Learn Australian English in this Aussie English Facebook Live Class where I answer all your English questions including what’s the difference between listen vs hear, and awkward, odd, strange, and weird.
Classes every Tuesday at 7pm (GMT+11hrs) on Facebook here.
Enjoying Aussie English?
Support AE on Patreon today so I can bring you even better content!
Learn Australian English even faster when you enroll in The Aussie English Classroom!
Each course is a comprehensive English lesson covering these areas:
Success! Now check your email to confirm your subscription.
About the AuthorI learn languages, teach Australian English, and love all things science and nature!
You Might also like
By pete — 1 year ago
AE 408 – Interview: Crocs, Muppet Pollies, & the Legend of Wildman with Damian Duffy
G’day, guys, how’s it going?
Welcome to this episode of Aussie English. This is another interview episode, and today I have the pleasure of interviewing Damien Duffy, a.k.a. Wildman.
But before we get into that, guys, welcome to The Aussie English Podcast the number one podcast for anyone and everyone wanting to learn Australian English, whether you want to understand how we speak, the accent, the slang that we use, or whether you want to sound like an Australian when you speak, The Aussie English Podcast is for you. And The Aussie English Podcast is brought to you by The Aussie English Classroom. So, that is my product. That is the online learning environment where you guys can get courses that go with these lessons. They go with the interview lessons. They go with the expression episode lessons that are on the podcast. The whole point of this online classroom is to help you study and learn Australian English even faster.
Anyway guys, today, I had the pleasure of chatting with my mate Wildman, with Damien. He was up north at the time in Darwin doing a whole bunch of stuff up there running cruises, feeding crocs. We talk a little bit about that. We talk about crocodiles. We talk about muppet politicians. Someone who is “a muppet” is an idiot. So, we’ll use that in Australia to refer to people we don’t like. It’s kind of a polite way of saying that someone’s an idiot. He’s a muppet. So, we talk about pollies, politicians, who are total muppets, and then we also talk about how Wildman got the name ‘Wildman’ and got started with his career running around Australia, photographing animals, and doing all sorts of larrikin-esque kind of activities.
Anyway, Wildman’s an absolute champ, guys. I have broken down one of his videos previously. So, you may have seen him on YouTube. If you want to check that out, just search “Wildman Aussie English”, and you’ll see me break down his accent. He has a very very thick Australian accent. It’s incredibly okkar. It’s actually one of my favourite Australian accents, and I have a little bit of accent envy. So, make sure if you have trouble understanding anything that he says, and anything I say, to jump online and download the transcript so you can read everything that we’re saying whilst you listen.
Anyway guys, without any further ado, let’s get into today’s episode. Let’s go and chat with Wildman.
So, I mean, welcome to this episode of Aussie English, man. Thank you for joining me. Thank you for, as well, letting me do that video originally on your content. That was amazing and everyone listening to it was…. it was right up there Ali. They were loving it, dude.
Yeah, no dramas, mate! Too easy.
So, I’ve got a bunch of questions here for you, Damien. I mean, just a start: “Wild Man”. How did that get started? How did you… Tell us a bit about yourself, introduce yourself, and how did it all get started?
The Wildman got started just because I’m a bit of a loose unit and I kind of get it in a while. So, the name kind of stuck the Wild Man. I start off just with the photography, because I do the wildlife photography thing, and I needed a good name for it, and I thought, Wildman Photography’s a pretty good name. And gradually, I progressed from there and thought to myself the adventures that I go on to get the photos that I get are interesting in themselves and I’m going out to all these pristine, amazing places, beautiful landscapes. Why not start doing videos? And they took on a life of their own. So, yeah, that’s hopefully kicking off.
So, when did that start? How long have you been doing the photography side of things?
Think I’ve been doing photography for about…Actually, decent photography, for maybe about two and three years. I bought a camera about four years ago and I just taught meself how to use it. Got a few hints and tips off some other people, and just went from there. And then, I’ve managed to get myself to where I am now. There is always learning, there’s always something else to learn, but having a lot of fun with, mate.
Yeah. And what are the best experiences been so far? What are the best shots that you’ve caught or the best adventures you’ve been on? Or are they all good?
To be honest, they’re all good, mate! But going into the National Park, for example, Litchfield National Park’s always phenomenal. I didn’t… I used me GoPro the other night to swim in a freshwater crocodile at night time and filmed it underwater with an underwater torch and my GoPro. So, that was amazing. But, basically anything, mate. Whenever you are you going out and finding wildlife, the experience in itself is invigorating and makes you really enthusiastic about what you’re doing, because you don’t just walk outside and you got like black neck stalks, and crocodiles, and kangaroos, and snakes, and they’re not just sitting at the front waiting for you. You gotta go and look for ’em. So, it’s all part of the adventure, and when you find something that’s really, really exciting, then you can take photos and show other people what you saw, and that’s exciting as well.
And so, have you always lived up north in Australia? Did you grow up in Queensland? Whereabouts did it all begin for you?
Oh, mate, if I go by the legend, I fell out of the dingo’s arse in the bush somewhere. But… No, to be honest, mate, I was born in western Sydney.
Yeah, no judgment. I’m from Melbourne, no judgment, no judgement.
A Mexican! I’ve got relies down in Melbourne, in Mornington, Mount Martha, I’ve got a few mates in Frankston. Franga, Frankghanistan, they’re rough units. But yeah, I’ve lived in and around Sydney, Parramatta, Rosehill, Mt Druitt, all the rough areas, you know. I was pretty young then, and then I moved away to the Central Coast, around Lake Macquarie, a couple of hours there in Newcastle. I think I’ve been to nine different schools, you know, like I’ve lived there in the bush in New South Wales. I’ve been near the city. I’ve lived… I moved… I went to Noosa. Lived there for a couple of years, went back to the other side of the Blue Mountains in a little one-horse-town called Portland that snowed there, it’s horrible. And then I ended up back in Brisbane and I was there for, like, a couple of years, and then I went and joined the army, ended up back in Sydney doing paratrooper, then I went back to Brisbane, and I was there for seven years, and then I moved to North Queensland, and I was there for, maybe, for four, four and a half years, and then… and now I’m in the Northern Territory, and I’ve finally found a place where I’m meant to be. I thought it was North Queensland, mate, but since I moved here… North Queensland will always have a place in my heart, but Northern Territory, mate, is just next level, phenomenal place.
You were at The Daintree Rainforest, right?
And, so, how do the two compare, then? Obviously, just saying Darwin’s a lot better, is it, or…?
Yeah, it’s better for me, because it’s just more loose, mate. Like everything is so relaxed and chilled out here. My favourite pub is the Humpty Doo. I don’t have to wear shoes when I go in there. People occasionally bring in snakes or crocodiles or ride a water buffalo in, like, it’s loose! And that’s what I love. It’s the last wild frontier in this country, unless you count suburbs like Campbelltown or whatever, you know. But, that’s too loose. That’s even too much for me. But it is just… it is the final wild frontier as far as wildlife goes, even at the end of the dry season, there is still animals everywhere.
It blows my mind. Like, my camera has had one hell of a workout. Thanks goodness Nikon make tough cameras, but in the… it’s a completely different environment. Over in North Queensland, it’s a tropical rainforest, and you do have pristine, beautiful waterfalls, and you’ve got your rainforest snakes and all your reptiles and all that sort of jazz, and of course you got some crocodiles there, small density, but some.
Yeah. The salties as well as the freshies?
Yeah, there’s freshies that live out on the tablelands out towards Chillagoe if you go further inland, but you’ve got a few salties along the coast. If you ask Bob Katter how many salties there are, they’re probably about 10 million and they’re waiting at your front door to mug you when you go to get up for work the morning.
10 million too many.
Yeah mate. But, there’s bugger all, man, there’s bugger all up there. But in the Territory there’s heaps more and that makes me happy because I like seeing ’em. And of course, I work with ’em now, but you can’t compare. Two completely different environments. They’re both as tropical as all buggery with the temperature.
But, it gets hotter in the Territory, the wet season is much bigger in the Territory, but the sheer amount of wildlife here is just… ’cause their big vast wetlands, mate. And the biodiversity here rivals the biodiversity of places like the Amazon, you know?.
Heartbeat’s per square meter is just still of tap, so…
What’s the population of Darwin, again? It’s like tiny, isn’t? Compared, to say, Sydney.
Oh yeah. But even Cairns it’s small compared to Sydney, but Darwin is still… it’s barely even a city. I think it barely counts as a city. So, and it’s small. There’s like one main street in town. I went into town the other day and it was like… it was like just a, you know, a rural town. It wasn’t… you know, it doesn’t have all the skyscrapers and all that, you know, what you see. It’s not a very touristy place. You’ve got tourist shops and whatever that sell souvenirs all that crap, but of course, you do. It is a tourist destination, but it’s not… you don’t go there and think, “oh it’s a tourist town”. Like, you go to Port Douglas and you’re like, ” this is very touristy”, but everything’s bloody expensive. But you go to Darwin, and it’s just like a place in Australia where people live that just happens to be awesome.
And so, for, I mean, the listeners, a lot of them are going to be people coming from overseas into Australia, and I’m sure all they will have seen Steve Irwin docos and all those, you know, TV shows showing the 10 top deadliest Australian animals, do they… Should they expect to come to places like Northern Queensland and Darwin, get out of the car and be, like, killed by something instantly? Is that a realistic expectation?
You got more chance of getting killed by a local, mate, than by the animals. But… So, but no like, in the middle of the city, people… Like, I’ve told people that I used to ride a kangaroo to work, to school*, not to work, to school, sorry, when I was a kid. They were like “oh really?”, you’re like… no.
But, they’ll believe anything if you tell them. I once convinced a group of American biology students that Australia had bush monkeys, the Australian bush monkey in North Queensland.
No, no, they were proper the bush monkeys related to the slow Loris from Southeast Asia, and I gave this big evolutionary spiel. And we spent about 40 minutes in the rainforest trying to look the bush monkeys and, ah, then went back to America thinking that. But, as long as it is a convincing argument, you can tell them anything. But, they think that they’re going to get off the plane and had to dodge brown snakes in the airport.
And it is vastly different, and unfortunately, because of the amount of foot traffic from people, like, cars, and etc., Even in some of the national parks, like, you’ve got to really go looking for the wildlife.
So, what’s the best way to do that too and the safest way? If these people want to come to Australia and see these kinds of animals in the wild, what’s the best way to do it, and what’s the safest way to do it, and is there any danger when they do do it if they do it on their own as well?
If you do it on your own, unless you know what you’re doing, stay in the car. You can go night spotting for reptiles and cruise along some of the rural roads and you will see snakes. You put enough time in, you’re guaranteed to see snakes in the early evening on the road, after the… within the first couple of hours after the sun’s gone down, because they’re getting that warmth off the road. So, and they’ve got to cross the road somewhere. There’s no snake crossing. But if they’re going to do that, by all means, and you can even hop out of your car and take a photo, but just do it from a distance. There’s no need to touch these animals or interact or antagonise them. You can take… and if you don’t want to get out of the car, don’t get out of the car. I mean, that’s the safest thing. You can spot it and go, “Hey, cool”, and wind your window down and take your photos, a snake’s not gonna on your window. But as far as any other animals, and snakes included, you can go on tours. They’ve got tours down at Corroboree Billabong. They’ve, of course, got the spectacular Jumping Crocodile Cruise that I work on. There’s plenty of different tours around here that will show you, not only the places, but they’ll point out animals, and these tour guides have been working here for years, some of them decades. So, they know where to spot everything, they know how to spot it. They’re good at what they do, and they can show you these animals in a safe environment, and it’ll still blow your mind.
And what’s it like, yeah, getting up close and personal with crocs? You recommend that as a good experience, I take it? Nothing like it?
