Some time ago I put up a question on the SE network. I ended up writing an extensive answer myself and published it in the same question and on my blog. Later, I put a lot more thought into the topic and found additional results, which I did not publish yet.

I have since considered if that question might be usable as a topic for a bachelor thesis.

Disregarding the fact that I would need to convince a professor to accept an existing topic, does the publication of the question and some results in the past prevent this?

  • 1
    Links to the relevant SE question and blog posts would be informative. Mar 14, 2014 at 12:28
  • @FaheemMitha The blog does not exist anymore, its content was mostly the same as in the SE question (stackoverflow.com/q/4239028/39590)
    – mafu
    Mar 16, 2014 at 10:39

2 Answers 2


Posting on SE or on your blog does not count as publishing in the traditional sense (the work has not yet appeared in a scientific journal or conference proceedings). This means that it is unlikely to be a problem. Just make sure you discuss it with your potential supervisor.


This depends on what the institution's goals for a bachelor thesis are.

Some institutions may want evidence that the student is capable of such work; in this case you've already met the requirements. Some institutions want work done in the context of the thesis course; in this case you will need to do additional work, although it may be related to the existing work such as extending and documenting it. Some institutions may want evidence that the student is capable of work-for-hire (i.e. assigned by faculty and not chosen by the student). In this case you will need to do a thesis completely from scratch as chosen by the advisor.

  • This does not seem to be too far off, why was it downvoted?
    – mafu
    Mar 16, 2014 at 10:34
  • Beats me. academia.SE is weird.
    – vadim123
    Mar 16, 2014 at 14:13

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .