We are in the 21st century yet people believe that Down Under is a land of kangaroos, poisonous snakes, and giant spiders but that is not entirely true. Where else can you visit a new beach, every day for an entire year? Most of Australia’s exotic flora and fauna cannot be found anywhere in the world. But that’s not all, Australia is the third choice of the international students in the world for their higher education, way ahead of many other developed nations in the world.
It is always challenging to select a University especially when you are coming from overseas and in a new land, embarking a new journey. Here, at Englishfirm we made it a little easier for students and gave a few perspectives while selecting a University in land down under. Australia is known for its high education standard and good infrastructure but there are few things to consider when planning to study in Australia. Also, it is very important to keep your end goal in mind while selecting courses and educational institutes as the courses that you want to study will also play a big role while selecting a university.
Top Australian University List
Australia mainland is the world’s largest island which is a continent in itself. Australia is divided into six different states and two territories. Australia is made up of the Australian Capital Territory, New South Wales, Northern Territory, Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania, Victoria and Western Australia. Australia also have some external territories under that includes Ashmore and Cartier Islands, Christmas Island, the Cocos (or Keeling) Islands, the Jervis Bay Territory, the Coral Sea Islands, Heard and McDonald Islands, Norfolk Island and the Australian Antarctic Territory (covering 42 per cent of the Antarctic continent) as external territories.
Top Universities of Australia that are present in different states are commonly known as G8 (Group of eight) and come under top 100 World Ranking. These universities are as following:
Top 6 Reasons why students prefer to study in Australia
|All English Testing System Accepted
||Australian universities accept IELTS, PTE, and TOEFL. Unlike Canada where only IELTS is accepted in some universities while the U.S.A requires English test as well as GRE making it difficult to get in. For Language training please check , PTE classes
Career options are plenty in Australia and it welcomes skilled workers with open arms. There are tons of easy ways to get Australian Permanent Residency in coming years.
|Vast Career Options
||That time of the year when you are unsure about the future or confused, to say the least! But don’t worry. All is not lost. Australian Universities have a plethora of programs ranging from, cookery to nursing, art to music, health service to IT computing, linguistic to management, engineering to business, economics to science for you to choose from.
|Globally Recognized Degree
Australia has top 8 universities among top 100 universities worldwide. Most of its universities have state of the art facilities.
||For many of us, our major concern is expenses. Studying in Australia is affordable as Australia is one of the countries that allows students to work part time while studying. Also, Melbourne was declared as the most liveable city for the sixth time in a row with other Australian cities not far behind. And there is a bonus temporary residency you can apply for after your studies.
||Climate in Australia is overall pleasant throughout the year. In comparison to other countries like Canada which are snow covered for most of the year, Australia experiences pleasant weather conditions with numerous beaches and greenery all around. On top of that Australia’s food products are of top quality with best and organic ingredients.
Spending money for higher studies in Australia – Good/Bad Investment ?
As Australia being such a large country mainly depends on immigration for work which entails that there are huge opportunities of work for people dedicated to finding work. Having said that, Australian education is also considered one of the most expensive ones in the world. Students need to show their complete fee plan while applying for a VISA and on top of that one needs $20,000 as living expenses in their bank account. That means although getting accepted by university does not guarantee Student Visa and one needs to be financially strong in order to fulfil Australian VISA requirements
|Work part time
||One of the biggest advantages of studying in Australia is that the Australian government allows it’s students to work part time while studying. On an average, a student can work up to 20 hours a week. This will give them ~1600 AUD per month (Hourly ~20 AUD, highest working minimum wages in the world). If the students can share accomodation and food , which are the main expenses, they can roughly save ~500-1000 AUD. So even in the worst case scenario, they can earn a decent amount and does not need to depend on family for their living in Australia. So by the time you graduate, you could reduce your student loan by some percentage.
|Opportunities after graduation
||Some of the majors that are in huge demand in Australia and can easily secure good jobs are IT, Engineering, Health, Food industry and Trade sector. These are in critical shortage in Australia and can secure jobs with firms helping them to get their permanent residency without much hassle.
