Australia Research

by Derek Wu and Anthony King


We live in Australia, a unique and fascinating continent.
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Core Information


Australia is a country. A country is an expanse of land, a nation with its own government. Australia is part of the continent known as Australasia. It has 6 states and 2 territories. They are New South Wales, ACT, Victoria, Tasmania, South Australia, Western Australia, the Northern Territory and Queensland.

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Australia is located on the planet Earth. It can be found in the Southern Hemisphere, just south of the Equator, in the continent Oceania (Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands). Australia’s neighbouring countries include New Zealand, Papua New Guinea and Indonesia. The waters that surround Australia are the Arafura and Timor Seas to the north and the Indian Ocean to the west. To the east of Australia are the Pacific Ocean and the Coral Sea and to the south of Australia are the Southern Ocean and the Great Australian Bight.

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The population of Australia is estimated to be 24,151,300 people who can be divided into approximately 12,000,000 males and 12,000,000 females. The largest city in Australia is Sydney, New South Wales with an approximate population of 4,627,345 people which will grow by 1,600,000 people in the next 20 years. There are approximately 200 birthplaces. Most of the population is Australian-born. 2% of the population come from Indigenous backgrounds.

43% have at least one parent who has born overseas. 30% of the population were born in another country. The major countries of the births of Australians from overseas are England, New Zealand and China. Collectively, Australians speak over 200 languages. Other than English the most common languages are Chinese, Italian, Greek and Arabic.

Over 50 Indigenous languages are spoken. The major or most common religion in Australia is Christianity. Other major religions include Buddhism, Islam, Hinduism and Judaism. 7,361 Australians practise Aboriginal traditional religions. 22% of the Australian population have no religion.

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Australia's 24 million people.


Australia is a large country with a varied climate. It has 4 seasons. Summer lasts from December to February of the following year, autumn lasts from March to May, winter lasts from June to August and spring from September to November. In the North of Australia, there are only two seasons; the wet and dry seasons. In Far North Queensland including the Gold Coast and eastern NSW, the area is sunny most of the time. It snows only on the mountains. Australia’s temperatures can reach 45 degrees Celsius in the area around Adelaide, Darwin or in Far North Queensland. Our lowest temperature is negative-5 degrees Celsius in the Snowy Mountains/South West Slopes Region.

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Australia is the sixth largest country in the world covering around 12,000,000 square-kilometres. Its ocean territory is the world's third largest, spanning three oceans; the Pacific, Indian and Southern Oceans. Australia’s environments include: rainforest/tropical, bushland, desert, reef, coastal, beach, and mountainous-type environments.

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More than 80 percent of our plants, mammals, reptiles and frogs are unique to Australia. Native marsupials like koalas, kangaroos and many others can be found nowhere else in the world. Australia’s two egg laying mammals, the platypus and the echidna are the only monotremes in the world. Other unique animals are the emu, dingo and the frilled-neck lizard.


91 percent of Australia is covered by native vegetation. Many of Australia's desert landscapes are covered by native plants. Australia has a staggering amount of 24,000 species of native plants. Eucalypt species include the gum tree, Grevillea species include the Banksia and Melaleuca species include the paperbark.

Significant Sites

Significant sites of Australia include Uluru, (biggest monolith in the world and in Australia) the Sydney Harbour Bridge (largest single-span suspension bridge in the world) and Opera House, Kakadu, the 12 Apostles, the Daintree Rainforest, Australia’s Parliament House (our national legislation building), the Three Sisters, Bondi Beach, the Great Barrier Reef, the Blue, Snowy and Cradle Mountains, Barangaroo and Sydney Harbour.

Interesting Facts

Other facts about Australia are:

-Australia is the driest inhabited country/island in the world

-Australia is the world’s biggest island

-Australia is the only country to be isolated from another country

-Australia is home to the Great Barrier Reef, the world’s largest natural coral reef which stretches 12,000 kilometres from Far North Queensland southward along the Australian Eastern Coast to South East Queensland, Brisbane and Gold Coast and the Queensland-New South Wales border

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Secondary Information

Indigenous Australians

Indigenous Australians are the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people of Australia, descended from groups that existed in Australia and surrounding islands prior to European colonisation. The earliest definite human remains found in Australia are those of Mungo Man, which have been dated at about 40,000 years old, although the time of arrival of the first Indigenous Australians is a matter of debate among researchers, with estimates dating back as far as 125,000 years.

