Haitian Creole is spoken by Haiti's entire population of over 8 million and nearly 1 million people in the Haitian Diaspora in the U.S. Haitian Creole courses at Indiana University provide an introduction to the rich, African-based folk culture and religion of the world's first black republic. Haitian Creole, the second official language of Haiti, is closely related to other French Creole languages of the area, in Guadeloupe, Martinique, Dominica, St. Lucia, French Guiana, and Louisiana. Haitian Creole is an essential means of communication for professionals in the fields of education, health, and social services in Haiti.
Indiana University's Haitian Creole lecturer, David Tezil, was born in Port-au-Prince. Dr. Tezil served as an interpreter and language facilitator for the Department of Multicultural Education of Palm Beach School District in Florida. He has contributed to the implementation of bilingual and multicultural learning materials for Haitian speaking students and adult literacy programs. He completed his Ph.D. in linguistics at Indiana University in 2019.
Indiana University has been one of the country's leading institutions for the instruction of Haitian Creole for over 50 years. The Creole Institute at Indiana University was long recognized as the only center in the United States equipped to deal in depth with linguistic and related educational issues in Haiti. Today the Creole Institute's rich heritage in Haitian Creole pedagogy continues with the development of a new Beginning Haitian Creole textbook, together with partners at the University of Florida and Florida International University.