|Permanent Residency Opportunities
||As the world knows that Australia was on a strict lockdown throughout the covid period with its international border being closed completely in 2020 and 2021 which meant critical shortage of workers. This news is a boon for people applying for permanent residency and especially for aspirants who are already present in Australia. Recently the Australian government opened up many seats for aspirants and New South Wales increased the priority sector from 49 to 99. Many states like New South Wales have been inviting students to apply for regional VISA 491 in which people working in critical sectors have gotten invitations for as low as 70 points. Not only this but also people are getting invitations for 190 (State sponsored VISA) as well. This all shows that in the upcoming time Australia is going to have an upsurge in invitation due to shortage in inflow of immigration for the last two years
Easy methods to get PR
The best way to get maximum points for your permanent residency is to go for PTE exams. It is the easiest way to secure 20 points in your application and which increases your chance many fold to get an invitation. English Firm can help you with guided and customised courses so that you can get your desired result in the first attempt itself. Also, one can prepare for NAATI CCL exam as it guarantees 5 extra points in your application and at present scenario it is boon for students. Earlier people living in Australia could have only applied for NAATi exam, however, as NAATO has been converted to online for people from any part of the world to apply. Hence, this is the right time if you dream of living in Australia to go for the NAATI exam, otherwise one needs to be physically present in Australia to apply for it. NAATi CCL exam can be done in different languages and Englishfirm help you with one-on-one coaching for that. One can refer previous English Firm articles on PTE and NAATi to clarify their doubts.
4 major things to consider while selecting Australian University
||Australian universities differ in prices according to their ranking and location. Universities in cities are usually costlier in comparison to universities in regional areas. Also, the cost changes based on university, college or TAFE institutes that provide diplomas. Another thing one needs to consider while selecting a university is Student VISA because the Australian government provides student VISA easily if one is applying for university in comparison to TAFE colleges.
|Life at Uni
Australian uni life is pretty much the same if you go for any university. You will be given numerous assignments and exams. There are various restaurants and bars inside the universities with festivals mostly taking place every now and then. Most Australian Universities have their own accommodation where you can meet people from different cultures and countries. However, uni accommodation is usually expensive in comparison to renting a place on your own. Also, classes are according to the one you select. You can always make your own time table, attendance is not compulsory unless it is a practical class. One of the best things about Australian Universities are the Uni holidays which you get between every semester and you have ample of time to enjoy life apart from studying for University only. It is the best mix of work and play.
|Life in Australia
||Australia has the most beautiful and pristine beaches at every corner. Nature is most calming and soothing. You can find numerous themed restaurants and there are always places to go during weekends. Melbourne and Sydney are constantly ranked as most liveable cities making life in Australia full of adventures and excitement. Different states in Australia are known for different things like Tasmania is known for its sunsets and Queensland for its pristine beaches. Bondi beach is one of the most famous beaches in the world located in Sydney.
Always select a course that you can justify in your Statement of Purpose while applying for Student VISA because if you are unable to do so the chances of the Australian government rejecting your application increases. Also, make sure your course is listed in CRICOS and is a part of the SOL list. Always attempt to apply for a 2 years course so that you can get another 2 years VISA after graduation. Doing your course in regional areas gives you an extra 5 points and an extra 1 year of VISA after graduation. So, never blindly opt for cities as doing the same course in a regional area might be better suited for you in future.
3 mistakes to avoid while selecting Australian Universities
|Choose Courses not places
||While selecting any university to study, avoid selecting the ones that you think have more fun places around because everything in Australia is quite far so one can reach different places throughout. Try to go to universities that offer the course that you are interested in
|Avoid courses/skills that offers less PR opportunities
||Top courses in Australia to get guaranteed permanent residency are your Civil Engineering, Healthcare and IT sectors. Also, always check if the course that you want to study is in the SOL list and always match the course code with CRICOS. If your course is not on CRICOS list you won’t be able to get guaranteed 2 years Graduate VISA after your study.
|Avoid opting for courses that are < 2 years duration
||It is important if you plan to apply for permanent residency, always opt for 2 years University courses as then only you will be able to get your graduate VISA, if you got for 1 or 1.5 years university courses then you won’t be able to stay back another 2 years in Australia on Graduate VISA.
Subscribe Englishfirm Training
PTE Listening – Select Missing Words
Out of the four sections of the PTE test, the Listening section has the highest number of question types. There are a total of eight question types in this section. We are going to discuss Select Missing Words in this article.
What to expect from this question type?
Here you would be listening to a short paragraph, and you would be given 4 options to select your answer from. An audio would be played, however, the last word, or a few words would be beeped out. You have to listen to the audio carefully and select the appropriate response to complete the sentence from the given options.
You would be getting 2 to 3 questions of this type in your exam. You will be getting 1 point for every correct response. In total, this task contributes around 1.3 points maximum out of 90 for your Listening section. This is one of the low priority tasks in the test for this section, although make sure that you do not skip this task. Learn PTE with Nimisha
How to perform this task?
Before the audio for this task starts, skim through the options once. Once the audio starts, start listening to it carefully. Try to understand the grammar, the tense of the passage, the repeated words, and the context. It is absolutely crucial to understand the context in this case carefully. Do not get distracted while listening to the audio, specially, the last sentence, as the beep will be in the last sentence. Make sure you focus only on the audio when it is played. As soon as you hear the beep, you can select the option that makes the most sense and complete the sentence that you just heard.