You’re exactly right, mate. When I was working in North Queensland I was feeding four-meter crocodiles with nothing in front of me, hanging a bit of chicken in a wildlife park so that was phenomenal. But, and now, I’m working on the river with them. It’s totally different in the wild, because they… the captive crocodiles, although they still have all the wild instincts, they’re a captive animal, and they just go through the motions of the show, and whatnot, but when you’re out on the river, you’re not always interacting with them, a lot of the time you’re just observing their behaviours, and explaining their behaviours to other people, and we’re watching these crocodiles out in the river interact with each other, interact with the environment around them, including potential prey items. They go and fend for themselves. They don’t rely on us for food. They take advantage of it, but it’s not uncommon to see one of the crocodiles swim around with a pig or a wallaby.
And so, what are your thoughts currently with the numbers of them too? ‘Cause I know, since like, about the 70s they’ve come right back, right? They’ve shot up. But then, now we have politicians like Katter, who are saying we need to cull them again after they were all closely, you know, hunted to extinction. What are your thoughts on that?
Well, in the past I’m pretty sure I’ve made my thoughts on Katter quite clear. He just… he bases none of his argument on scientific fact. It’s all scare tactics and fear mongering, and using words like “infestation”, “plague proportions”. He’s trying to say this is a fatality every year, and… but then he goes off and goes, “Oh, Queensland is getting ripped to pieces and there’s no way safe to swim”. It’s an absolute load of rubbish, and there’s a enough… bunch of people that have jumped on the bandwagon saying, “Oh we can’t go swimming anywhere any more”. Now, I can tell you what a dozen places, off the top of your head, where you can swim safely, not to mention the lagoon and a flipping swimming pool, you know?
That’s it. Your own bath.
I guess, if you that hard up run a cool bath, but everyone’s got a swimming pool in North Queensland, you’ve got the manmade lagoon, but the numbers were up around half a million before the shooting era. Then, between the early 30s and 70s, they dropped in around 3000.
That’s right, they almost got exterminated, right?
Almost, almost right out of this country. So, at a rough estimate, and I say very rough estimate, numbers are between 250-350,000, that’s the experts reckon. But they’re currently doing a study to ascertain how many there actually are in the country now. But their numbers are far lower than half a million. So, you can still fit, let’s say 100… another 150,000 crocodiles in comfortably, before they have a natural density. And I’ve never understood this concept of humans wanting to manage the environment. These animals have been around for 100 million years in their current form doing just fine. Never were they overpopulated. Never were they in a plague proportion, or an infestation, or never were they damaging the environment around them.
On the contrary, they’re very, very important as an apex predator for their environment. So, for a human to go, “Nup! We should manage them”… well, no mate. They manage themselves. And as human beings, we need to manage ourselves. Yeah? I do agree with if there’s a crocodile in suburbia, going up a suburban creek, like, and there’s a three metre a crocodile there. It’s got to be removed, because that is a very immediate danger, and it’s gone right up into the middle where people live. But, if you’re living out in the bush on a cane farm or if you’re living in a rural area and there’s crocodiles around you need to be aware of that and manage yourself, and if you do so correctly, you’ll never ever get attacked by a crocodile.
It seems like.
So, basically, I think that’s a really long way of saying Bob Katter is muppet.
Enjoying Aussie English?
Support AE on Patreon today so I can bring you even better content!
I don’t know, it always seemed like one of these things, it’s kind of like a murder happens in Melbourne and it’s, “What’s the answer? Oh, we’ll just cull 10 percent of the population.” You’re like, that didn’t solve anything, like… But, so, what would an Australia look like without crocs?
It’d have a pretty serious impact on the ecosystem, and because they’re an apex predator, so, not only do they keep their own numbers in check to a degree. You’ve got crocodiles eating other crocodiles, which they do. Only one percent of crocodiles survive anyway from being an egg to adult. But crocodiles, young crocodiles, their eggs provide a food source for goannas and snakes. And then, once they’re born, they provide a food source for fish, snakes, other crocodiles, sharks, birds, then once they get older, it’s kind of more the bigger animals like your sharks that’ll get them. And then, once they’re a little bit bigger, crocodiles do potentially eat each other. They are opportunistic and cannibalistic. So, they’re a food source not only for themselves, but for the environment around them, but they keep other animals in check. They also are beneficial to, let’s say, fish numbers, because where crocodiles hang around, they hang around near fish nurseries and they’ll prey on animals that eat fish eggs. So, if you’ve got crocodiles preying on them, less of them are taking the amount of fish eggs, therefore, where you’ve got crocodiles, you’ve got more fish. Everything in nature has a balance, and it’s a delicate balance. If you remove a big puzzle piece out of there, everything else… it might not happen overnight, it might not happen in two months or six months or a year, but you will definitely notice a cascading effect and things will fall apart. They really will.
I think they showed that in Yosemite National Park, right? When they got rid of the wolves and the deer just went nuts and destroyed the land. Like, just trampled all the plants, the grasses weren’t growing properly, the rivers actually changed their courses as a result, and then once they reintroduce the wolves, they were like, “Oh, look, everything’s back in balance now”. And it’s kind of like… “Well, you need the guys at the top there”, right? Yeah.
I think it’s something similar that’s has happened with the dingoes, mate. Because where they took dingoes out of the area they had a lot of problems, and now they’ve reintroduced dingoes in some areas. They’re attacking the wild dogs that are attacking the cattle. The cattle are getting attacked a lot less, because the dingoes don’t see ’em was food. And a lot of the feral animals, like foxes and rabbits and cats, their numbers are dropping, because that’s what the dingoes are eating. That’s been established in this country for thousands of years. They’re natural apex predator here now, and they’re important, they’re part of the ecosystem. So, don’t take them out. Utilise them for what they’re here to do, to get rid of the actual feral animals.
So, how do they control, though, the mixing between the dingoes and the wild dogs? Because I would take it, if you’ve got too many wild dogs and they start interbreeding with the dingoes, you’re effectively just going to absorb that that population of dingoes, right?
To be honest with you, that is a very very difficult question, and I can’t base that on any scientific fact, because I don’t have enough information regarding the interbreeding of dingoes and wild dogs. But, yeah, that’s a problem for someone with a bit more expertise to figure out, I think. But, what they do at the moment is use 1080 poison, and 1080 poison isn’t just eaten by the animals that they wanna do over, it’s eaten by everything. And they die a very horrible death, and then, if anything else comes along and eats that carcass, they get poisoned too. So, I mean, like, personally, I think that crap should be banned. It’s used extensively in New Zealand, and there’re areas there where you can’t hear a bird tweet because of the extensive death that that poison has caused. They just go and spray everywhere. It’s ridiculous.
I know. Well, I was doing a Master’s Degree on the lace monitor down in Victoria here and they were eating them from time to time. We were just like how do we, you know, make these… I was studying them and I’m like, well you’re finding them dead, and you’re just like, “Why are we using this stuff for foxes when it’s just destroying everything and anything that can fit it in its mouth?”.
Yeah. If history has shown anything, mate, it’s when humans interfere, you have problems. Case in point, the bloody cane toad.
I was about to ask you about that.
If you ever wanted an example, mate.
So, how is that going in Darwin? I take it, you would have seen it in Queensland, the cane toad in Queensland, and it’s obviously well and truly made it to Darwin and beyond and it’s potentially threatening the Kimberley’s now, right? And whether it’s even gotten there and is going down to the Pilbara, what is it like in Darwin, now that you’ve moved from from Queensland, where they originated, over to Darwin? Is it just the same thing, exactly the same thing?
There’s toads, but there’s more in North Queensland. Just from looking around, you notice a lot more toads there. That said, there’s still a lot of toads here. There’s more than they should be, because they shouldn’t be any. But even on… just basing it on anything, there’s still a lot of toads, and they’ve had a big impact on freshwater crocodiles, on snakes, on goannas, all monitor species have really suffered from it. Birds are starting to figure it out, because they grab ’em, flip ’em over, and eat the gizzards out of them and everything, and leave the rest. So, birds are clueing on, but we can only hope that other animals do so too.
Yeah. So, is that happening slowly? Are there like goannas and the crocs and that becoming evasive of eating them, because the only ones that are left are the ones that didn’t need them to begin with, or… ?
Pretty sure they’re learning, mate. I think the term they used is “forced evolution”, because animals figure it out, you know, they adapt and overcome and they evolve. So, eventually, you know, like some animals when they’re born… crocodiles are a perfect example. When they’re born, they’re not taught anything, everything is ingrained into their mind biologically, they know how to hunt, stalk, and hide, and do buoyancy and everything. They already know when they’re born, which is phenomenal. Two days out of their egg, they just know what to do. But with other animals, I believe it’d work in a similar fashion, where, like, some animals just know that they shouldn’t eat something. So… and that’s just ingrained into them. So, let’s just hope that that’s the way it’s working with these animals. It is a slow process. Evolution doesn’t happen overnight, but I think when they’re faced with something is detrimental as cane toads, maybe it’ll speed the process up a bit.
And so, what do you think the future is going to be for cane toads in Australia, especially, across the northern… the top end there? Permanent residents now?
They’re here to stay, mate. They’re part of the ecosystem, and, hopefully, everything else around them will adapt, because to get rid of them is an impossible task. Good luck to the people who are faced with that task, who have been given the responsibility of trying to rid Australia from bloody cane toads. But, they haven’t got Buckley’s, mate.
As long as they don’t bring something in that’s worse.
Well, that’s always an option, isn’t it? That’s how we got into this mess in the first place. I was reading a study on the cane toad, apparently because of the insecticides and pesticides they use on the crops, and the cane toads are getting covered in it and they’re also eating all the insects that have died ingesting or getting covered in this poison, it has increased the toxicity of that bufo toxin in the poison glands. So, now, they’re even more toxic than before. Once again, directly due to human beings. When will we learn? The mind boggles, mate. It’s 2017 and our Government’s more worried about spending 120 million on a plebi-‘shite’, deciding whether people get the rights… the same rights as other people. I mean, has the world gone mad? Australia’s gone backwards.
Enjoying this episode?
Get the bonus content for this episode with quizzes and vocab breakdown!
That blew my mind the fact that the plebiscite, like, it’s something I don’t mind saying that I support gay marriage, but, at the same time, the equivalent of two thousand teachers’ jobs going for 122 million dollars could’ve employed two thousand teachers or, you know, we could probably save how many extinct species with that same amount of money? If you just threw it at that, instead of just a postal vote. Yeah, that was insane.
There are more things that we could’ve used that money for, than there are reasons why it shouldn’t have happened in the first place. I mean, there’s every reason why the plebiscite is absolute bullshit before you even start on the money side of things.
I mean, I’m only voting because, if I didn’t vote, dickheads would, and then, it would go through. So, you know, you’ve got to do it.
And then I can’t complain!
So, you know you gotta get involved, because, at the end of the day, mate, we’re all human beings, and fair enough, like, all these people are saying stupid rubbish about, “And then they’re going to marry dogs next or want to marry kids”. That’s… It was never a part of it. And all they doing is focussing, specifically, on the sex. They’re going, “oh same sex marriage means people of the same sex are having sex”. Piss that off! That’s got nothing to do with it.
It’s happening anyway, buddy! They are not waiting for permission.
That’s right. So, and they’re not doing it in the street in front of you. So, why don’t you just get over that, and put that aside, and just think yourself: “These are two human beings that love each other. Why don’t they have the right to get married just like anybody else?”. So, like, that to me, it’s as simple as that. And all these other bull crap fear mongering that’s going on, man, they’re just talking out of their arse trying to fire people up. But if this doesn’t go through all hope is lost, mate.
Oh, God, I tell you what. Far out. Well, I know you’ve got a busy, busy schedule ahead, You’re probably want to hit the sack. But, before we finish up, do you have any slang terms you’d suggest newcomers to Australia should learn? Any Aussie slang terms, you reckon that… I mean, you’ve being using… every single time I see any of your videos, you throw out about five or six, at least, in 30 seconds. It’s just infinite ammo for the podcast and for the YouTube channel. So, are there any you think, as soon as you get off the plane, guys, learn these these X number of slang terms, and you’ll fit right in?.
Oh, bloody hell, I don’t know, mate. “Mongrel” is a good one, a good word to use. It’s very diverse. You can go, “Oh you’re a bit of a mongrel” or “you mongrel”, you know, like, “I’m getting half a mongrel”, so… There’s a lot. Don’t… maybe don’t tell them what that one means. But I don’t know, mate, like.
