkatan Udara Republik Indonesia (Indonesian Air Force)
  • FFI = Festival Film Indonesia (Indonesian Film Festival – Rewards Ceremony)
  • AS = Amerika Serikat (United States of America)
  • ATM = Anjungan Tunai Mandiri (Automated Teller Machine)
  • BBM = Bahan Bakar Minyak (Fuel, also Blackberry Messenger)
  • OKB = Orang Kaya Baru (Newly rich people – usually linked to negative connotation)

Related to Places

  • DKI = Daerah Khusus Ibukota (Special Capital Region – for Jakarta only)
  • DIY = Daerah Istimewa Yogyakarta (Special Region of Yogyakarta – not Do It Yourself!)
  • NAD = Nanggroe Aceh Darussalam
  • NTT = Nusa Tenggara Timur
  • NTB = Nusa Tenggara Barat 

Related to Title

  • Bpk. = Bapak (Mr.)
  • Ir. = insinyur (old title for engineer)
  • S.S. = Sarjana Sastra (Bachelor of Literature)
  • S.E. = Sarjana Ekonomi (Bachelor of Economics)
  • S.T. = Sarjana Teknik (Bachelor of Engineering)
    *In Indonesia, both bachelor (sarjana) and master (magister) has more specific name than just Arts and Science
  • Dr. = Doctor (equal to Ph.D)
  • dr. = dokter (doctor)
  • H./Hj. = Haji(male)/Hajjah (female) (title for a Muslim who has been to Mecca as a pilgrim)
  • R.A. = Raden Ajeng
  • R.M. = Raden Mas
  • Rr. Raden Roro

lowercase singkatan

  • a.n. = on behalf of
  • yth. = Dear (respected)
  • ytc. = Dear (loved) – more intimate
  • ytk. = Dear (loved)
  • no. = nomor (number)
  • Jln. = jalan (street [for address/street name)
  • hlm. = halaman (page)
  • s.d. = sampai dengan (until)

Non-formal lowercase singkatan

  • yg = yang (which)
  • dr = dari (from)
  • jd = jadi (so, okay)
  • gmn = bagaimana (how)
  • dgn = dengan (with)
  • spy = supaya (so)
  • ttd = tertanda
  • t4 = tempat (place/case (pencil))
    *4 is empat (four)
  • s7 = agree
    *7 is tujuh (seven), s7= stujuh (informal form of setuju/agree)

You probably find it in short message/chat like this (and also it depends on individual style). Mostly it’s only take the consonant, except if the vowel is really needed.

  • syg km lg ap?
    Sayang kamu lagi apa? (What are you doing my dear)

Could you find and collect more of A-Z Indonesian Acronyms? or maybe singkatan? I guarantee there are still tons of Acronyms and singkatan out there. But, it might not same in one region to another, or one individual to another because some of it are local/regional knowledge and arbitrary, but not universal. Keep learning! You could also enhance your knowledge with these articles. Take a look!