You must also keep in mind that the listening section has 2 sub-parts. Part 1 is Summarise Spoken Text and Part 2 includes the other 7 tasks. The listening section Part 2 has a total timer, which means that you have to manage your own time in this part so that you would be able to solve all the questions of the Listening section on time. Also remember, Write from Dictation is the most important question type for your Listening and Writing scores, so, you must have at least 6 to 8 minutes to solve this question type. Overall, you would get 22 to 28 minutes to solve the entire listening section (excluding Summarise Spoken Text, which you can solve in 10 minutes for each question). Remember, there is no rollover time from Summarise Spoken Text to the rest of the Listening section. So, use your time wisely here.
For Select Missing Words, you can spend around 5 to 10 seconds after the audio to solve the question, that is, to select the correct response. Another point to remember is, you cannot press NEXT while the audio is going on, so make use of the time that you have by listening to the audio carefully. As this question type is a low priority task, make sure you do not spend a lot of time here.
Stay calm, relax and concentrate – is the key to scoring better in this task. Join our Parramatta coaching for PTE classes today.
PTE Personal Introduction
Before the actual PTE exam starts, there is a section wherein you are given the opportunity to introduce yourself in a few seconds, this is known as the Personal Introduction section.
This section is actually a part of the speaking section, it comes just before the evaluated speaking module. This section is a non-evaluated section. Although it is a very important part of the exam. “Why?” You may ask. There are a few advantages of the PTE personal introduction.
Let’s discuss this in detail:
What test-takers tend to do most of the times is they tend to skip this section as it is anyway not evaluated, however, it is crucial for us to attempt this task. Mainly, it can help Boost Confidence! When you know that a task is not going to be evaluated, you naturally tend to not stress on that task. As a result, you would perform extremely well here in this part. You would not hesitate, your voice would be normal – moderate speed and volume, and most importantly, you would be calm and composed. These are all the traits that you require to score well in your speaking section.
As you must be well aware, that Speaking section can get a little tricky or may make us feel anxious, it is of utmost importance for us to score well in the Speaking section, as it contributes not only to the Speaking section itself, but also in the Reading and Listening sections. In fact, it includes one of the most important questions of these sections.
By performing the PTE Personal Introduction well, with confidence, then it can give you a great head start for the exam and helps you keep motivated. It is proven that the candidates who perform well in the personal introduction section, usually feel better and hence perform well in the entire exam.
How does this task look?
The Personal Introduction task runs for 30 seconds (Relatively small and goes away quickly!). There would be a progress bar that will help you keep track of the time and help you understand how long you can speak for.
What can you include in this section?
- Name: you can start the introduction like any normal introduction that you may give. Start by stating your Full Name.
- Next, you can move on to stating how long have you been staying in Australia?
- What are you currently doing? – That is, you can say where you have been studying or working at the moment.
- Lastly, the reason why you are attempting the exam. You can say for studying or for Permanent Residency, etc.
While introducing yourself, make sure you do not hesitate and do not take unnecessary pauses, as it will make you seem hesitant, and it would appear that you are not confident enough. Sit upright and speak with natural pauses.
So, stay calm, prepare well and nail you test with a great start! Learn PTE with Nimisha
Pronunciation in PTE
As you all may know that Speaking section is the most important section in the PTE test, as it can give you points in three sections in total, Speaking, Reading as well as Listening. Also, you cannot get Speaking scores from any other section. Hence, it is very critical for us to perform well in the Speaking section.
Most of you are dreaded by the Speaking section (I know! We have all been there!). But do not panic, in this article we will discuss how to improve your score in the Speaking section, specially through Pronunciation.
The Speaking section is evaluated mainly by three parameters:
Please check our PTE Enabling Skills for more information.
For each question and question type that you solve here, you get points divided into these three categories. So, let’s look into a few pointers that will help you improve your pronunciation score, which would help you crack that 90 in you Speaking module.
Regardless of the question type, the way that you speak in the entire Speaking section must be uniform. You do not require to have an accent or mimic the regular speakers of the language. It is simply scored by determining if your speech can be easily understood by the native English speakers.
Low pronunciation score is a contributor to low Speaking scores, so let’s have a look at what we can do to improve our Pronunciation scores in speaking.
Enunciation: Rule of the thumb would be enunciating the words. This is probably the most important aspect of pronunciation, as murmuring or not opening the mouth which speaking would result in the microphone not catching your voice properly. So, remember to practice speaking with clarity.
