Behavioral Tips for Studying in Australia
Even in a culture like Australian, which doesn’t seem so dissimilar to ours compared to, say, Asian cultures, there are some pitfalls for visitors. If you don’t know what behavior is expected, you may not even notice why the person is reacting so strangely to you. Therefore, here are some behavioral tips that should help avoid faux pas.
Australians are known for their open-mindedness and friendliness. Therefore, visitors to Australia should be just as friendly and open. The friendliness and verbal friendliness as well as the salutation “Mate” should not be confused with a quickly made friendship. Just like in Germany, it usually takes time in Australia for friendships to develop.
A willingness to help and a sense of humor are typical for Australians and are also welcome. By the way, it is quite different from the criticism that is brought forward directly, which many Germans tend to take without meaning anything. In Australia, however, they are uncomfortably noticeable. It is part of good manners to package criticism as nicely as possible.
Just like in the USA, in Australia the question “How are you?” Is usually nothing more than a greeting. Nobody should pour out their hearts afterwards. The commonly expected answer is: “Fine, thanks.” Problems are generally not a welcome topic for small talk. Incidentally, this also applies to the fact that Australia emerged from a convict colony, as well as the situation of the Aborigines associated with colonization. In Australia, these are better than indigenous Australians or Aboriginal people. The term “Aboriginie”, used naturally in Germany, has a derogatory meaning in Australia. Respect is shown to the native Australians by not entering their spiritually significant places, such as Uluru, better known as Ayers Rock.
When going out to a pub, it is often common to have rounds for a drink. This means that everyone within a group should serve a drink once. Anyone waiting to be admitted, for example in clubs, or waiting for service at the service counters, should wait patiently in line in Australia. Pushing forward doesn’t go down well at all. Guests at a barbecue, also known colloquially as a barbie, usually bring drinks and sometimes grilled meat or other food with them. When invited to dinner, it is common to give wine or chocolate as a gift. It is considered polite to ask the hosts if you should contribute your own food and to help with clearing.
With gestures that have positive connotations in this country, foreigners in Australia can also quickly offend. Hand signs like “thumbs up” or “peace” or “victory” do not have the same meaning in Australia and some other countries as in Germany. Instead, they represent an insult. The cultural differences between Australia and Germany manifest themselves so well in hand signals.
The dos and don’ts in Australia at a glance
|Friendliness and open-mindedness||When asked “How are you?”, Report on your own problems|
|Humor||Political discussions about Aborigines|
|Looseness||Talks on the history of Australia as a British penal colony|
|Use first names||Hand signals that are offensive in Australia|
|Treat yourself to a round when going out with others||Jostling in queues|
|Wrap up criticism nicely||Enter spiritually significant Aboriginal places without permission|
|Bring drinks and sometimes also groceries with invitations to the barbecue|
|Make a gift for dinner invitations|
Benefit for international students
According to educationvv, international students who choose to complete a degree or a semester abroad in Australia at a University of the Group of Eight study at one of Australia’s most internationally renowned universities. Research and teaching are closely linked there. The students benefit from the fact that the course content is therefore very progressive and that the teaching itself is very research-based. If you have a stay at an elite university on your résumé, you can also score points with HR staff.
Top placements of the members of the Group of Eight in international university rankings
The special position of the Group of Eight is also evident in international university rankings. In the QS ranking as well as in the Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU) and in the Times Higher Education World University Rankings, all members of the Group of Eight are among the best 200 universities worldwide. This makes them the best-ranked Australian universities.
The universities of the Group of Eight also stand out in the QS Rankings by Subject: All of the members’s law schools can position themselves among the top 100 in the ranking of these institutions. Four of them even make it into the top 20. They can also be found in the top 100 in medicine, psychology, and education, as well as with at least one subject in the field of engineering.