There is great diversity among different Indigenous communities and societies in Australia, each with its own mixture of cultures, customs and languages. In present-day Australia these groups are further divided into local communities. At the time of initial European settlement, over 250 languages were spoken; it is currently estimated that 120 to 145 of these remain in use, but only 13 of these are not considered endangered.

Aboriginal people today mostly speak English, with Aboriginal phrases and words being added to create Australian Aboriginal English (which also has a tangible influence of Indigenous languages in the phonology and grammatical structure). The population of Indigenous Australians at the time of permanent European settlement has been estimated at between 318,000 and 1,000,000 with the distribution being similar to that of the current Australian population, with the majority living in the south-east, centred along the Murray River.

Since 1995, the Australian Aboriginal Flag and the Torres Strait Islander Flag have been among the official flags of Australia.


Since 1788, the primary influence behind Australian culture has been Anglo-Celtic Western culture, with some Indigenous influence. The divergence and evolution that has occurred in the ensuing centuries has resulted in a distinctive Australian culture. Since the mid-20th century, American popular culture has strongly influenced Australia, particularly through television and cinema. Other cultural influences come from neighbouring Asian countries, and through large-scale immigration from non-English-speaking nations.

Australian literature grew slowly in the decades following European settlement though Indigenous oral traditions, many of which have since been recorded in writing, are much older. 19th-century writers such as Henry Lawson and Banjo Paterson captured the experience of the bush using a distinctive Australian vocabulary. Their works are still very popular; Paterson's bush poem "Waltzing Matilda" (1895) is regarded as Australia's unofficial national anthem. Miles Franklin is the namesake of Australia's most prestigious literary prize, awarded annually to the best novel about Australian life. Its first recipient, Patrick White, went on to win the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1973. Australian winners of the Booker Prize include Peter Carey, Thomas Keneally and Richard Flanagan. Author David Malouf, playwright David Williamson and poet Les Murray are also renowned literary figures.

Most Indigenous Australian tribal groups subsisted on a simple hunter-gatherer diet of native fauna and flora, otherwise called bush tucker. The first settlers introduced British food to the continent, much of which is now considered typical Australian food, such as the Sunday roast. Multicultural immigration transformed Australian cuisine; post-World War II European migrants, particularly from the Mediterranean, helped to build a thriving Australian coffee culture, and the influence of Asian cultures has led to Australian variants of their staple foods, such as the Chinese-inspired dim sim and Chiko Roll. Vegemite, pavlova, lamingtons and meat pies are regarded as iconic Australian foods. Australian wine is produced mainly in the southern, cooler parts of the country.

Culture - Sport and Recreation

About 24% of Australians over the age of 15 regularly participate in organised sporting activities. At an international level, Australia has excelled at cricket, field hockey, netball, rugby league, swimming and rugby union. The majority of Australians live within the coastal zone, making the beach a popular recreation spot and an integral part of the nation's identity.

Water Sports

Australia is a powerhouse in water-based sports, such as kayaking, canoeing, swimming and surfing. The surf lifesaving movement originated in Australia, and the volunteer lifesaver is one of the country's icons. Nationally, other popular sports include Australian rules football, horse racing, basketball, surfing, soccer, and motor racing. The annual Melbourne Cup horse race and the Sydney to Hobart yacht race attract intense interest.

Olympic Games and Football

Australia is one of five nations to have participated in every Summer Olympics of the modern era, and has hosted the Games twice: 1956 in Melbourne and 2000 in Sydney. Australia has also participated in every Commonwealth Games, hosting the event in 1938, 1962, 1982, 2006 and will host the 2018 Commonwealth Games. Australia made its inaugural appearance at the Pacific Games in 2015. As well as being a regular FIFA World Cup participant, Australia has won the OFC Nations Cup four times and the AFC Asian Cup once – the only country to have won championships in two different FIFA confederations. The country regularly competes among the world elite basketball teams as it is among the global top three teams in terms of qualifications to the Basketball Tournament at the Summer Olympics.

Other Sports

Other major international events held in Australia include the Australian Open tennis grand slam tournament, international cricket matches, and the Australian Formula One Grand Prix. The highest-rating television programs include sports telecasts such as the Summer Olympics, FIFA World Cup, The Ashes, Rugby League State of Origin, and the grand finals of the National Rugby League and Australian Football League. Skiing in Australia began in the 1860s and snow sports take place in the Australian Alps and parts of Tasmania.