Phonetic Sounds: Try to get the pronunciation of the words itself correct. Make sure you focus on the each and every sound in the word, be it the consonant or vowel. Do not replace your phonetic sounds, at it may change the entire word, and you may lose your score, specially, in Read Aloud. To improve your Phonetics, you can look into the 44 phonetic sounds of English. All you got to do is listen to each sound individually and mimic the sounds. You may find that you cannot pronounce some of the phonetics, all you got to do is make a list of such sounds. Keep practicing the sounds that you have made a note of daily to improve the sounds. Once you have improved the phonetic sounds, your pronunciation score would definitely boost up.
Voice Pitch: A very high-pitched voice has proven to not be caught be the microphone in the PTE test. If you are someone who has a high-pitched voice, you would have to practice the normal pitch. We have tested when a person speaks in a high pitch, their clarity deteriorates and the microphone tends to catch a noise, due to which, pronunciation scores are depreciated. So, practice speaking in a normal or a slightly low pitch.
Microphone Positioning: Always ensure that you check the microphone positioning, as ignoring that may lead your voice not being caught at all, or your breath might be caught in it as well. Also, once you have fixed the position of the microphone, do not keep touching it as it created a noise while doing so.
Remember, pronunciation can’t be improved in a day, so keep practicing daily and don’t give up!!
Learn How to score 90 in PTE?
How to score 90 in PTE?
PTE seems to be very dreadful at the first glance. Considering that its format is quite the opposite of IELTS. In reality, PTE is much easier than IELTS in terms of scoring. Both of them test your English abilities, but PTE has a lenient scoring algorithm. It’s all about knowing the question types, time allocation and the marks distribution to crack this test.
Let’s have a look at the basics!
PTE consists of 4 sections, and 20 question types in total. Each question has dedicated times and marks allocated to it. Not all questions are of the same weightage. Some of the questions are important, while some are of low priority. Here is what your test questions would look like:
Read Aloud PTE
PTE Repeat Sentence
Describe Image PTE
Retell lecture Tips
Answer Short Question
Summarize Written Text
PTE Fill in the blanks
PTE Online Coaching
PTE Reorder Paragraph
PTE Fill in the blanks
PTE Marks Distribution
Summarise Spoken Text
PTE Fill in the blanks
Common tips that can be followed for Listening Exercises
PTE Marks Distribution
Select missing word Tips
Highlight incorrect words PTE
PTE Write From Dictation
It may look complicated at first, but it is comparatively simple once you have understood the algorithm. In PTE, unlike IELTS, from some questions, you can get points in 2 sections. For instance, when you perform Write from Dictation, you get points for Listening as you listen to the sentence, but you get points for Writing as well, as you have to write the sentence that you listen. So please make note of all question types that give you points in two sections.
Next, keep an eye on the timer. This is a time-based test, so make sure you know how much time is allocated for each question type and keep an eye on the timer so that you know that you are on track.
Let’s see section wise how you can improve your skills and hit that 90s mark.
This can be a tricky section. You do not need to speak like a native speaker or have some sort of accent to get full points here. There are three parameters on which speaking is tested, which are Oral Fluency, Pronunciation and Content. Try to maintain moderate speed, speak clearly and focus on what you speak. Clarity is the key, the microphones in the test are extremely sensitive so make sure you don’t shout or speak to softly. Stay calm and consider the time.
Both the question types in this section are time based, meaning they have a fixed timer. Summarise Written Text gives you 10 minutes and Write Essay gives you 20 minutes per question. A few tips to get the perfect score here is check your spellings, always proofread your work. Divide your time in such a way that you have at least 2 minutes at the end of each question here to proofread your work. Always keep an eye on the timer, this way you won’t panic, and you will be prepared. Always plan before you start writing, do not start typing straight away.
Two of the most important questions here are both Fill in the Blanks questions. These are a little complex. You need to understand the basics of English Grammar and apply it while solving. To improve your basics I Grammar, you can start reading news articles or books or anything that has academic English. Apart from that, time management is another thing that would help you score better, as in the Reading section you get a total timer, and you have to manage your time so that you can solve all the questions.
Listening to podcasts or listening to news for improving your listening skills. Watch English series with subtitles for a start, that can help you understand different accents and speeches. Remember, in the test you can get a variety of different accents, so diversify your practice. The most important question type here is Write from Dictation, make sure you keep practicing this question type as much as possible daily and strive perfection in this question.
Even though PTE is not a particularly user-friendly test, considering it is completely computer based, scoring 90s on it is achievable with enough preparation and in-depth knowledge of the PTE algorithm and scoring criteria.
Learn PTE with Nimisha