When Stephanie Wenclawski (21) from North Carolina State University discovered that she could find out about ancient Noongar culture at The University of Western Australia, she couldn't wait to enrol.
And she's not alone.
There are record enrolments in UWA's Albany Centre's Knowing Country: the Dreaming and Darwin unit, which is also highly popular at the University's Crawley campus. In total, the unit has attracted almost 500 students.
"Indigenous Australians, local, national and international students want to learn about Noongar science and knowledge and compare it to western science and knowledge in a world biodiversity global hot-spot," said UWA's School of Indigenous Studies Professor Leonard Collard.
"Many of the students who've enrolled in Knowing Country: the Dreaming and Darwin did so because of having enjoyed studying another UWA unit, Aboriginal Encounters: Strangers in Our Back Yard," said Research Associate Jennifer Buchanan.
Knowing Country: the Dreaming and Darwin was developed by the University's School of Indigenous Studies and Centre of Excellence in Natural Resource Management (CENRM). It includes three field trips, from 29 September to 5 October, which will enable the Crawley and Albany students to meet.
They will all stay at Camp Quaranup on Vancouver Bay - the old Quarantine Station - and will learn about the natural environment from Minang Noongar custodians and experts as well as CENRM scientists.
The students will also hear ancient stories about Dog Rock and Mt Clarence; will go to Vancouver Bay to learn about tool-making, Oyster Harbour to see Noongar fishing traps, and Frenchman's Bay and the Gap to see waterholes and learn about Noongar knowledge of the coastline.
Stephanie said: "I'd recommend this unit to all exchange students because you get the chance to learn from a different cultural perspective and to learn about where you are in the world. There is so much history here and Aboriginal people have so much knowledge to share."
Professor Leonard Collard (UWA School of Indigenous Studies) (+61 8) 6488 7422 / (+61 4) 07 981 863
Jennifer Buchanan (UWA School of Indigenous Studies) (+61 8) 6488 6925 / (+61 4) 88 919 454
Associate Professor Barbara Cook (UWA CENRM Albany) (+61 8) 9842 0837
David Stacey (UWA Media Manager) (+61 8) 6488 3229 / (+61 4) 32 637 716