Unit 12: Australia and New Zealand
Australia and New Zealand have flora and fauna found nowhere else on Earth. Australia is an island, a country, and a continent – the smallest and only "Island Continent". Australia consists of a large mainland and the island of Tasmania to the south. New Zealand has two main islands that are separated from Australia's southeastern region by the Tasman Sea. The Indian Ocean surrounds Australia's western and southern coasts. Indonesia and Papua New Guinea lie to the north, separated by the Timor Sea and the Arafura Sea.
The Gulf of Carpentaria extends to the north along Australia's eastern coast, almost reaching Papua New Guinea. The Great Barrier Reef runs for more than 1,600 miles off the continent's northeastern shores, with the Coral Sea, which separates the Great Barrier Reef from the South Pacific. The southern side of Australia is the Great Australian Bight, and the island of Tasmania. We begin this unit by looking at the region's physical geography, and the effects of colonialism on the environment and the region's Aboriginal peoples. Then, we will explore the region's physical, cultural, political, and economic characteristics.
Completing this unit should take you approximately 1 hour.
MapCheck: Australia and New Zealand
12.1: Introducing Australia and New Zealand
12.3: New Zealand