“She’ll be apples” and “No dramas” are the ones I’ve heard you use.
“She’ll be apples, mate”, “She’ll be apples”, “No drama, cane farmer.” like, “Everything’s gonna be ‘right”, “No worries”. What else? You don’t have to swear at people. You can call them “a boofhead”, you know? If someone does something, you go, “Geez, you’re “a boofhead”. So, that’s good. And “A ning-nong”. “A ning-nong”, believe it or not, is highly offensive, ok?
“A ning-nong” is? Ah, ok!
It’s just a really nice way of saying, “You’re a dickhead”.
Oh, brilliant, dude. Thank you so much for your time, dude. I really, really appreciate it.
I appreciate you giving me a bell mate. This has been an absolute hoot.
Anytime, anytime. Thank you very much, sir.
Alright guys, so I hope you enjoy this interview with Damien Duffy, a.k.a., also known as, Wildman. Remember, that you can find Damien at Wildman Photography on Facebook. You can also find him at Wildman Adventures on Facebook. Both of these pages will be linked in the transcript below so you can go and check him out. He does some wonderful photography as well as some videos quite a lot chatting about different things that he comes across in Australia. So, it’s a great way to practice your listening comprehension of the stronger Australian accents if you check out his videos and his posts on his Facebook pages. Also check out his Instagram, guys, and that is @WildmanAdventures all one word. Okay? So, again, all of this will be linked below.
Massive, massive thanks to Damian Duffy, to Wildman, for coming on the show. I absolutely love chatting to this guy, and we will be in touch soon to chat about what he’s been up to this year. So anyway guys, I hope you guys enjoy the episode, and I’ll chat to you soon. See ya!
Follow Wildman here:
Struggling to understand and speak Australian English?
I’ve created the perfect solution.
Each course is a comprehensive English lesson covering these areas:
Success! Now check your email to confirm your subscription.Post Views: 2,335
By Admin — 11 months ago
AE 448 – Interview: A Step by Step Guide to Moving to Australia to Study English with Lorena Yeves
G’day, guys. Welcome to this episode of Aussie English. Man, do I have a killer episode for you guys today!
So, I don’t know if you’ve seen it in the previous episode, but I’ve chatted to Lorena from Go Study Australia in a previous interview, and this episode was a 338. So, make sure that you go back and check that out if you would like to hear more from Lorena after this interview.
But today, I’ve got her, she’s from Go Study Australia, which is a company that helps English students, students that have come to Australia to learn English. This company helps them find jobs, find accommodation, find really decent schools, even get flights from some countries here at a discount. So, they’re free service, guys. I really recommend Go Study Australia if you guys need any kind of advice or help, whether you’re already in Australia learn English or you’re thinking about coming here.
So, Go Study Australia, definitely recommend checking them out.
Anyway, as it’s probably obvious, today I chat with Lorena about, effectively, a step by step guide to moving to Australia to study English. So, I set this up by saying, you know, imagine I am a foreign English learner from, say, Spain. What do I need to do? What is the step by step process that I need to go through in order to get to Australia, in order to get established in Australia, to find somewhere to live, to find a school, to get a job, to get food, to find friends, to socialise?
So, anyway, it is a great interview. Massive thanks to Lorena for spending about an hour chatting to me on Skype. I really appreciated her time, and I know that you guys are going to get a lot out of this.
So, without any further ado, guys, here is Lorena from Go Study Australia.
G’day guys. Welcome to this episode of Aussie English I have Lorena back again. Hopefully you saw the first episode with Lorena and if you haven’t, it’s episode 338 and there’s also a video on YouTube called How to study English in Australia… Go study in Australia. So Lorena Welcome back. How are you going?
Good, thank you.
Let’s start up! what is Go Study Australia? And give us a bit of your back story again. How did you end up living in Australia, working for this awesome company that’s helping people with their studying of English in Australia?
Yea sure! So I’ve been working for Go Study for five years. I started in Madrid and we… When I say “we” I mean my partner and I got offered this opportunity to come to Australia two and a half years ago and to come to the Melbourne office. So I started in Madrid. What we did there was help and guide students through their journey coming towards Australia and here in Melbourne what we do is more of reception. So Go Study Australia is an agency, or student organisation, that does… That gives help to students and working holiday visa makers come to Australia. We primarily help in the sector of studying. So English courses or vocational training or bachelor degrees. And the other part of our role or job is to guide students who are in Australia. We do a lot of events, activities, sort of give them support while they are here in Melbourne. We also have offices in Sydney and in Perth and in Brisbane. So I sort of give the all round support while they’re here in Australia.
And so I guess… How do people find you? First off for you to just get that out of the way… Is it a a cheeky Google search or can I come and see you at your office?
So our doors are always open. They can obviously write to us through our website or through our social media. If they Google Go Study Australia They’ll definitely find us… In the offices that we have here in Australia we always have our doors open so students can just come in and we have a lot of walk-ins with people that just need a little bit of help either finding a job or finding the right course for them or even just a little bit of help in terms of finding their way around Australia. So they can always just come to our office whenever they want.
Brilliant! And is this just students or… I guess people in Australia from any other countries? it doesn’t matter where or are they from certain countries that you guys cater for specifically?
So our main “catering” let’s say is just for European… European countries and Latin American countries. We recently opened offices in Bogota and Medellin, in Colombia. So hopefully we’ll all start catering to that to that area as well.
I mean that’s a huge market. There’s a lot of Columbians going to Australia!
Especially in Melbourne. So hopefully we’ll do a good job of giving them a little bit of support. But we don’t… I mean anyone can really just come in. Although our experiences, just in terms of visas, are experience is more towards Latin America and Europe. Other countries have variations. The visas are a little bit different so we’re not . .. Might not be the best agency for them.
So, if we just imagine me now being someone who’s living in Spain, Italy, France, or South America and I’m really really keen to learn English abroad, Why would you suggest Australia?
so Australia has a lot of good things compared to other English speaking countries. One of the best things is the work opportunities. Other English speaking countries don’t have as many opportunities in terms of jobs. So for example student visas for U.S. don’t come with working rights . So that’s where you go, you study but you can’t work. Canada has… I’m not really sure but there’s a limit, so there’s… I think up to the first six months you can’t work and Astralia is one of the only countries that lets students actually be able to work part time while they’re doing their studies. Another great thing about Australia obviously is that because it’s so far away from everything else there’s not a lot of people from your own nationality…
For now, for now right?
And that’s good because when you’re looking for a school or a place to learn English you don’t want to find yourself in a situation where you’re surrounded by your own nationality and your own language. That’s the only way that you can really make forward with language.
So what would be the next step? So imagine that I am in Spain. I’ve decided, you know what, I want to learn English overseas, I want to come to Australia. What is the next step for me to then do, with regards to making that dream come true or happen?
So there’s various ways that people can come to Australia. The one that is the most use is the student visa. So we are… In order to come to Australia with a student visa, the first thing obviously that you have to take into consideration is grabbing a course. So that’s where any of our offices offshore/onshore will be able to give a little bit of insight to the student depending on what you want to study: English vocational courses, higher education. Once you’ve chosen the course the next steps are doing a little bit of paper work and which we’ll obviously lend a hand and to do the actual visa. Once the visa is granted then the student can come into Australia. So the first… That’s sort of the most used visa, which will be the student visa
And so obviously you can do this all on your own. , You can get online you can find the school, you can coordinate with them. Then you can go and organise your visa, but you guys kind of are the shortcut if you want to make life easier for yourself. They can get in touch with companies like Go study Australia in order to sort of get a little bit of hand-holding so that they don’t have to do it all on their own.
Exactly yeah. In terms of pricing all of the courses will cost exactly the same whether you do it by yourself or if you do it through us. That’s a misconception. A lot of times people think “oh if I do it with an agency that means that I’ll be charged something.” No, actually we don’t charge anything to a student. Whether you do it by yourself and you do it everything through directly to the school or through the agency you will everything will be the same fee.
So you’re paying a set fee to the school and then you guys, as Go Study Australia, any money you receive isn’t from the students themselves but from the schools or from other organizations, right?
Exactly. So everything will be exactly the same… Sorry…
No no no, you’re good.
Can you hear the student come in?
A little bit, a little bit, but it’s fine it doesn’t matter. I can hear you clearly.
So, in terms of… In terms of pricing everything is exactly the same with the added value, obviously, that when you go with an organisation like Go Study, you obviously get the added bonus… The school… Usually when you do things directly with the school, the school obviously help you with the paperwork of the enrolment in the school, but they won’t be able to give you any support with the visa. So that’s where a lot of people actually find themselves in a little bit of a pickle. They’ll go directly to school, do everything because they think that it’s going to be cheaper , do everything through the school, and the moment comes when they go in to their immigration stage, try to do the visa and they get a little bit stuck. So it’s always better rate to have that added support from an agency. Not only for the visa but also throughout the entire journey, so you will assure yourself of obviously getting support throughout the entire time, not just for the visa, but to the entire time that you’re in Australia.
Brilliant! Alright, so where were we? Alright, so there’s obviously no excuse not to be using an agency like Go study Australia because it’s free. And so what happens if if someone comes to you for help and they don’t actually end up getting through the process of getting a school and everything, is that still free or?
So yeah. All of our services are free. We’re never going to charge students. So legally speaking we are only able to lend a hand… A tool in terms of visa to students that come through . .. That do the schooling through us . When students have done the entire visa process or, another visa process, but the school process by themselves, and we’ve had the situation right. So somebody goes to school, does everything by themselves, and then comes to the office… More than likely we will be able to obviously lend a hand. We won’t be able to be as involved in the actual visa process as we would to one of our students, but we would be able to sort of push them in the right direction. In terms of all of the other services, our parties, our seminars, our information sessions: All of that is open to anyone whether they are students or not.
So that they can use that as a learning experience, whether or not though they’re actually going to use those. Brilliant, brilliant! And so what would be the next step then? you’re a young man living in Spain, you’ve decided you want to come to Australia, you’ve gone through Go Study, you’ve found an English school, I take it. How do you guys pair up someone with the right English school, and is there any advice there for how to find an English school that suits you or is any school okay?
So the short answer is No – not all schools are okay. So there’s a there’s a lot of different things that one needs to take into account. The first thing, obviously, is we try to pair the student with the right school, in terms of quality and in terms of price, and so different schools will have different pricing. There’s a certain line of quality that Go Study Australia does not go under so there’s… We try to work with schools that have passed our quality standard – Our seal, Let’s say. there’s a… Obviously in terms of… That’s why you ask an agency to guide you through the process. Because we have the experience of letting you know which are the schools that actually are vouched for and which not. The other thing that we do, apart from the quality, is obviously matching what the student is willing to pay for the experience with which the pricing of the school. So the first thing that we do is… So this would happen once we’re trying to find the correct schools for the student. We’ll ask, obviously, what kind of experience they want to do what their goal is in Australia. What are they looking for in the end. So . .. Oh, and how much time they want to be here for. Let’s say that they want to be for six months and study English, then we’ll offer… Usually what we do is we offer three or four different schools, depending on what they have been telling us that they’re looking for, and try to match the student with the school. There’s a lot of schools in Australia, so we’ll never offer you all of the schools, just because otherwise we’ll, you know… We’ll make the student go crazy, so we will try to find two or three schools that might match and go from there.
And so what’s the price range usually? What are the options? What is the lowest sort of threshold, and what does it offer versus the highest part of that threshold, as well?
So in terms of English, more or less the price that we’re talking about is between $200 and $270 per week. For $200 per week, usually are schools that are all for night classes and are usually less populated, let’s say. $250, $270 are usually morning classes. Again it depends; Usually schools also offer a lot of different promotions. So at a certain point a school may cost usually $270 but they’re doing a promotion in which if you buy 10 weeks you’ll get two for free. So we also tried to work around those promotions to make sure that students can also a good value out of what they’re… What they’re looking for.
And what do these schools usually offer in terms of classes and hours? If someone wants to study in Australia they sign up with the school, is that, you know, eight hours a day every single day? is it 1 hour a day every single day? What are the expectations that the students should have with regards to studying English?
