Study Abroad

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Australia Overview

Drenched in sunshine and glowing with affable charisma, Australia is an enticing land of vast beaches, pulsating cities and reams and reams of bushland. One of the country`s greatest lures is its sense of space; a beach, patch of tropical forest or piece of sandy desert all to oneself is an easy reality. This, the world`s largest island, encompasses a range of stunning landscapes, from barren deserts to tropical rainforests and rugged mountains.
Australia has an abundance of unique animal life - cuddly koalas, bounding kangaroos and wallabies, darting dingoes, and ungainly emus - while the hulking form of Uluru (Ayers Rock) soaking up the reds and oranges of the outback`s fiery sun, is the country`s most iconic image.
Glossy Sydney and arty Melbourne provide much for the city-lover; Brisbane is gateway to the tropical northeast with sandy stretches including Surfer`s Paradise further south; restful Adelaide is perfect for a few days` rejuvenation, while Perth is young, brash and alluring; and Cairns is the stop-off point for one of Australia`s top attractions, the Great Barrier Reef.

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Australia History & Culture

Captain Cook stumbled onto Australian shores in 1770 to find an Aboriginal way of life that went back some 40,000 years. By 1868, Britain had sent more than 160,000 convicts to Australia.
Experiencing the culture of Australia`s indigenous population is one of the great highlights of a visit. Many tensions still exist between mainstream Australia and its Aboriginal people. The first European settlers treated the Aboriginal population with appalling brutality, which gave way to racist and cruel policies from subsequent administrations. However, the slow march towards reconciliation was given a boost in 2008 when Prime Minister Kevin Rudd issued a formal apology to the indigenous population for the suffering of the past.
The Labor government`s stimulus package and strong trading links with China have resulted in Australia riding out the 2008/2009 global financial crisis relatively unscathed. The government withdrew its troops from Iraq in early 2008, yet retains 1,500 troops in the Uruzgan province of Afghanistan.

Australia society

Social Conventions

A largely informal atmosphere prevails; shaking hands is the customary greeting. Casual wear is worn everywhere except in the most exclusive restaurants, social gatherings and important business meetings. Most restaurants forbid smoking.

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Canada Overview

Few countries in the world offer as many choices to the traveller as Canada. Whether your passion is skiing, sailing, museum-combing or indulging in exceptional cuisine, Canada has it all. Western Canada is renowned for its stunningly beautiful countryside; Eastern Canada mixes the flavour and charm of Europe with the bustle of New York; wildlife viewing is at its best in Northern Canada; and everywhere you will be surprised by how much more there is to this country than just maple syrup and Mounties.
However, Canada also has its fair share of unsavoury history. Indigenous peoples (including the Inuit of the far north and members of Canada`s First Nations) maintain that traditional lands were taken from them by force or subterfuge by previous governments. There have been some small measures to tackle their grievances: in 1993, a land claim settlement gave the Inuit control over a 350,000 sq km (135,135 sq miles) area of the Northwest Territories; in 1999, the federal government created the new territory of Nunavut from these and additional lands.

Canada Culture & History

Culture and History:

The first Europeans to reach Canada were descendants of Norse seafarers who had settled in Iceland and in Greenland during the 9th and 10th centuries; the second wave of European arrivals, led by the Italian navigator Giovanni Caboto (better known as John Cabot), were seeking a passage to Asia, in 1497.
Over the next 100 years, attracted by rich fishing grounds, English and French commercial interests flocked to Newfoundland. During the 17th century, the French accelerated trading with the New France Company. The creation of England`s Hudson`s Bay Company initiated a long period of rivalry, culminating in the Anglo-French war of the early 1760s; this ended with the surrender of the French Canadian capital, Quebec, to the English forces. The Treaty of Paris, in 1763, gave all French territories in north-east America to the British. Within two decades, however, the English had been ousted from their American colonies following defeat in the American War of Independence.
A 1995 referendum in Quebec resulted in an extremely narrow vote in favour of remaining inside Canada. Liberal Party leader Jean Chretien - Prime Minister from 1993-2003 - was succeeded by Paul Martin. Stephen Harper was elected as Prime Minister in 2006.

Canada Culture & History

Social Conventions

Handshaking predominates as the normal mode of greeting. Close friends often exchange kisses on the cheeks, particularly in French-speaking areas. Codes of practice for visiting homes are the same as in other Western countries: flowers, chocolates or a bottle of wine are common gifts for hosts, and dress is generally informal and practical according to climate. It is common for black tie and other required dress to be indicated on invitations. Exclusive clubs and restaurants often require more formal dress. Smoking has been banned in most public areas. Most restaurants, theatres and cinemas, if they permit smoking, have large `no smoking` areas.

New Zealand Overview

New Zealand Overview

New Zealand is a unique land of breathtaking scenery as craggy coastlines, golden beaches, lush rainforests, snow-capped mountains, bubbling volcanic pools, rivers jumping with rainbow trout, and glacier-fed lakes compete for attention; a landscape beautifully showcased in the Lord of the Rings trilogy.
Pair this with a thriving indigenous Maori culture, bustling cosmopolitan cities, traditional towns and friendly people, and you have an outstanding and unusual combination. New Zealand is a world leader in eco tourism, and has developed into one of the cleanest and greenest countries to visit.
Much of the plant and animal life is varied and unique, including the reclusive kiwi, fur seals, yellow-eyed penguins, Hooker`s sea lions, dolphins and whales. Add world-renowned wines, wonderful cuisine, strolls on moody beaches, tramping through national parks and alpine tracks, bungee jumping, zorbing, caving and white-water rafting, and you have a wealth of thrilling experiences.

