Extensive series of recent student graduates after graduation, outside with friends. Muti-ethnic group includes parents as well.

Things to Know Before Studying in Australia

If you want to have a smooth study abroad life in Australia, it is the key to understand this in advance! Due to the different cultural differences at home and abroad, we often don’t get used to it when we first arrive in Australia. This is not a problem for you alone, but a lot of international students will face. So before studying in Australia, you’d better know something important.

1. A firm determination to study

Australian universities pay more attention to cultivating students’ autonomous learning ability. Therefore, in addition to the school time, students also need to spend more time on reading and self-study outside of class. It is strongly recommended that you make full preparation before class, study during class, and review after class. This learning method is really important and useful. Why is pre-class preparation so important? I believe everyone has seen how thick the textbooks of their subjects are, usually hundreds of pages. However, in Australia, it is very common for teachers not to teach page by page in the classroom. Basically, they teach by jumping. They only focus on the key points and only the essence, and the rest is up to the students to comprehend. So in this case, you need to have a firm determination to study and work very hard while studying in Australia.

2. Cultivate self-management ability

Studying abroad must be high-intensity and high-pressure. In many cases, the self-learning ability of students is more needed, and the teaching of teachers will not be in place step by step. Therefore, it is extremely important to manage your time strictly. However, our time planning should not be limited to study, we should learn to leave some time for life, rationally arrange our extracurricular activities, social activities, and daily chores, and maintain a balance of the three. This is very necessary, but it is not a simple thing. It is recommended that everyone can put a calendar on their study desk, or develop the habit of using a notebook to make arrangements for study plans and entertainment activities in advance, so as to clarify the priority order and prevent life from becoming a mess.

3. Speak English bravely

Language communication skills have always had a profound impact on the quality of life of international students. For many international students, speaking English is a difficult obstacle. Many students who have achieved good English scores in their home countries will find that their English proficiency is not as good as they thought when they arrive in Australia. It is very common for students with an IELTS score of 7 to fail to understand in class and feel pressured when communicating with locals. If you feel pressured because of your language skills, don’t question yourself. You are definitely not the only one who feels this way. Every foreign student needs a process of adapting to the new life abroad. Overcoming psychological barriers and the courage to speak are the keys to breaking through this barrier. Don’t be afraid of your accent, wording or grammatical errors. We should listen more to the local people’s speech, get used to listening to the Australian pronunciation, consciously learn and imitate the way Australians communicate with other people, and write down sentences that we find interesting or useful. 

4. Communicate more with the teacher

Australian classrooms do not advocate learning methods such as teachers telling students to listen and then taking notes. Students’ active questions and discussions are very important to Australian teachers. For some subjects, participation in class discussions will be counted in the final grade. In Australia, teachers attach great importance to whether students actively answer questions in class and whether they interact with the teacher. Therefore, even if your spoken English is not good, you should try to speak and communicate with the teacher more proactively. If you are not afraid of making mistakes, you are afraid to speak. Any different thoughts and opinions can be shared. Of course, your content should be related to the course.

5. Take class well, and cherish it

The Australian education system may be a bit unaccustomed for new foreign students. Perhaps it is because of language problems, the teacher’s speed or accent, or the incomplete digestion of the content of the course, which leads to passive sabotage, gradually giving up, or even skipping class. But, thinking about your rare number of classes and expensive tuition fees, don’t you think it is a pity? In fact, class time is also an opportunity to improve language skills. In Australian classrooms, half of the time is generally taught by professors, and half of the time is spent by professors listening to students to report on their learning achievements. Generally, starting from the third week, each class will have a well-prepared student theme report. The group members will take turns to report their respective responsibility to the whole class. It takes about 5-10 minutes for one person. After that, the whole class will discuss with each other. Group members are responsible for answering questions, and finally the teacher comments. From the perspective of pre-class preparation, class presentations, teacher-student interaction and answering the questions of the entire special report, after-class group members must communicate and discuss, and prepare report materials together. In the classroom, all teachers and students have to publicly state the results of the research and answer various questions. This whole process is actually an opportunity to improve English.

6. Participate in club activities

As a medium for bringing together students with the same interests, club activities are obviously a good way to make friends. However, don’t think that the club is just for casual play. Your serious participation can reflect your abilities and personality, which will be seen by everyone and start the road to making friends. In the beginning of the school season, each school will have an O-week, and all major clubs in the school will set up stalls to recruit members. It is suggested that joining a society should not be based on quantity, but on quality. Find a club that matches your hobbies, make friends, learn from it, and enrich your overseas study life.

7. Not afraid of cultural differences

If you want to integrate into life abroad as soon as possible, it is very necessary to learn more about the differences in daily life and culture between your home country and Australia. When dealing with Australians, you can learn more about local cultural traditions and some daily taboos. In addition, when communicating with locals, try to learn local language expressions, such as Australian slang. In addition, you can pay more attention to local news, popular movies, TV dramas and songs, go outdoors more during the holidays, participate in local activities, and accumulate some interesting topics. 

If you also want to know more about study abroad and other information, please visit CatEight, a comprehensive platform for studying abroad.