Australia is Changing, says Census

July 24, 2012

Unlocking Word Meanings
Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

1. landscape (n.) 
[land-skeyp] – the main appearance or feature of a  certain activity
Example: The arrival of people from overseas in recent years has changed the nation’s cultural landscape.

2. census (n.) [sen-suhs] – the counting of people in a country, city or specific area and the recording of information about them
Example: We learned that around 22 million people live in Australia because a census was done last year.

3. prosper (v.) [pros-per] – to be successful, especially in the financial sense
Example: The country is prospering due to its booming mining industry.

4. migrate (v.) [mahy-greyt] – to move from one location and go to another
Example: He left the small town and migrated to the city to look for a good job.

5. multiculturalism (n.) [muhl-tee-kuhl-cher-uh-liz-uhm,muhl-tahy-] – the idea that the presence of different cultures in a society should be supported
Example: The Australian government, a supporter of multiculturalism, makes policies to protect citizens of different cultural backgrounds.

Read the text below.

According to a census by the Australian Bureau of Statistics, Australia’s social and economic landscape is changing because of the large number of people migrating to the country. 

The recent boom in the country’s mining industry has helped Australians prosper during a time of global economic crisis. The industry has also created plenty of mining jobs and has led to increased Australian exports to other countries, most of which go to countries in Asia.

The census also showed that more people are migrating from India and China, Australia’s biggest trading partners. Instead of Italian, Mandarin Chinese is now the second most common language used at home.

Meanwhile, religious views in the country are increasing in variety. Hinduism is the fastest-growing religion in the country because of migration from India. Furthermore, the number of Australians recognizing themselves to be Muslims has increased by 40%. More Australians than ever also claim to practice no religion of any kind.

Victor Dominello, the New South Wales minister for citizenship and multiculturalism, says that Australia is really becoming a multicultural nation. In the state of New South Wales alone, he says, 40% of citizens have at least one parent who was born in another country.

However, Dominello reminds that multiculturalism in the country means not just a greater presence of many cultures, but many cultures adapting to Australian values, laws and ways of life.

Viewpoint Discussion
Enjoy a discussion with your tutor. 

Discussion A

·         In what ways do you think your country or culture has changed because of foreign peoples?
·         Can a country still keep its national identity even if a lot of foreigners move there, or would its national identity also change? Why do you say so?

Discussion B

·         Do you think there is an advantage to experience or learn about other cultures of the world? What makes you say so?
·         What about your culture would you like to share to people from other countries?


July 24, 2012