So student visas for international students will require the student to actually study 20 hours per week, minimum. And they will have to attend 80 percent of the school or the classes, otherwise they’ll be reported to immigration. So their stay in Australia is based exclusively on their compliance with the laws of their school, right? So usually schools will be between 20 and 25 hours per week, the minimum obviously being the 20 hours per week that they have to attend. It’ll be between four and five hours per hour per day. And they will, again, they will have to attend the 80 percent of the classes. There’s differing kinds of courses. So the most general course will be General English. It will touch a little bit of everything. A little bit of, you know, pronunciation, a little bit of speaking, of writing. Usually general English courses are better viewed for students that don’t have a lot of a level of English. And then you go in to more profound courses like IELTs preparation or Cambridge preparation, which is… Prepares the students to actually take the official exam. Those courses usually are a little bit more intense, and will give a little bit more work to the student.
And so what is there a… Is there a minimum level of English that you you must have in order to be that young man in Spain that leaves Spain and comes to Australia and gets into an Australian school, or get a visa? Do you need a certain level to do that?
Not for English. If you want to study vocational training or higher education you will have to have a previous level of English just because, obviously, there are more skilled courses and you will require to at least understand what’s going on in the class. Otherwise for English courses you don’t require any level of English , any previous level of English. We have students that come with very basic, basic elementary level of English. Those students will more likely go into courses like general English. More experienced, or people that have a little bit more higher level will try to go into more specific English courses.
Alright, so you’ve done that. You’ve organised which school you’re going to go to. I don’t know whether or not to touch on getting airfares for Australia. Is there any advice that you would have regarding how to get to Australia and how to save money doing so?
Enjoying Aussie English?
Support AE on Patreon today so I can bring you even better content!
Well, from Spain and Italy, we both have an agreement. So in Spain, I think it’s with Singapore Airlines and with Emirates, the students get a little discount from being our students, and if they go directly to the airline they’ll be able to get to, for example, Singapore Airlines will give the students the ability to, if they fly from Spain to Australia, they’ll have instead of 30 kilos of luggage they’ll be able to have 40. So it’s a little bit… They’ll have a little bit of extra room to bring personal stuff. Emirates will give them a little student discount. In terms of tips to get… I mean, there’s no real formula to get a cheap deal to come to Australia, it’s very far away. So usually prices are very standard and doesn’t really vary too much.
But it’s worth checking with you guys, just in case you know, that you have the option of either getting bonuses or more space to take stuff on the plane or to save a little bit of money ?
Oh brilliant, alright. Okay so you’ve got your flight. You get to Australia. You jump off the plane. What do you do then? Where do you live? And what are the options? And should you have organised that before getting on the plane, or is it okay to wing it and just get off the plane and you’ll be sweet?
So I think both of the options are okay. A lot of students prefer organising the first month of accommodation from Europe. The options usually are a little bit more expensive than if you just come into Australia and look for other options. Usually accommodation from Europe will cost… Will include obviously a family . .. Accommodation . .. The options are either family living within family, so you’ll . .. You’ll sleep with or live with the family and it’s included lunch, breakfast and dinner. The other option is the possibility of living in a student accommodation. But usually what we do recommend students is that they get a hostel for the first 10 days when they arrive here. It’s the cheapest option honestly. Come here and then once they’re here find a better… There’s heaps and heaps of pages – facebook pages, Gumtree. There’s a lot of places where you can actually then find better deals.
Is it a really good way to socialise first, too? To get to a hostel and meet a few other foreigners and other people travelling around and at least, sort of, hit the ground running with your social life and make some friends, right?
So I mean there’s pros and cons and everything right? Like everything in life. But if you get accommodation from Europe and you already organise the first month it’s going to be a little bit easier for you to, obviously, come you’re a little bit more relaxed. You have to think about having to find anything else.
And you got time to look, right?
Exactly. On the contrary it’s a little bit more expensive than if you just come and find a hostel. My recommendation usually is just come here for the first 10 days get a hostel. Meet a lot of new people at the hostel. Socialize. Start looking around… Once you arrive start looking with your… Especially in the school you’ll meet a lot of people and be able to find a better accommodation.
And I guess you would suggest don’t move in with people from your country . Like try and avoid organising a share house or something with other Spanish speakers or Italian speakers.
Yeah we see it a lot with people that want to travel together. Actually we get people that want to do the experience together. Two or three friends book the course, book everything together. We usually push them to go to different schools but sometimes they’ll want to go to the same school and that’s fine. Most of the schools won’t put them in the same class anyway. They try to divide nationalities so it is likely that even if they do come together that they will end up in the same class. But if they do all come together, what we do recommend is that at least they try to live separately. That way their experience will be more immersive. So it’s not the same as coming and living in a house full of people that you need to speak English with, otherwise you can communicate then being in a house with your mates from Spain and speaking in Spanish all day.
Well, not even that too. There is the language aspect of but then there’s the social aspect; If you’ve already got a friend or two friends here, you are a lot less likely to go out and try and meet people, and feel about pressure. No good. So what would hostel’s usually set you back, money-wise, per night? Do you have any figures off the top of your head?
I think a more or less we’re talking about maybe 30 40 dollars per night. So it really depends. There are some cheaper options if you share with eight people instead of with three or four. There’s various options, but usually it’s around to between 20 and 40 dollars per night.
And what’s it like renting in Melbourne? so you’ve you’ve come you’ve stayed in a hostel or you stay with a family for a short period of time. What would the next step be then for trying to find a house? What would you suggest people do and should they look for things like a shared house or should they try and get a house of their own? You know, on the on the bond. Get the bond paid and do that. Or I guess… what would you suggest?
Yeah. So when students arrive what we usually recommend is that they go into all of the Facebook pages on which people are renting a room. It depends on how much the student wants… How about how much they want to spend. Usually in a room if you share a room with someone else obviously will be cheaper than if you have your own room.
The answer is usually if you can if you can list them off the top of your head roughly…
In Melbourne you’re looking around between 150 and 200 dollars for a shared room. 200 250 for your own room. Again it depends. We have students that get really sweet deals and get their own room for 170. Get students that maybe you want to be more centralised than the CBD and pay a little bit more for your own room. It’s also a lot of luck. What we do recommend though is that unless you’re a going to be in Australia for a long time, and by a long time I mean a year and a half/two years, not going into getting an actual lease of the your own. It’s always there… There’s plenty of places that you can sub rent the room and it’s easier, also, to leave those places rather than having your own lease and having to have the hassle of having to find someone else to pick up your lease where you left it.
And they’re a lot less likely to give you a lease to a place of it’s only six months. They’re going to want the year, two years on that sort of thing. Okay, so for people who have kept up to now, schools are going to be between what? two or three hundred dollars a week, roughly? and then rent for a house might be slightly less than that. So you’re probably looking at between what? Maybe 450 to six hundred dollars for your weekly expenses with regards to what a school’s going to cost and rents going to cost. Do you have any quick advice with regards to groceries and food? How to find food here in Australia that’s affordable and the price that you’d look out for that as well?
So we always talk about when… Actually when students arrive we give them a little welcome package in which we give them a little bit of tips of when to do their shopping and where to find cheap stuff. In terms of groceries here, I can speak for Melbourne. That’s my experience. The cheapest supermarket is ALDI which any Spanish person will actually recognise because there are ALDIs in Spain as well. But other than that, usually Coles is pretty, relatively cheap. We do push students to also go to actually local markets like the Queen Victoria Market or the south market. It’s in terms of, you know, fruit and veggies it’s a cheaper option. We also try to tell them to stay within things that are in a season and so that’s something that sometimes we forget living in such a globalized world where we have everything at our hand. But if you usually stay in season in autumn you buy your mushrooms and in summer you buy your mangoes. Usually your you’ll stay within a good… a good budget.
And the food’s probably going to be better quality right? it hasn’t been frozen or traded or imported from a long way away. So what would people be looking at spending for groceries on a weekly kind of budget? Maybe one to two hundred dollars?
Yeah I would say maybe a hundred, a hundred and fifty dollars per hour per week. It also really depends how much how much food you eat.
And what your standards are, right?
Exactly. So I’m very tiny and I don’t need a lot so probably my intake is not as much and my partner who is like double my size. But yeah we’re talking about maybe a hundred hundred and fifty dollars per week in groceries. It also depends on the city that you’re in.
So you’re between maybe six hundred and seven hundred fifty bucks now a week. How can we offset that by finding a job, okay? So you’ve obviously had to pay for your school ahead of time and then you get . .. I guess to get the visa you kind of have to show that you have a certain amount of money to pay for things like accommodation and support yourself. What job prospects are there for people who are studying? And what are they allowed to do in terms of hours per week? and what are they likely to be paid?
So let me just jump back at a comment you made. So not all of the countries that come to Australia with the student they will need to show funds so. Countries like Spain, Italy, France – they will not have to show funds when they ask for the visa. In terms of the government, they can always ask whatever they want to, obviously. So they can still have the chance that they do ask. But usually in general terms that’s not something that you have to show. So you can have your little savings and have paid the school, and not necessarily have to show any funds to the government. Countries like Colombia will need… Or Brazil, they will need to show a little bit more stability.
And what amount of money would they need to accrue for those Columbian Brazilian listeners? How much would be a minimum amount of money to have saved up?
So usually we’re talking about 1600 dollars per every month that you want to be in Australia.
So more or less is what we are… Is what we would recommend.
So that’s why it really does depend on how long you want to stay. It’s not just that there’s a minimum that you need to arrive with, it’s your stay. Your length of time.
Exactly. And from that, once that come here we’ll give them all of the options are towords working. So we do a lot of job sessions. So you do jump sessions and Spanish and Italian and French, and we help all students with all of the processes and all of the steps that they need to take towards starting to find a job. So we’ll help them upon arrival also to talk about how to get the TFN and how to start their job-world in Australia.
And what is the TFN, quickly?
Yes, the TFN is the tax file number. it’s what all students or all people in Australia will need in order to be able to work legally in Australia. Once we apply for the tax file number then we can start legally working and looking for jobs. Our job will generally, depending obviously on what the kind of job and how many hours and everything but usually a student will be able to sustain him or herself in Australia while working their 20 allowed hours per week. So even if they did have… They paid out of the school from offshore. They came and they paid all of the fees and accommodation and everything. They’ll be able to pay for their everyday expenses with their job that they acquire here in Australia.
What kind of job opportunities are there and what is the amount of money they’re likely to be paid per hour?
So usually it obviously depends on a lot of factors but the majority of the students end up working in hospitality. That’s where the most jobs are available. Not because that’s the sector where there’s more jobs but because it’s a sector that is the most flexible with the student visa. So we have to remember that the student visa will allow the student to work only 20 hours per week while school is in session. They will actually be able to work full time when school is not in session. So when school is in session they’ll have their five hours per day that they’re in school or in their English course and then they’ll have the rest of the day to be able to work. Obviously that gives them roughly 20 hours per week to work. Casual working which is what students will likely get pays between 20 and 23 dollars per hour. So that should be able to cover the cost of accommodation, groceries and a little bit of… It depends on your way of life I think.
As a quick side note I was working at a restaurant in Melbourne called Portillo Rosseau which was a Spanish restaurant and I was just a waiter while I was studying and it was twenty five dollars an hour. Casual, flexible hours. So it is the kind of thing where you will get… you will get paid very well and I guess too… Should you make sure that you are doing it legally on the books as well? If you want to get paid the proper wage and not be taken advantage of?
Yeah obviously we always warn students there’s always going to be establishments that try to take advantage of the student. Generally speaking it’s pretty regulated so I wouldn’t… Like anything in the world, right, you always have to be wary about things that are legal or they take you out of the legality but generally speaking it’s pretty, pretty regulated. We also put students in contact with Fair Work in case they do have this problem of not getting paid or people that have been paid less than what they were supposed to. We have some success stories of people that, you know, didn’t know that they were being paid less than what they were supposed to, then finding out, going to Fair Work and actually going to court and winning. So Australia… That’s also one of the things that I love about Australia – is that it’s very regulated and that you will have the support of the government when it comes to the illegality that of establishments that do try to take advantage.