Australian and New Zealand Army Corps

The Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) was a First World War army corps of the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force. It was formed in Egypt in December 1914, and operated during the Battle of Gallipoli. General William Birdwood commanded the corps, which comprised troops from the First Australian Imperial Force and 1st New Zealand Expeditionary Force. The corps disbanded in 1916, following the Allied evacuation of the Gallipoli peninsula and the formation of I ANZAC Corps and II ANZAC Corps. The Corps was reestablished, briefly, in the Second World War during the Battle of Greece in 1942.

Original Formation

Plans for the formation began in November 1914 while the first contingent of Australian and New Zealand troops were still in convoy bound for, as they thought, Europe. However, following the experiences of the Canadian Expeditionary Force encamped on Salisbury Plain, it was decided not to subject the Australians and New Zealanders to the English winter and so they were diverted to Egypt for training before moving on to the Western Front in France.

The British Secretary of State for War, Horatio Kitchener, appointed General William Birdwood, an officer of the British Indian Army, to the command of the corps and he furnished most of the corps staff from the Indian Army as well. Birdwood arrived in Cairo on 21 December 1914 to assume command of the corps.

World War II

During World War II, the Australian I Corps HQ moved to Greece in April 1941. As the corps also controlled the New Zealand 2nd Division (along with Greek and British formations), it was officially renamed ANZAC Corps in April.

The Battle of Greece was over in weeks and the corps HQ left Greece on 23–24 April, with the name ANZAC Corps no longer being used.

Some troops evacuated to Alexandria, but the majority were sent to Crete to reinforce its garrison against an expected air and sea German invasion. Australians and New Zealanders were respectively deployed around the cities of Rethymno and Chania in western Crete with a smaller Australian force being positioned in Heraklion.

The invasion began the morning of 20 May and, after the fierce Battle of Crete, which lasted ten days, Crete fell to the Germans. Most of the defenders of Chania withdrew across the island to the south coast and were evacuated by the Royal Navy from Sfakia. Many others evaded capture for several months, hiding in the mountains with generous assistance from the local Cretan population.

Sydney 2000 Summer Olympic Games Information

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The bid logo of Sydney 2000 Olympic/Paralympic Games/Olympic/Paralympic Games of the XXVIIth Olympiad.

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The official logo of Sydney 2000 Olympic Games/Olympic Games of the XXVIIth Olympiad.

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The official logo of Sydney 2000 Paralympic Games/Paralympic Games of the XXVIIth Olympiad.

Sydney 2000 Summer Olympic Games Introduction

The 2000 Summer Olympic Games (French: Les Jeux olympiques d'été de 2000), officially known as the Games of the XXVII Olympiad and commonly known as Sydney 2000 or the Millennium Olympic Games/Games of the New Millennium, were an international multi-sport event which was held between 15 September and 1 October 2000 in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. It was the second time that the Summer Olympics were held in Australia, and also the Southern Hemisphere, the first being in Melbourne, Victoria, in 1956.

Sydney was selected as the host city for the 2000 games in 1993. Teams from 199 countries participated. The United States won the most medals with 93, while Australia came in 4th with 58. The games cost was estimated to be A$6.6 billion. The Games received universal acclaim, with the organisation, volunteers, sportsmanship and Australian public being lauded in the international media. Bill Bryson from The Times called the Sydney Games "one of the most successful events on the world stage", saying that they "couldn't be better".

James Mossop of the Electronic Telegraph called the Games in an article "such a success that any city considering bidding for future Olympics must be wondering how it can reach the standards set by Sydney", while Jack Todd in the Montreal Gazette suggested that the "IOC should quit while it's ahead. Admit there can never be a better Olympic Games, and be done with it", as "Sydney was both exceptional and the best".

In preparing for the 2012 Olympic Games in London, Lord Coe declared the Sydney Games the "benchmark for the spirit of the Games, unquestionably" and admitting that the London organising committee "attempted in a number of ways to emulate what [the Sydney organising committee] did." These were the final Olympic Games under the IOC presidency of Juan Antonio Samaranch. These were also the second Olympic Games to be held in spring.

