Australia – About the Country

Incredibly beautiful country with a wide range of scenic and leisure opportunities Internationally acclaimed education options for international students, including many English language

Options

Excellent pathway and articulation between programmes such as diploma to degree
Competitive in terms of cost of living and study
Multicultural, friendly society, with over 400,000 international students coming to study each year
Location and Geography
Australia is an island continent of approximately 7.7 million square
kilometres, making it the sixth-largest country in the world. Located
between the Indian Ocean and the South Pacific Ocean, it is the oldest, lowest (apart from Antarctica), and driest continent. Because of its unique and varied geography, it is an archaeologist’s delight, with landforms dating back millions of years. Australia is mostly flat, but has some notable mountains and long beaches. Canberra is the capital.

Climate

The climate ranges from tropical in the north to temperate in the south. The largest part of Australia is desert or semi-arid. Overall, Australian cities enjoy a mild climate, with maximum temperatures falling in a fairly narrow range (e.g., in the summer in Sydney, the temperature might range from 16° to 26° Celsius). But the continent is large, and international students should be informed about the individual climates of the regions they are interested in. They should also be aware that the Australian sun can be very strong.

History and Population

Aboriginal peoples settled Australia about 60,000 years ago – there were many distinct languages and dialects, and customs varied greatly from region to region. British settlement began in 1788, and for a time Australia was actually used as a penal colony (the first fleet of convicts arrived January 26, 1788, and the country still marks this occasion on that date with a holiday called Australia Day). The penal era ended in 1868. The settlement developed into six self-governing colonies which federated in 1901 to form Australia, a nation founded on ideals of egalitarianism, human rights, harmony, and democracy. Since the 1950s, large numbers of displaced people have immigrated to Australia, and this has had a profound effect on its society and culture. The population is more than 21 million, and is highly urbanised. Just over 60% of Australians live in the main cities and almost 80% within 100 kilometres of a major city. Nearly one in four Australians were born overseas. Australia is predominantly a Christian country, with English the official language. It is a member of the British Commonwealth.