New Zealand Culture And History

Culture and History

New Zealand, first settled by Polynesians (The Maori) in the 13th century, has a long history of conflict in total contrast to its current laid-back vibe. The arrival of European explorer Abel Tasman in the late-18th century caused violent struggles with the native Maori off the coast of New Zealand. The next European to arrive was Captain James Cook, who charted the country`s coastline more than 100 years later, and was followed by European settlers and traders that arrived in search of a new life and greater wealth.
In 1840 the Treaty of Waitangi, a land ownership agreement between the British and the Maori was signed, transferring New Zealand to the British crown. New Zealand became self-governing in 1852 and gained the status as a Dominion of the British Empire in 1907, granting it independence. Queen Elizabeth II remains the head of state, although the monarch has no active role in running the country.

New Zealand Culture And History

Social Conventions

Should a visitor be invited to a formal Maori occasion, the hongi (pressing of noses) is common. Casual dress is widely acceptable. New Zealanders are generally very relaxed and hospitable. Stiff formality is rarely appreciated and, after introductions, first names are generally used. Smoking is restricted where indicated; it is banned in pubs and restaurants as well as on public transport or in public buildings.

UK Overview

UK Overview

Brash and forward, the people of the north England are among the friendliest, and the wild and windswept Northumberland coast, Peak District and Lake District are brooding and beautiful. But it is the highlands of Scotland where true British wilderness remains - harsh, snow capped and often inaccessible. Art-drenched Edinburgh is a stunning city to explore, and the larger islands of the Hebrides attract walkers and whiskey lovers.
Enchanting Wales features energetic Cardiff and industrial Swansea to the south, and jagged peaks of the Snowdon Massif to the north. Across the water, stylish Belfast is a forward thinking and exciting city, and Northern Ireland`s countryside is every bit as intoxicating as the UK`s mainland.
Few places cram in as much scenery, history and culture as the United Kingdom. England`s southwest is dominated by a rugged shoreline and ancient history, while the UK`s sprawling and ethnically diverse capital London sits amid the rolling hills of the cosmopolitan southeast.

UK Culture and History

Culture and History

The culture of the United Kingdom refers to the patterns of human activity and symbolism associated with the United Kingdom and its people. It is informed by the UK`s history as a developed island country, being a major power, and, its composition of four countries-England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales-each of which have preserved and distinct customs, cultures and symbolism.
As a result of the history of the formation of the United Kingdom, the cultures of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are diverse and have varying degrees of overlap and distinctiveness.

UK Society

Social Conventions

The monarchy, though now only symbolic politically, is a powerful and often subconscious unifying force. Members of the Royal Family are the subject of unceasing fascination, with their every move avidly followed and reported by the popular press, both in the UK and abroad.
Handshaking is customary when introduced to someone for the first time. One kiss on the cheek is gaining popularity for close friends. Normal social courtesies should be observed when visiting someone`s home and a small present such as flowers or chocolates is appreciated. It is polite to wait until everyone has been served before eating.

USA Overview

USA Overview

Study Abroad in United States and explore the various career opportunities. and covering an incredibly varied terrain. For five centuries, since the discoveries of Christopher Columbus, people from every corner of the globe have come here in search of `the American Dream`.
Nothing can prepare you for your first glimpse of Manhattan`s unforgettable skyline, your first ride in a yellow cab, the ubiquitous hamburger joints, yawning expanses of prairie, the sweet strains of New Orleans jazz, or the neon-lit excesses of Las Vegas. From its vast plains, snow-covered mountains, deep forests and strange rock formations, to soaring skyscrapers and a thunderous cultural scene, the USA is a collage of extremes.

USA Culture and History

Culture and History

American culture encompasses traditions, ideals, customs, beliefs, values, arts, folklore and innovations developed both domestically and imported via colonization and immigration from the British Isles. Prevalent ideas and ideals which evolved domestically such as national holidays, uniquely American sports, military tradition, and innovations in the arts and entertainment give a strong sense of national pride among the population as a whole.
It includes both conservative and liberal elements, military and scientific competitiveness, political structures, risk taking and free expression, materialist and moral elements. Many cultural elements, especially popular culture have been exported across the globe through modern mass media where American culture is sometimes resented.

USA Society

Social Conventions

Americans are renowned for their openness and friendliness to visitors. The wide variety of national origins and the USA`s relatively short history has resulted in numerous cultural and traditional customs living alongside each other. In large cities, people of the same ethnic background often live within defined communities.
Shaking hands is the usual form of greeting. A relaxed and informal atmosphere is usually the norm. As long as the fundamental rules of courtesy are observed, there need be no fear of offending anyone of any background. Gifts are appreciated if one is invited to a private home.
As a rule, dress is casual. High-end restaurants, hotels and clubs may require more formal attire. Smoking is increasingly unpopular in the US; it is essential to ask permission before lighting up. Smoking is not allowed on city transport and restricted or forbidden in public buildings in most states. There will be a posted notice where no smoking is requested.

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