Well that’s what I’ve experienced a bit too. I mean I’ve in the past worked for establishments where they pay you what we get what we call “cash in hand”, where it’s off the books. It’s not legal. They give you the money but they give you… They require a certain amount of time. And they’ll generally pay you less than they would if you are on the books because they’re not getting taxed. So you do end up in that sort of situation it happens and maybe that’s your only option but I would say if you get… If you’re getting paid less than seventeen dollars an hour and they’re asking you to work more hours than say you’re legally allowed to be, I would be getting out of that situation and trying to find something better. And obviously if I can come and talk to you at Go Study to get advice and they can go to Fair Work too because I think the average Australian, too, won’t take too kindly to hearing about foreign people coming here and being taken advantage of. It pisses me off a lot.
That’ s a foreign person. if you don’t feel like it’s okay… if you feel uncomfortable about something that’s happening at work or even at the English schools, I take it, don’t just let it happen because of the language barrier or it’s a foreign country. Do definitely report it to someone and…
For sure, yeah! We always push people to actually report everything in the two instances. so if something is wrong at school we always push students to actually come and talk to us. That’s why we’re here: We’re here to help, we’re here to be able to support you, and if they are thinking that they’re being taken advantage of at work a lot of people have this worry “Oh! I’ve been working for two weeks. Cash in hand. I don’t like it. I think this is not what I’m supposed to do but I don’t want to report it because I am the one them working cash in hand!” Actually they are covered. Their work will not tell them that they’re the wrong ones, but the person that is in the wrong is the establishment that is paying cash in hand. So in that sense people who are… Think that they’re in… That they’re scared of reporting because they are working cash in hand, they shouldn’t because The wrongdoing is on the side of the establishment.
Exactly! If the government is going after anyone it’s not going to be you it’s the company. Alright, and so you’ve come to Australia, you’ve got the schools sorted, you’ve gotten housing sorted, you’ve got a job now. I guess, do you have anything to say with regards to the resume and how to get the job? Should you go to these places and hand them the resume yourself or can you do it online? What what sort of advice would you have?
We always tell students that 80 percent of the jobs that are available are not advertised online. So we always push students to actually go with their CVs, go around and give them personally. We are… In our job sessions that we do with our students, we help them with the creation of the CVs and adapting the CVs from their European version or their home country version to the Australian version. It’s a little bit different – it varies from country to country. But we try to adapt it obviously to Australian standards.
What do employers here usually want to see on the resume? Because I guess one key thing is, for me at least, working and handing out resumes. Keep it short and sweet, right? People don’t want to a novel. They don’t want you to hand them something like this and be like “I’m qualified!”.
So we always tell them to keep it short, keep it one page. And a lot of other countries you put a picture but in Australia you usually don’t include a picture.
Especially if you’ve walked in the yourself, obviously.
Enjoying this episode?
Get the bonus content for this episode with quizzes and vocab breakdown!
Especially, yes. And another big thing is making sure that the jobs that you’re listing are things that will make sense with the job. So one of the most common things that, as international students we hear, when people grab our resumes, because we’re used to from Spain or Italy, to put it on is “You are all overqualified for this job!” So we tend to write everything that we’ve done and everything that we studied, so I’ll say “I have a masters degree in this and a bachelor degree in that and I worked in United Nations,” and then when they actually look at your CV and you’re applying for a waitress position they’ll say “Okay, well you’re overqualified. Why is someone that worked at the UN want to work in ah as a waitress?” So we always make sure that the student puts only the work that is related to the position that they’re asking for.
And that’s a really good point because that happens with us as well – with Australians here. I have to be careful when I go… when I went for jobs like that not to oversell myself because if they see that you’ve got you know a master’s degree and a bachelor’s degree and you’re wanting to do you know waiting they’re going to be like this guy’s going to get bored he’s going to probably want a better job that pays more, so he is not going to stay here. He is going to leave a few months after starting. And so yeah, only put down the work that’s relevant to that job. Great, and so what are the opportunities though, too? Are you likely to get, you know, once you’ve finished the English school are there places that you can get jobs where you could lead to permanent residency or living in Australia too? Are there jobs that people should try and aim for if that’s their goal as opposed to just working in a cafe or?
So there’s many different possibilities right. A lot of people will come to Australia love and want to stay further the best way obviously to stay further let’s say you haven’t been studying for six months. It’s going into vocational training. So studying something that will increase your CV, will increase your knowledge, will still be able to give you a little bit more time to be in Australia and find a more qualified job. If the goal is to migrate to Australia that is a conversation that should be done with a migration agent. There’s obviously certain jobs or certain fields in which it is more likely to get a sponsor or there are jobs that are more likely to lead to a longer stay in Australia. But again that is something that needs to be discussed with a migration agent.
And that’s going to depend on you, right? That’s going to be a person-by-person kind of thing.
And not only that it also depends on a lot of luck. So we have a lot of students that might come here for six months do an interview for a part time job in a let’s say architects studio and have the luck that they were trying to sponsor or that they really love the way you work or for whatever reason you land a sponsorship within six months of being here. and I have students that’ve been here for four years studying and I have never landed anything more permanent. So really also depends on how you move yourself around.
I think a good example of that for me was having a friend who I worked with at the restaurant at Portillo Rosso who was Chilean and she’d come to Australia with her boyfriend who was studying at university on a partner visa, but she ended up becoming a shared manager of this restaurant. And then as a result of that… So she’d worked as a waitress and then got sort of promoted to managing and through managing they could sponsor her then to permanently live in Australia, potentially at least for the next four years, and so that’s something to think about too. When you get one of these jobs in a cafe you may still be able to climb the ladder and get an important role that they could then sponsor you for to keep you’re in Australia.
Now one of the biggest tips that can be given to the student who comes to Australia maybe likes or wants to stay is to remember that they can move diagonally within their sector so that even if they did study microbiology in their home country maybe they come here and they start working in the restaurant. If their goal is to be able to stay here maybe they will have to sort of explore the possibility of you know going towards restaurant manager or move diagonally towards a different goal than what they thought that they wanted to do.
And so what have you found with students who have come to Australia and they’ve done these English courses, they’ve got their English to a really good level, they’ve got a decent job like this. What tends to be the outcomes after that. Do they end up, you know, getting hired getting PR here? migrating to Australia or travelling Australia or do they end up leaving Australia? What tends to be the patterns of what happens?
So it really actually is interesting because it really depends on, and this is very broadly speaking, but it depends a lot on nationalities. So different nationalities would look for different outcomes for them in Australia. So generally speaking for example the Spanish student will look to have an experience here in Australia. Will be here for generally a year or two years and then they’ll go back home. Italians, on the contrary, will come here and will try to stay here forever and ever. So it really depends on where they come from or what their goals are. Generally speaking let’s say the lifespan of a student will start with English, go into vocational training, and once they’ve done vocational training are sort of splits in two. so one side of the population , or let’s say of the students, who will try to find either sponsorship or skill migration vias or partner visas or say without furthering their studies. The other the other part will try to do something like master’s degree and spend a little more time pursuing a career in furthering their knowledge.
So that’s a good segway too. You’ve come here, you’ve enrolled initially into an English course because you had zero english or you had you know a little bit of English. You’ve gotten into fluent and you can communicate. What are the options and what should you do once that first course finishes?
So once a first course, and let’s say that the first cours is the English course, the best way or the easiest way to be able to stay in Australia and further your career is like I said going in to VET courses. so VET courses are vocational training courses and those courses will be able to give a little bit extra push in what you’ve already studied. So usually are things like business and management or a leadership management courses business marketing and communications so it’s things that will give extra skills to the to the student. Those courses generally are let’s say are more specific and will give a little bit extra to the student but might not necessarily mean that are open PR opportunities.
So do you have to hunt for those yourself to some degree? it’s a little more on you to try and find certain jobs or opportunities with companies in order to try and get PR?
So in order to. If a student’s goal is to get PR again they need to sit down with the migration lawyer. They’ll be able to actually sit down, look at what you’ve done home, what you have been doing here, what your career looks like, and be able to guide you and say “okay look perfect you you’ve been an architect look there are looking for architects in rural Australia you’re up your best option is to go and try to work in Adelaide,” for example, “for 2 years.” And that will be able to give you a little bit more opportunities.
So is that something that you should have in mind when you get here a year early you just realise that it may not be that you just get to decide “I want to go to Melbourne I want to live in Melbourne I want to get PR and citizenship,” you need to be open to moving around Australia, doing different jobs, at least in the short term before those things are likely to happen.
Definitely! Definitely if the goal is to try to migrate permanently, obviously keep an open mind in being able to find your place wherever it’s needed, right. But The best thing that we can do… And students can come here and I’ll be more than happy to give them options in migration lawyers that we work with…
That was my next question – how do I get in touch with these people?
So usually we recommend i-Migration. They are our preferred partner but there are plenty of partners all around Australia that obviously cater to international students. If students go to i-Migration and say that they’ve come through Go Study of they’re learned from coming to the office or from this are from this interview, they’ll be able to get a little discount on the first on the first consultation. But I would definitely, definitely push students that if their goal is to move permanently to Australia they need to speak to a qualified migration agent.
Ah brilliant! And I guess, before we sort of finish up since you’ve given us so much good information here I want to get it out there but, what’s your experience been, and I guess reported experiences from other people in all the different cities in Australia? Are there places that you would recommend going or trying first or not going? How have you found that?
So again there are so many people in the world that it depends a lot on what you’re looking for, right. In terms of choosing your destination. I would definitely see what it is that the is. So for example if it is very important for student to be able to work to sustain themselves I would push them to come to Melbourne. Melbourne, for right now, is the best city to come to be able to actually work and sustain yourself while your studying. There isn’t a lot of competition per say with other international students so all of us students right now are working. If you’re looking to have an experience a little bit more towards what is sold to us from offshore of Beaches and surfing, I’d probably go to Queensland, not to Melbourne.
You going to be about an hour and a half away from any decent beach in Melbourne.
Exactly! So… But if they want to have sort of that experience of… Look, maybe the job is not as important but what I want is having a good surfing experience and having a great Australian, how we see it in TV, Let’s say, I would go up to Queensland. But from all the cities that I’ve been… Obviously I haven’t been in all of the cities of Australia but from my experience all of the students that come to Melbourne usually have the most complete experience in terms of their Australian experience.
So would you even just suggest start here and… You know, because you can move cities, I take it, if they want to move English schools to is that a possibility?
Yes a lot of schools actually have campuses in various cities. I would also probably recommend coming to Melbourne, starting your experience in Melbourne, maybe in summer, and then move towards… In winter move towards other destinations. You can definitely already plan your trip or your stay in Australia like that. A lot of students do. Three months in one city, three months in another. Experience both cities and have a little bit more of an overall experience.
And so are there any places you should stay away from? Not necessarily because they’re bad but because you will have fewer opportunities to get a decent school or to get work or to get accommodation?
Not necessarily. Smaller cities obviously will have less job opportunities. So for example, when we talk about a student that really really needs to be able to find a job quickly to be able to sustain themselves in Australia I’d probably wouldn’t recommend them to go to Gold Coast in winter. Gold Coast in winter, there won’t be a lot of opportunity. There’s not a lot of jobs. Gold Coast in summer? Yes! lots of approachable…
Lots of tourist lots of jobs!
A lot of stuff to do and probably be able to find a job. So there isn’t anything that you would be… That I would steer off. In any city you’d be able to find a decent school and decent opportunity.
I guess a good point to make there, a good anecdote, is my girlfriend came to Australia maybe two and a half years ago and she went straight to Townsville, which is an isolated small town. I think it’s like one or two hundred thousand people in northern Queensland, and she couldn’t find a job for a year, so she had enough money to support herself and she was studying. But yeah, she couldn’t find a decent job for a year. But the good thing was she did all this volunteer work. So for people who can’t find a job and if you’re seeing the job as a way of interacting with native speakers I’m sure that you’ll be able to find a plethora of volunteering opportunities if you want to work with animals or people or events that you will still enable you to practice your English. That was how she did it for the first year she… I think she was during school but then she was also just volunteering all the time and it really took her English up and then after that actually she got all these references from the volunteer places that helped her get a really good job. So there’s opportunities there. Awesome, no worries! Well Lorena from Go Study Australia. Thank you so much. How can people find out more about Go Study Australia and get in contact with you guys?
