I'm currently applying to several PhD programs in the STEM sector in Europe. Some universities invite me to submit my bachelor's thesis as an optional document for my application. I would like to do that because the thesis can give some insight about my background, even if it wasn't about anything new and it wasn't published.

Problem is, my thesis was written in a language different from English. Does it make sense if I translate it into English and send both the original and the translation for the application?

The thesis is less than 30 pages long and it would be quick to translate. However, I wonder if it is common practice and if it will be considered by a potential committee.

  • 3
    If it really won't take you much time, then I say go for it. What have you got to lose? Just make sure you state that you have translated it yourself from X language. Commented Nov 4, 2020 at 14:59
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    What language? If it's common enough, it might not be worth bothering. Commented Nov 4, 2020 at 23:22

2 Answers 2


Yes I would translate it.

Some pros:

  • It helps you demonstrate your capabilities in research;
  • It may help you demonstrate your knowledge of the subject matter in your field if relevant;
  • It demonstrates that you are oriented toward communicating the findings of your research, which is a graduate capability they are looking to develop anyway; and
  • It shows initiative.

Some cons:

  • Its too expensive to translate;
  • Its too technical to translate;
  • You think your application would be stronger without it!

These are the only cons I can think of...and my guess is based on what you have said that the pros definitely outweigh the cons :-)

  • 2
    OP's English seems good, but another point to consider is that a translation with very broken English may cast a worse light that no translation at all. Commented Apr 17, 2021 at 19:48

In some countries and universities, if you want to write your thesis in another language you must submit your proposal (for master and Ph.D.) in that language beforehand, or at least at the time of defense, you must have your thesis written in that language to present it to the referees to check.

If you don't have these limitations (if you are not banned by the university), it would be a good idea to translate it. In the worst case, the host university won't accept it! As you mentioned, your thesis is not long. So you won't lose time by doing it. In case you consider your research valuable, there is no negative point when it is allowed by the university. This work can even show your eagerness and your try.

But make sure of the correctness and accuracy of the translation.

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