I'm studying in Polish language. One of my courses was named "Metody otrzymywania nanomateriałów". Which roughly translates into "Methods for obtaining nanomaterials". However in my official transcript of record, this course is named "methods of receiving nanomaterials".

Is receiving equal to obtaining? And if no, how would recruiting stuff on the foreign university react to such error?

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    "methods of receiving nanomaterials" sounds like a translation error. That's how it would be perceived. That's not really the question you're asking, is it? The question you're asking is whether you should complain about the error and ask that they correct it. Personally, I think you should ask for a correction. By asking for one, you wouldn't just be helping yourself, but you might be helping future students who need the same course name translated. That being said, there is no guarantee that you'll receive a correction, and if you don't receive one, I probably wouldn't press the issue. Commented May 4, 2016 at 20:07
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    You also always have the option of sending an email to the university you apply to saying "As a side note, a better translation of XX is YY." Everyone understands that translation errors happen, and in your case it's not like you're trying to hide something, or make something look better. Commented May 4, 2016 at 21:34
  • I agree with @WolfgangBangerth about sending an email with a correct translation. If the transcript doesn't include the original Polish name of the course, you might include that in your email too. Then the people reading your transcript and email can have some Polish-speaking person verify that your translation is correct. I assume that a typical university would have a faculty member who can speak (or at least read) Polish. Commented May 5, 2016 at 21:36
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    @StephanBranczyk If the situation in Poland is similar to that in Czechia, changing the translation is close to impossible and possibly illegal. I learned to live with it, for instance my official diploma supplement (printing on special paper provided by the government, with a huge stamp and several signatures) contains "Master's Thesis" at one place and "Diploma Thesis" at another place, both actually being "Master's degree project" correctly. Or, one subject's translation (as I found out just now) is completely wrong: "Research project" instead of "Winter School in Mathematical Physics."
    – yo'
    Commented Jun 4, 2016 at 9:51

1 Answer 1


While the translation is clearly suspect, the only time this is likely to come up is if you are trying to meet a prerequisite at another institution. In that case, what is of interest is whether you've already passed studies of the same material. If you have the related degree, that should be clear. If it comes down to a course-by-course analysis of your record, the title of a course anyway doesn't suffice to answer this question: the two syllabi are compared by some rubric.

You needn't do anything unless you are asked to demonstate a course equivalency.

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