Yeah you can go to our Website: GoStudy.com.au . You can find us on Facebook, you can add me on my personal Facebook profile. And yeah I mean, from, if you’re offshore, if you’re in Italy France or Spain you can go to our offices there. If you’re here in Australia, in Melbourne Sydney, Perth or Brisbane you can stop by. Or if you need anything you can just contact us online.
Brilliant! And I guess that’s the biggest takeaway, guys; Don’t do this alone. Contact places like Go study Australia and get help. If you have questions… If they can’t help you they’re going to let you know but you’re not going to know unless you ask. So, awesome! Well thank you so much for your time.
No I thank you Pete!
My pleasure! We’ll have to do this again soon and I guess if you guys have any questions that we didn’t cover in today’s interview make sure to put them below wherever you’re watching this or listening to this and hopefully I can get there around here again in the future and ask her those questions so Cheers guys! Cya soon!
Alright, guys, so I hope you enjoy that interview. Remember that if you would like any kind of help or advice with regards to studying English in Australia, finding accommodation, finding a job, make sure that you contact Go Study Australia, guys. Okay?
And yeah, big thanks to Lorena. I’m going to try and get her again on the podcast and interview her about some other things with regards to coming to Australia and studying here. So, if you guys have any kinds of questions that you would like me to ask her specifically next time, make sure that you e-mail me them or comment them on this episode of the podcast. Just get in contact with me and let me know what more I can do to get you information from Go Study Australia or from Lorena.
Anyway, thanks for joining me today, guys. I really appreciate it. And I’ll see you soon. See ya.
Watch Aussie English Interviews Here!
Enjoying this episode?
Get the bonus content for this episode with quizzes and vocab breakdown!
Success! Now check your email to confirm your subscription.Post Views: 4,429
By pete — 1 year ago
AE 388 – Interview: Scottish Accents, Favourite Movies, & More with Christian from Canguro English
G’day, guys. Welcome to this episode of Aussie English. Today is another Aussie English interview episode. So, this episode was relatively impromptu. It was unexpected. It was spontaneous. And it was on Instagram. This was the first interview that I’ve done on Instagram. So, I got on Instagram. If you haven’t checked it out, go to Aussie English on Instagram. I have an account there, obviously, and I was on there fiddling around and I was chatting to Christian from Canguro English, recently, and he suggested that we do a live class together. So, apparently, before I actually realised that you could do this, you can do live classes on Instagram. So, we did that tonight. We were chatting about all kinds of different things in the live class. We were talking about different accents in English comparing American English, British English, Australian English, and talking about the difficulties that you may or may not have when travelling in these different countries if you have only been exposed to a single kind of English. We also talked about our experiences learning languages, whether bad pronunciation is worse than bad grammar, or good pronunciation vs. good grammar. If you had to choose one, which would be the one that you would choose to hear in someone speaking English? Christian and I have a bit of a debate about that. We talk about the future plans for Aussie English and for Canguro English. Christian has just started his podcast and there’s one episode up already. The link will be in the description for you guys to go and check out Christian’s podcast but just sit back and enjoy this episode, guys. It’s just a natural conversation between Christian, a fellow Australian, who’s currently living in Spain, and myself, obviously.
And remember, that if you want the breakdown of 5 to 10 minutes in this episode, you can jump over to the Aussie English Classroom where you will get a quiz and some vocab to study for a section of this interview episode. So, this is all in a bid to try to help you improve your English.
Anyway guys, I won’t hold you up any more. Here we go. Christian from kangaroo English and me just have a yarn.
Hello everybody and welcome to this live stream. I’m going to be going live this morning with Pete from Aussie English. The man, the legend…
Good! It worked! It worked.
Yeah! I had exactly the same problem with Adriana. For some reason, I’m like… I’m like, you know, cancer! Nobody wants me in their livestream.
I can’t even understand it was “unable to join”. So, it had like everyone else showing up that had them, and I could invite them, but for you said “unable”. And then, when I came in I just had to send the request. So, it’s technology.
So, maybe I have some setting wrong in my Instagram. I don’t know what it is, because I looked yesterday. I have to do some googling and find out what the problem is.
Man, I… this was the first time I even used it, yesterday, when I got on. I had no idea. I don’t do any of the live things on here. I’ve only ever used Facebook. So, I was just there like…
Wow! So, it’s incredible. This is amazing.
It’s pretty good. It’s pretty crazy. The only thing I think that they can improve on is it muting you when I talk and vice versa, ’cause I feel like I can’t hear your reactions whilst I’m talking until I stop talking. It’s like Skype.
So, where are you right now.
I am in my parents’ kitchen and living room. Behind me you can probably see their living room, and then their kitchen is here, and I am just sitting down at this big viking table. You can see it here. This is my desk at the moment.
It’s a beautiful house, actually.
Yeah, they renovated it a few years ago. So.
It looks like it has lots of glass everywhere.
Yeah. It’s pretty cheeky. If you come… you see behind me here there’s a courtyard with windows and everything, and then my room is up here, and I have a little… (I’ll) see if I can show you. I have a cute little like outdoor patio here and my bedroom’s behind here. So.
Is that… Are you living in the granny flat?
It’s part of the house. It’s still joined. But to get there, I have to go… (I’ll) see if I could show you guys, all the way… all the way up these stairs, and then turn in the door at the end there to get to my bedroom. So, you can see why I prefer to be down here. And it’s yellow, because the Sun’s setting behind me over here. So… I know.
I have the exact opposite this morning, ’cause right now the sun is just coming out.
You look like you’ve just woken up. Are you having coffee?
Yes. I woke up about half an hour ago. I’m definitely not a morning person. It takes me a long time to actually, you know, get started. So.
I’m the same. I get up at like I’m 9:30-10(am). That’s when I crawl out of bed, and I’m like, “Oh, yeah, I can do stuff now”, and then, I go to bed at 3am. So, that’s good.
Well. Yeah, well, I think probably from an Australian that’s a little bit more, like, abnormal, ’cause I’m like… I know that a lot of Australians get up very early, right?
I guess there are quite a few, especially down here, I don’t… you probably can’t… you won’t be able to see it, but through the windows here, if I take my head off (the screen), there’s sand dunes just here and then there’s a beach on the other side. And so, mum every morning gets up at like eight o’clock and goes on walks the dog and there’s, you know, hundreds of people down on the beach walking their animals. So, they’re all the people who get up early in are peppy and, like, “Oh… let’s get, you know… rise and shine!”.
But what a spectacular place to live. So, the beach is just there, just like.
Well. A kilometer away. Half a kilometer away. Maybe 500 metres. Yeah, so it’s pretty good.
Well, I know where I’ll be staking when I visit you.
Man, you should come down. I’m trying… I have to live here and, like, rent whilst I’m trying to save up to get a place here, ’cause I want to live here in Ocean Grove, but I need to save a bit of money first. So… but it would be nice. Definitely come to Melbourne.
We’ve got a question here. Well, Tum… Tum… Ok, I let me try say this. Tumwah Shifkuna says that we look like twins in the language sphere.
Yeah, that’s it. Except I think I’m slightly more freshly-shaved. There’s a little…
You might… So, you how much more spectacular beard.
Just at the moment, though. Like, for now. I just haven’t shaved for a month.
No, it’s nice. And we have an actual question here from… Well, he has… He doesn’t have his name, but his username is “Arfander”, and he says, “Is there any accents in English that we don’t understand?”.
Yeah. I have to agree. I think the most difficult accent, I think, for most native speakers would be Scottish, right?
I think so. Maybe some of those really regional American accents like in… in the south or, I think, some of those really weird places in Canada where they live in very small… like Newfoundland, right? Where they live in very small communities. And so, it almost intensifies as a result. But I remember, as a story, when my dad used to watch Billy Connolly videos, and Billy Connolly’s a really good comedian, but he’s from Glasgow. And I remember, for the first year or two not understanding it. Dad would put these on all the time and I wouldn’t understand. I’d miss the punch line. I wouldn’t know what he was saying, ’cause his accent is so strong. So, that took a long time to adapt to.
Yeah, I think that’s the interesting thing, right? But, like, it’s not… ’cause people sort of have this idea that there are, like, strong accents, but it’s, like, all accents are equally strong. It’s just a question which accents we are accustomed to hearing.
I think that’s it. And it tends to be… it tends to be that there’s… a lot of accents might be different, but they kind of converge a bit on… the vowels aren’t that different from one another, right? Like Standard British English, Standard American English, Standard Australian English, they’re kind of the same, but as soon as you go to sort of an outlier like Scottish Glasgow accent, it’s almost like their vowels are all switched around and that’s what messes with my wiring. I’m just like.
Exactly. And the vocabulary. I mean, like, in Glasgow they have so much slang that’s very specific…
That never leaves. That, you know, we don’t see on television. We don’t see it written in newspapers. So, you just… you have know idea what it means. Like, it’s.
I had to learn a lot of that from just Billy Connolly. I think he was my only sort of conduit for learning Scottish slang, because I only ever watched him, and it took a long time of watching, rewatching, getting the context, and then I was, like, “Finally! I think I know what he’s talking about when he says, “Wellies” or, you know, “Jimmy”, or something”, and I’d be like… that’s what compounds it, right? It’s almost like the accent is one thing, but then if they speak quick and on top of that they use slang everywhere, it just makes it so much harder, ’cause you can’t parse that in real time. It’s just like.
I mean, imagine the poor English learner who, you know, who’s been studying English with a teacher for four or five years and then they go to Glasgow. They don’t understand…
But that’s the same for us, right? Like, if we did a sudden school trip in Glasgow, the average Australian would probably feel like they were in a different country. You know, like, they would be like “You alright pal? You alright? You alright?”, and you’d be like, “What are they saying?!”.
Yeah, if anyone wants to… if anyone watching wants to hear some authentic sort of Scottish… you know, with slang, they should definitely look for the comedian Billy Connolly.
Yeah, he’s brilliant. With subtitles!
I’m going to type his name down in the comments.
Billy Connolly. Connolly. Is it with two L’s?
I think so. That’s one of those… Billy, and then Con… yeah, it’s double N and double L.
Oh, yeah. He’s a funny guy.
And also, there’s a video on YouTube and sometimes I show it to my students. And if you go to YouTube.
This is the guy. If you can see him. I don’t know how the… the screen’s probably too bright, but.
I mean, he just looks like a comedian. He’s funny… just looking at it him’s funny.
He’s so good. He’s amazing.
Yeah, if… on YouTube, if you… there’s a video. If you just type in YouTube, “Scottish people speaking in English maybe”, that’s the title of the video, and it’s it’s a little excerpt from Jeremy Kyle.
And it’s these two Scottish people arguing. And honestly, it’s impossible to understand. (It’s) absolutely impenetrable. It’s crazy.
Yeah. I’ll have to find it. There’s a few of those videos. I remember seeing one where there’s a guy who’s stuck on a roof and he doesn’t know where to put his feet. And these guys are teasing him like, “Just put your feet in the flashing. Put your feet in the flashing”, and he’s say of “flashing” or something like that of the roof and the guy’s like, “Where the fuck do you want me to put my feet? Where am I supposed to put my f…”. And he’s just, like, losing it, and you’re just, like, ***laughter****. It’s amazing. It’s amazing.
But it is… like, speaking about, like, how we get used to accidents. I remember recently, I was watching an episode of… what’s the name? The Ellen Degeneres show, and she plays a game called “Accents”. So, basically you… the people, they hold, they put a tablet on their heads and it says, you know, you have to do a Scottish accent or an Irish accent or New York accent, and the actor… It was the actor…Oh, I can’t remember his name. Man, I’m getting old. I can’t have anything. Anyway it had this really famous American actor on the program. And so, they were playing the game, and he could do New York and California and Scottish and South African and he could do British. And then, she does this, and it’s says “Australian”, and he’s like, “….”. He couldn’t do it, because… and I think because nobody really sort of hears it, right? Nobody practices the Australian accent.