Sydney 2000 Opening and Closing Ceremonies

The Opening Ceremony of the 2000 Summer Olympic games took place on Friday 15 September in Stadium Australia. As mandated by the Olympic Charter, the proceedings combined the formal and ceremonial opening of this international sporting event, including welcoming speeches, hoisting of the flags and the parade of athletes, with an artistic spectacle to showcase the host nation’s culture and history. For Sydney 2000, the Games were formally opened by Governor-General Sir William Deane.

The ceremony was described by IOC President Juan Antonio Samaranch as the most beautiful ceremony the world has ever seen. It also represented several highlights of Australian culture and history, from sea creatures and flora/fauna to lawn mowers and other Australian cultural icons. The Opening Ceremony had a cast of 12,687 people who took part in the ceremony. Consistent with normal major production management, the music was pre-recorded under studio conditions to ensure its quality.

The Closing Ceremony took place on 1 October 2000 in Stadium Australia. The Closing Ceremony attracted 114,714 people, the largest attendance in modern Olympic Games history. IOC President Juan Antonio Samaranch declared that the 2000 Olympic games were best Olympic Games ever.

Sydney 2000 Opening Ceremony
The Games Of The XXVIIth Olympiad - Sydney 2000: Closing Ceremony

Sydney 2000 Venues

In Sydney (Olympic Park):

  • Olympic Stadium: Ceremonies (opening/closing), Athletics, Football (final)
  • Sydney International Aquatic Centre: Diving, Modern Pentathlon (swimming) Swimming, Synchronised Swimming, Water Polo (medal events)
  • State Sports Centre: Table Tennis, Taekwondo
  • NSW Tennis Centre: Tennis
  • State Hockey Centre: Field Hockey
  • The Dome and Exhibition Complex: Badminton, Basketball, Gymnastics (rhythmic), Handball (final), Modern Pentathlon (fencing, shooting), Volleyball (indoor)
  • Sydney SuperDome: Gymnastics (artistic, trampoline), Basketball (final)
  • Sydney Baseball Stadium: Baseball, Modern Pentathlon (riding, running)
  • Sydney International Archery Park: Archery

In Sydney:

  • Dunc Gray Velodrome
  • Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre: Boxing, Fencing, Judo, Weightlifting, Wrestling
  • Sydney Entertainment Centre: Volleyball (indoor final)
  • Dunc Gray Velodrome: Cycling (track)
  • Sydney International Shooting Centre: Shooting
  • Sydney International Equestrian Centre: Equestrian
  • Sydney International Regatta Centre: Rowing, Canoeing (sprint)
  • Blacktown Olympic Centre: Baseball, Softball
  • Western Sydney Parklands: Cycling (mountain biking)
  • Ryde Aquatic Leisure Centre: Water Polo
  • Penrith Whitewater Stadium: Canoeing (slalom)
  • Bondi Beach: Volleyball (beach)
  • Sydney Football Stadium: Football
  • Olympic Sailing Shore Base: Sailing
  • Centennial Parklands: Cycling (road)
  • Marathon course: Athletics (marathon)
  • North Sydney: Athletics (marathon start)
  • Sydney Opera House: Triathlon
Outside Sydney:
  • Canberra Stadium, Canberra: Football
  • Hindmarsh Stadium, Adelaide: Football
  • Melbourne Cricket Ground: Football
  • The Gabba: Football

Sydney 2000 Event Timeline

Days -1 & -2

The football matches start with preliminary matches before the Opening Ceremony.

Results - Days -1 & -2

13 September 2000

Nigeria 3-3 Honduras

Hindmarsh Stadium, Adelaide, SA

Other Content

Australia National Anthem (with lyrics)

Lyrics for Australian National Anthem

Australians all let us rejoice,

For we are young and free;

We've golden soil and wealth for toil;

Our home is girt by sea;

Our land abounds in nature's gifts

Of beauty rich and rare;

In history's page, let every stage

Advance Australia Fair.

In joyful strains then let us sing,

Advance Australia Fair.

Beneath our radiant Southern Cross

We'll toil with hearts and hands;

To make this Commonwealth of ours

Renowned of all the lands;

For those who've come across the seas

We've boundless plains to share;

With courage let us all combine

To Advance Australia Fair.

In joyful strains then let us sing,

Advance Australia Fair.

Australia: a place, a sensation (full documentary)
Watch this video about Australia!


Australia Presentation

Click here to see a presentation on Australia!

More Info

Click here to find more info about Australia!

Click here to see the history of Australia!