To an Australian, “g’day mate” is known as a genuine and friendly greeting, suitable for anytime of the day.
To a migrant, it can be a different story.
Around 190,000 permanent migration places will be available in Australia this financial year and many will struggle with local accents and slang.
Most migrants think Australian accents are harder to interpret. Their accent is very broad and it can be difficult to understand.
To overcome that language barrier, the Mount Isa City Council Library is running conversational language classes. The teachers at the Library concentrate on the conversation side and cover slang because accent is a very important part of understanding everyday conversations. The most common is g’day mate, because when Australians say it quickly, people have no idea what we’re saying.
Only a few classes show a huge difference. The students write essays that the teacher look at or read them in class. It is all about boosting the confidence of the migrants and they show amazing progresses.