No one cares. No one cares about us.
I think they… you know, didn’t they do that thing where they asked all these Americans where to show Australia, and they put a map out, and they… just the dots were just everywhere from South Korea to Iraq, and, like, no one knew where it was. So, it wouldn’t surprise me. But that’s what I find interesting. People say I have a strong accent, and… who are also English speakers, and a lot of the time I feel like they’re just Americans who just aren’t exposed to the Australian accent. Whereas, we hear… we watch TV from Britain, from, you know, Ireland, Scotland, America, Canada, and so, we get sort of everything and learn to understand it. Whereas, I think countries like America and Canada are probably a lot more insular and just focus… They only see their TV. And so, learn their accents and that’s it.
What’s it like in Spain?
I met a guy from California, recently, and I asked him, I said, you know, “What do people think the British accent?”, and he was like, “Wow. It’s like the British accent is like so elegant, and, you know, like James Bond, basically.” You know.
Well, what was it like for you with learning Spanish, because obviously you had, you know, Spanish-Spanish, “cena” instead of “cena”, and then you have all of these other Spanish-speaking countries that are larger than Spain. So, it’s not like you’re not going to come across them. Was it weird learning those accents?
I think, honestly, I think that when you’re learning a language, like, the last thing that you can do is have, like, a perfect accent, and in fact, it… look, like even now, I couldn’t tell you the difference between an Argentinian Spanish accent or or a Cuban Spanish accent, because, like, those little details of the language, that comes with time, with social awareness, with cultural awareness. Like, that’s something that… that if… you have to be very deep in a language to notice. I mean, I’m sure that most of our learners wouldn’t know the difference between American accent, South African accent, you know.
South African. Especially, the Australian and New Zealand (accent) tends to be one where we hear it, we hear it, and we’re like, “Man! It’s like day and night. What are you talking about? We’re totally different!” And everyone’d to be like, “You guys are the same. It’s like…”You bastards!”.
But was it like that? Learning Spanish, was it… initially, you learn Spanish Spanish, and then had to sort of adapt and learn all these other accents to like hear and understand them? Or did you learn all of them as a result?
I think, in my experience, ’cause I only speak one other language, so I can’t say for what it’s like in other languages. Maybe it’s much more different. But, for me in Spanish, Spanish is… lots of people try to say that there’s a big difference between Spanish Spanish and Latin American Spanish, but really there isn’t. The grammar is identical. The accent is more or less, you know, the same. For example, to give you an example, one of the main differences is in Latin America, they would they would drop the ‘s’ of any plurals.
So, a correct pronunciation of cars would be “coches”, “coches”, but in Argentina they would have “coche(s)”. The ‘s’ would just…
Ah! So, it’s a shame just through context, is it? You hear, like, the articles or something before it, and you’re like, “Yeah, it’s plural.”.
Yeah, exactly. Just… I mean, context is so important in language. And the other difference would be, as you mentioned, like in Iberian Spanish, you know, the ‘Z” would be like a “Th”. But in South America it’s more like soft… like a “Sss”. And as you have “Zorro”, which is a fox, and also the famous (Zorro), in Latin America.
Oh! (I) never knew that! I didn’t realise that meant “fox”. All these years, I thought it was, like, “zero” or something.
Yeah, me too! I was like, “What do you mean, it’s “Fox”? He’s called “Fox”. That’s really weird. Exactly. Oh yeah, so some people here are saying that’s Brazilian Portuguese and Portuguese Portuguese is the same situation.
It’s actually… It’s… I think it would be a bit different from Spanish and South American Spanish, because they use different pronouns and there aren’t grammatical differences. Again, I’m not that good, I’m not that proficient, in Brazilian Portuguese, but from what I’ve read there… well, and there’ll be completely different words. Like, I remember I was learning the word for “girl” in Portuguese Portuguese, but I didn’t know, and I was just using it, and I said it to Quel, and she’s like, “You just called me a “slut”!”. And I was like, “What?”. And she’s like, “Yeah, in Brazil, that word is a bad word.”. And I was like, “But it’s… “. I showed the source, and she’s like, “Yeah it’s fine in Portugal, but in Brazil, it’s very bad for you to call women “girl” or whatever in (Portuguese)”. And I was like, “God damn it…”.
Well, yeah, but I suspect it’s similar to, like, American English and British English, like, yeah there are some differences, but the total number of differences probably fit on one piece A4.
How would you… and that’s a good segue into, I guess, the differences between British English, American English, and Australian English. From our point of view, from our biased Australian point of view, what… how would you sum up… if someone sat you down, whether they were an ESL learner or they are an American or a British person, and they said to you, “Can you just tell me what the differences are? The biggest differences that I should expect when coming to Australia? Aside from potentially pronunciation, what are the differences in the language?”. ‘Cause I’ve got a few my head that I can mention, but.
Well, I am going to throw it right back at you, because, you know, I think you’re definitely more have much… ’cause, you know, ’cause you’re still living there, and you specialise in talking about these differences. I mean, what do you (think the biggest differences are).
Don’t put me on the spot, man. Don’t put me on the spot!
I think, I guess… we kind of break rules quite a lot, I think, grammatically, at least. Instead of saying “My car”, people will say “me car”, “me car”. And they use the wrong noun, wrong personal pronoun. They’ll say, “This is me wife. This is me car. This is me stuff”, you know. So, they’ll use those, and they’ll say, instead of “those”, they’ll say “them”. “Them ones”, “Them ones over there”, instead of “those”. They’ll do those sorts of things. I think too, we won’t say… what’s another example? “You guys”, I find that I say that quite a lot for plural “you”, instead of just saying “you” and it being… just leaving it as “you all”, like, I have to add something else to always make sure that people know that I’m talking about multiple people instead of just using “you”.
Yeah. I mean it’s incredible that English lacks a pronoun to talk to a group of people. I mean it’s such necessary thing. It’s such a necessary thing, and we don’t have it. I mean, but yeah, like, you could say “yous”, “yous lot” maybe?
That would happen too. Yeah “yous” where we’ve pluralised it by putting an “S” on the end. You’ll hear bogans say that. “Yous. What are yous doing? Are yous coming? Are yous coming with us?”. I know, and you’ll be like,… I’ll be there, and I’ll be like, “Oh my gosh! I can’t handle this! I’m going to have an aneurysm!”.
But isn’t it… I mean it just… if you said to somebody, “Okay. We need to invent a pronoun, a new pronoun, for a group”, you would say, “Well, we’ll put an “S” on “you” it’s a solution. You know, “Yous.”.
I know, that’s it. I can’t think how else… I wonder… there must have been a plural pronoun that just somehow fell out of use in our history, you know, from Middle English or Old English, and I wonder if we could bring it back, you know, “thou” or “thine” or something crazy. I think also though, we probably use… the thing that blows my mind about British English, American English, and Australian English is that we quite often use the same language, but at different frequencies. So, like, I’ll say certain expressions or things like, “I reckon”. I’ll use words that the Americans and the British probably know, and they probably use from time to time, but I use them way more often, and maybe in different circumstances than they would, you know. And the same with, like… what’s an example? American saying, “It’s called out.” You know, “it’s cold out.
It’s cold out.
And you’ll be like, “Out what?”
And they’re just like, “out”, and you’re like, “Oh, “outside”. Okay, gotcha!”.
Yeah, it is… Yeah, I think, that there’s… maybe there’s a little bit of business aspect to creating this idea there’s a big difference between British English and American English, but I really… I think that there’s not. I think it’s just marketing, really. And.
Well, there’s a question for you. What advice would you give people who want to learn English, but they don’t know where they want to go, if they want to leave their country and go to an English-speaking country, which English would they… should they learn, or should they… it doesn’t matter?
I don’t think it matters. I mean, I don’t think that it is… in the history of English teaching, nobody has ever gone to a country… like, no one’s arrived in America, and people would say, “Oh! Are you speaking British English?”.
I can’t imagine… I can’t imagine too, though, be like, “I’ve just spent seven years learning British English and I ended up in Canada. Shit…!”. Like, how am I going to communicate with the locals?!”
No, but I mean, it’s never happened. I mean, you know, maybe if you had studied British English for 30 years intensely, and, you know, you had… your words were perfect, an American would think that your turn of phrase, some of your vocabulary, was British, but it would never create a problem with understanding. I mean.
I mean, so… I mean, I want to ask you a question, because I’ve been wanting to ask you this for a long time. Are you travelling around Australia in a…? Tell me about this. What are you doing? What’s your plan?
I’m not yet. I’m not yet. That’s the goal, though. That’s the goal. At the moment, I’ve just moved out of my… the house I was living in Melbourne whilst I was studying. So, I was doing my PhD up in Melbourne, and that required that I was in Melbourne to go to the university and the museum on a daily basis, but the rent is.
You finished your PhD?
Yeah, yeah, yeah. I did.
Oh my God! So, I need to call you Doctor Pete?
Please do not. Please do not call me Dr. Pete.
From now on, this is Dr. Pete, right here.
Do not call me Dr. Pete. I’m a doctor in rats, the evolution of rats. That’s… it’s meaningless.
Wow, what a great thing. No, congratulations. I know that’s a lot of work.
Enjoying Aussie English?
Support AE on Patreon today so I can bring you even better content!
Oh man, I’m so glad it’s done. Believe you me, believe me, I am so glad it’s done. So, I was… I decided to move, ’cause it was $900 dollars a month just to live in Melbourne, and I just decided I don’t need to be here, I can do it online, it’s just pointless. That’s it. I can come and mooch off my parents, and not pay anything for a short period of time. So, it’s like.
(What a) tough choice! So, but, now is the goal. I want to go around and I want to show people the real Australia. I guess, that’s the goal. I would love to go round and interview real Australians about who they are, what their Australia is, where they grew up, what they… what their opinions on things are, like, living a happy life or having good relationships with people. Those sorts of things I would love to get in and just ask the average day person and bring that to the language learning scene on the podcast or YouTube so that people can just learn Australian English, whilst also learning English, but then, understand the Australian mindset. So, that’s the goal with that at least, and that’s why I’ve got a car now, and not enough money to put fuel in it.
Wow. But like, is there not any interest from the world of academia? Like, are there not any universities interested in this project from, like, sociolinguistic perspective, or…?
(I’ve got) no idea. I should probably find out.
I think… because, you know, when they do analysis of, for example, if they want to know how many people use the present perfect when they’re talking about, I don’t know, a story of the past, they try to get hold of real recordings. And I thought that you could collaborate with the university or something.
I’ll have to get… I’ll have to get locality data on all of these people. I’ll have to get like a GPS position before I start every interview so that I can be like, “This is where they were when they spoke these words.”.
And listen, you know that in the world nobody has more money than education.
So, that’s it. We’re loaded. We’re balling.
They might pay for your car, right?
Who knows. Who knows, but it’s probably worth following up and asking, yeah, if anyone here has interest in it, or… no idea.
There’s some questions here for some people.
Yeah, sorry, guys.
LiveLifeEnglish wants to know what our favorite movie is.
Oh my God. I hate when people say, “What is your 1 favorite…?”, and you’re like, “That’s worse than just saying, “Do you have a few…?””, and you can, like, spout them off. I’ll let you go first.
For me, I think probably my favorite film would be Eyes Wide Shut. Stanley Kubrick’s final film. An incredible film. And a lot of people really hated that movie. So.
Or maybe a close second would be the film There Will Be Blood with Daniel Day Lewis. That was an amazing movie.
Oh, man. He is incredible. I think that’s probably an easy thing for me to say, “Who is your favorite actor?”, than, “What is your favorite film?”, but based on that, I would say The Dark Knight with Heath Ledger. That blew me away. That absolutely blew me away. He was phenomenal.
Yeah, he was incredible. I mean, no one can ever be The Joker again, ’cause he was just so good.
I know, Jared Leto tried and it was a shambles.
So, is… would he… would you say that Heath Ledger was your favorite actor as well?
He was one of them, definitely. I think Tom Hardy is one of my favorite actors too. He is really versatile, and he was in the third installment of that Batman series, as, you know, “Let the games begin”, to be like this I guess, “Let the games begin, Batman”. Like… He was jacked in that film. He was… that was amazing.
Ok. There’s another question here. What is… what is worse to you as native speakers, grammatical mistakes or a bad accent?
I think for me, you can have the strongest accent in the world, but if you don’t make as many grammatical mistakes it’s just not as difficult to listen to, because it takes me a moment to get used to your accent and then it’s fine. But, if I hear a native person making massive grammatical errors, I’d prefer to listen to someone with a strong accent who doesn’t make as many grammatical errors than a native speaker who makes lots. You know. So, it’s not that big a deal, but if I had to choose, I think that would be it.
Yeah, it’s funny that, isn’t it? It’s almost like a type of prejudice, like, in the sense that we expect… you expect a native speaker to be able to control grammar properly, right?
I don’t know if it’s that or if it’s more that I just… my brain has to work harder to fill in the gaps. If someone makes grammatical errors, I have to think harder about… what are they trying to say? Whereas, if the accent’s just strong, that’ll… as soon as I get zoned in on the vowel sounds they’re making or they’re different… slightly different consonant sounds, then I don’t have to work anymore after I’ve realized, “Okay, they’ve got a slight accent. I’m used to it”, but if they make big grammatical errors, sometimes I’ll be like… you know, like, if they completely change phrasal verbs, you know, to say “look under” instead of “look after someone”. They could say that perfectly, and I’d be like, “I don’t understand what you’re trying to say.”.
I’m going to get up and just turn on the light, ’cause the Sun’s setting me. There we go. Let there be light!
What about you Christian?
Well, yeah. I mean, really… I think it’s a difficult question to answer. I think, if I can understand you, I don’t really care. Oh, man see… (Pete just put a hat on his head)
I’ve got to… if I do this, my head’s shiny, right? So, the light comes from here. And, you know, so I’ve got to, like, put my hat on to cover the light off my head. Bald man issues, bald man issues.
Oh my God. Maddik said that he prefers to listen to native speakers because his brain doesn’t have to work as hard.
I’ve got an interesting anecdote for that. I… when I was learning French really really hard, like, working away at it, and I was doing it every day, I found it so easy to speak to French people, and then one day when I was at the gym, I was speaking to one of my friends who was French and another guy who was Australian came up to me, and started speaking French to me, and I had the biggest issues with his accent. He had it… he didn’t have… He didn’t put any accent on to try and speak French. So, instead of trying to use the French accent, he just didn’t use it. And then, on top of that, he was making a lot of grammatical errors. And again, it wasn’t a judgment on him or anything, it was just that, all of a sudden, I went from perfectly understanding the native speaker to having to work really really hard with trying to work out, as someone who’s… French isn’t my first language, so that made it even more difficult. But yeah. So, I can understand both. You’re having breakfast at the same time, are you?
As you know, I only got up five minutes before we started. So, you know. I eating… it’s more malt loaf.
Malt loaf? What’s in it?
It’s a really dense fruit bread. It’s really good. The problem is it’s very cloying.
It’s very what?
Cloying. Like, it sticks to everything. It’s very intensely, you know.
You’re not producing enough saliva to deal with it.
You are getting old Christian!
Yeah, let me just take my teeth out so that I can eat it better.
That’s it. You just need a glass of saliva from yesterday that you can just sip on every now and then, you know.
My coffee’s all gone. SO…
That’s it. But what about you? What were you saying? Which is more difficult for you, a strong accent or bad grammar?
I don’t know. I think if I can only if I can understand you, I don’t care. Like, if… like, you could have perfect grammar and a bad accent, and I can’t understand you, or, you know, you could have really terrible grammar, but you pronounce it words well and I can understand you it’s… so many different… I mean.
It’s almost like it depends what grammatical errors you’re making, really.
Because, I had the opposite experience to you. One day I was at the school, and this person came in, a Spanish person and said… and said in English, “I ah…” he came in and he was like this. “incomprehensible English”, and I was like, “What are you saying to me?”.
And then, in the end, we spoke in Spanish to organise the class, and during this time, there was a student waiting to have class with me, and she understood what this guy said perfectly.
Her mind… Her… she had like the accent, the Spanish accent, when speaking English was, like, in her mind. It was very peculiar. I couldn’t understand the guy. He was completely… you know, he displayed all of the worst characteristics of the Spanish accent in English, and you know, he spoke really fast, and oh man, but…
So, what advice would you have for English learners then, who say, “Alright. I am ever going to work on my pronunciation or grammar. Which one should I focus on first and, you know, most heavily.
I don’t know. I think people have an idea. You know, they have no idea what their problem is. Don’t you think? Like, I think people know.
Your weak spots.
Yeah, and I think you just have to be honest with yourself. And I think, as well, you have to be perceptive. Like, people don’t understand you, you’re speaking and they’re like, “???”. You have to work on that.
Enjoying this episode?
Get the bonus content for this episode with quizzes and vocab breakdown!
I think that’s one of the keys that I always tell my students is once you get to the intermediate to advanced level the thing you need to start becoming an expert at is finding what things you’re screwing up, whether it’s your accent or it’s grammar, and it’s not that you can just identify them all today, find the answer, and “bam!” it’s all fixed. It’s an ongoing process, literally, on a day to day basis, for the next year, 10 years, 100 years. You’re going to have to spend… just constantly identifying your mistakes. And it’s the same with me. I have to keep doing that on a daily basis with my English. I find things that I’m saying, you know, incorrectly, maybe even my pronunciation. Until two years ago I was saying “pronOUncation” instead of “pronUnciation”. And at the time I was like, “Well, “to pronounce” something. It’s “pronounciation”.” And then, one of my friends looked it up and show me, you know, (they) grabbed the computer, and was like, “Pronunciation*”. And now every time I hear someone make that error it just hits me in the.
Yeah, I mean it is… these kind of little misunderstandings. You know, they’re quite common, I think. And it’s more embarrassing, right, if you’re a native speaker, because you feel like, “I should know that. This’s my language. I should know.
Yeah, well that’s like when you call me out on spelling.
Even when you’re spelling correctly.
Oh man, that got me! So, Christian keeps catching me making spelling mistakes or… on Instagram. And he’ll be like “Wrong! Wrong”. And I’ll just be like, “Damn it!”. I did that too fast. I didn’t check it. I was lazy. And then, he did it yesterday when it was all 100% correct, and I was sitting there for five minutes like, “Oh my God! what have I screwed up? Why can’t I see it?”.
Oh, it was… I’m really sorry about that.
That’s ok. I… you trolled me. You got me. You trolled me well. I was totally like, “I can’t see it! Am I that dumb?!”.
Well, I think that your merch, your merchandise, your t-shirts, and everything, is really cool, and anybody watching you should definitely buy some of Pete’s stuff and support him through buying some of his t-shirts and hoodies, and you can wear them with pride.
See if you can show me. Send me a photo if any of you get it. And I’ll have to get some as well, and start wearing them around the street so that people think I’m learning Australian English.
Well, what about you Christian? Tell us about the podcast and your yawls for that in the near future. What’s the… what’s it called and what’s the aim of the podcast? And how can people find it?
Well, the… I’ve only made one episode so far, and my goal was to… because, sometimes there are things I want to talk about in videos, but too heavy for a video or to, like, long, and a podcast seemed like a perfect place to talk about those things. But, if I’m going to be honest, I think my first podcast was too dry, and it was a little bit too serious, and, you know, I’m not sure if I said all the things I wanted to say.
That’s how it goes. That’s how it goes. You just have to keep (at it. Would’ve… I think, someone… they tell me when I started, they were like, and this is a bit crass, but you guys’ll love it. “Just keep throwing shit at the wall and see what sticks.”. So, it’s a vivid image. Just keep throwing. It doesn’t have to be “shit”. It can be “mud”. Just keep throwing things at the wall and see what sticks to the wall, and just keep, you know, keep doing the good bits that stay. So…
Yeah well, I mean for me, the experience was… ’cause I had to sit in this sort of like a room with lots of blankets to absorb the sound, and I was doing take after take, and, oh, it just wasn’t… It was really frustrating. Super frustrating. And.
That’s the learning experience, though. That’s, you know, starting a new language.
It is! It’s like a new language. There’s no visuals. It’s just voice, and wow. So, I’m hoping that I will improve, you know, over the next 10 or 20 podcasts. I really want to improve my… well everything: delivery, content, everything. So…
I think you just… the way to look at it, and it’s like language learning, it’s almost like, you know, at first you have your first conversation, and you’re like, “Oh, that one’s so bad!”. But you have to look at it like, “How am I going to be after ten conversations, twenty conversation, a hundred conversations?”, and then just go out and have them as soon as possible. And like, get in there, dive in there, make them awful, but then walk away from it with the experience of 10 conversations, 20 conversations, 100 conversations. Just punish it. Punish mate. You’ve got this.
Great advice. I’m sorry Pete, but I have to go, because my battery is going to go flat at any moment.
Man, you(‘ve) got to be MacGyver, mate. You(‘ve) got to always be prepared.
I know. I feel bad about that.
We’ve had some questions in here asking us to make this a podcast. Is there any way I can get the audio off you and we can check this up? We could do, you know, both of us.
You know, I don’t know, ’cause I did a long stream yesterday, and I tried to save the video to my telephone. And it was impossible, and I don’t know why, and I don’t know if I can do it through the Instagram website. I don’t know. But I will try to do something to.
We’ll give it a go.
But, I don’t know if anybody wants to really hear us rambling.
Man, they love this sort of stuff. They love it. They love practising English hearing two people speak at once. That’s the funniest thing I had… A whole bunch of them are just like, “More conversations! Not just one person speaking. You need everyone in there.”. So…
Well, listen, we should definitely do this again soon.
I had a great time chatting to you.
I need to find out what’s wrong with my telephone so that we can do the stream on your account and you could invite me.
Yeah. Just give it a go. See if you can save this one. But worst-case scenario, we’ll just have to catch up again.
Yeah. So, for anybody who doesn’t know, this is Pete from Aussie English, YouTube channel, podcast, courses, everything. The man, the legend, the doctor.
And this is Christian from Canguro English, another Australian. if you guys from my channel, go and follow Christian at, I guess, it’s Canguro English on Facebook, on YouTube, and you don’t have a current web site for the podcast, yet or do you?
No, it’s just on Soundcloud. Yeah, there’s no website.
Soon. It’s in the making, guys. It’s in the making. But if you want access to another Aussie, follow Christian.
Alright, well, it was a pleasure Pete. Speak to you soon my man.
Alright, guys. So, that was an interview with Christian and myself. But Christian from Canguro English. That’s spelt CANGURO ENGLISH. Canguro English, but two words. You can check him out on YouTube, his podcast has come out and it’s on Soundcloud, he also has an Instagram account, and you can see him on Facebook. So, check Cristian out, guys, if you want to learn English from a fellow Australian English teacher, and the links will be in today’s transcript.
Don’t forget guys, if you’d like to support this podcast and maintain it ad-free on the podcast, (to) help me do what I do every week and keep bringing you awesome content, then you can sign up to be a patron via my Patreon page that is PATREON. Just search Aussie English Patreon. You can sign up there and donate as little as a dollar per month to keep the lights on in my house and to keep me bringing new content on a weekly basis just like this.
Aside from that guys, if you want to support the podcast and you want to upgrade your English at the same time, don’t forget to sign up to the Aussie English Classroom. You can try it for one dollar for your first month, for your first 30 days, you can get in there, do courses, do all sorts of lessons and quizzes, interact with other people, and now with the new speaking challenge, every week you can practice making videos and posting them in the Aussie English Facebook group in order to practice your spoken English. Also, you will find a breakdown of between 10 to 15 minutes of today’s interview in the Aussie English classroom that’s designed to focus on teaching you more of the vocab and expressions used in this interview. So, it’s all about reinforcing your English.
Anyway guys, you’ve been awesome. Keep doing what you’re doing and keep levelling up your English and you will only succeed. I look forward to chatting to you in class. See you guys.
Struggling to understand and speak Australian English?
I’ve created the perfect solution.
Each course is a comprehensive English lesson covering these areas:
Success! Now check your email to confirm your subscription.Post Views: 1,260