Questions tagged [language]

Questions concerning the language (e.g., English, French, German, Chinese) of academic publications, presentations, transcripts, or other documents. For questions on style, use 'writing-style' instead.

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23
votes
6answers
4k views

Teaching a very small class when the students have very uneven proficiency levels

How should a teacher and student cope with a situation like this. I've been studying spanish for about a year and enrolled in a successive course. However, the course starts really early and there is ...
10
votes
3answers
1k views

Do non-English papers/publications have value in a CV which is going to be sent to an English company/university?

Some of the students are doing research in another language than English because they are living and studying in a non-English speaking country; they may be doing research in their mother-tongue ...
8
votes
4answers
1k views

How to “work on the essay” as a non-native speaker

We received a report on our paper (it's the 2nd version already). The referee writes: The proofs are correct. However, I'm not completely satisfied with the style in which the paper is written and ...
17
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4answers
1k views

How to state that you “rigorified” an existing paper without sounding arrogant or condescending?

I am writing a paper aimed at a physics journal which extends an old paper (not by me), which introduced a mathematical formalism for a physical problem in a rather handwaving way and without ...
35
votes
7answers
11k views

A lecturer is hard to understand, what to do?

I have a lecturer at university that I find very hard to understand. My lectures are taught in English, but my lecturer is of East Asian origin, and English is not his first language. I find the ...
36
votes
6answers
5k views

Special (non-english) character in name. What to do as author? Internationalize or not?

In German, as well as in other languages, people have Non-English characters in their names. e.g. ß, the umlauts etc.. I frequently face problems when flying, opening bank accounts, etc., ...
19
votes
3answers
2k views

Is there such a thing called native speaker bias when publishing?

This has been a subject that has occupied my thoughts for the past years but haven't really managed to formulate it completely for myself. I have this feeling (and I can't say it's more than a feeling ...
63
votes
8answers
15k views

Why are there so many papers written in bad English?

I am pretty sure that anyone who has spent some time reading academic papers have come across quite a few "lemons" among them, with bad grammar, strange word choices and incoherent sentences. Such ...
35
votes
6answers
7k views

What to do when no one speaks English around you?

Often when I attend conferences and meetings, there are some social activities sometimes specifically for graduate students to mix with each other and get to know other students and build possible ...
25
votes
6answers
3k views

How to improve my English from Academic papers?

I'm not a native speaker. However, I'm doing my PhD in an English country and I read Academic papers which are in English. How can I improve my English from those papers? Any ideas? Although sometimes ...
37
votes
3answers
3k views

Dealing with listening/talking to researchers with difficult accents

Often, when speaking English in research, you can find a great variety of (mostly, non-native) accents. Since I started moving in academic circles and a more international environment, I slowly ...
4
votes
4answers
4k views

Methodology as a Body of Methods?

I'm currently having a hard time understanding if authors are using the word methodology correctly, or if their papers should be classified as BS. Hence, I set out to get a better feeling for the ...
8
votes
3answers
208 views

Are there available corpora of academic works?

There are many different corpora[1] for the English language: Google Books ngram database is freely accessible and covers publications indexed in Google Books from the 16th century; words are tagged ...
8
votes
2answers
941 views

reliable english editor online?

I am encountering some problems for making my research in English, due that this is not my native language. Even though my ideas are crystal clear in my language I find it extremely hard to express ...
7
votes
5answers
1k views

What makes you keep on reading articles in your non-English native language, while the same information might be published in English?

As a future French PhD student (in Computer-Supported Collaborative Learning) that legally HAS TO write his thesis in French, I am a bit concerned about the fact that less people would be able to read ...
3
votes
1answer
200 views

Reference formulas in non-English text books

In a mathematical paper, is it wise to refer to formulas in a non-English (here: German) text book, under the conditions that: the text book is standard in its language region all English text books ...
13
votes
5answers
2k views

in which language should I write my first draft a paper? [duplicate]

This might sound like a silly question, but I am not a native speaker of English, so I find it sometimes difficult to write my first draft in that language. What I usually do is write my first draft ...
6
votes
3answers
410 views

Find out author’s name in foreign writing system (Chinese, etc.)

I have some literature written by Chinese authors who I would like to attribute in my bibliography with their names in Chinese characters (汉字). The problem is that, as the literature itself is not in ...
5
votes
2answers
395 views

How can I find the DOI for an old mathematical paper which is not in English?

(Not sure if this is the right SX site, but math.sx seemed to have no questions concerning DOIs.) Everything I cite in my thesis has a DOI or URL (I think that's important), but I'm citing an article ...
7
votes
3answers
321 views

How to refer to a page number in a pdf?

Many times, the page number in pdf is different than the printed page number. How to make sure the other person doesn't get confused when we say "it's on Nth page".
19
votes
4answers
765 views

How do you thematically include accidental findings (“serendipity”) in a dissertation or paper?

I'm asking for approaches to include interesting, but not perfectly fitting results in a dissertation or a paper. During my PhD project I have made an accidental discovery, which is what I believe ...
19
votes
1answer
3k views

What tense should paper titles use?

I have recently noticed that the tense of paper titles can be somewhat odd. This previous question, In what tense (present/past) should papers be written?, has some great information but it doesn't ...
35
votes
7answers
1k views

Resources on how to overcome writer's block, especially for non-native English speakers?

One of the issues we have at my English-language institute is the problem of getting our doctoral students to write papers in English. For some, writing isn't a big challenge. For others, however, the ...
27
votes
6answers
2k views

How should I deal with a professor whose weak language proficiency is disturbing our paper's writing quality?

I am a first year PhD Student, writing a conference paper with an Italian Professor, very senior and renowned in our field. Every commit he makes to the SVN is riddled with spelling and grammar errors....
15
votes
1answer
302 views

Guidelines for changing terminology introduced by self?

The topics that have been in my research focus recently have problems with consistent naming and terminology through time and papers, so I might perceive it as a greater problem than I would normally, ...
11
votes
4answers
405 views

How to find / understand research in other languages when you don't know that language?

I'm starting to do some research in Asia, however, I don't know the local language. I do have some contacts, all of whom speak English, but I'm worried about finding earlier research which was ...
7
votes
3answers
547 views

Is hiring a proofreader beneficial in the long term?

I am an Early Stage Researcher in a bigger project. I am non-native speaker of English and I find my level of English in my articles not satisfactory, especially when I consider that it is not just my ...
9
votes
1answer
929 views

What are the standard practices for hyphenating/spelling scientific words

I would like to know what are standard practices when words are spelled differently across the literature and/or dictionaries (when these words can be found in dictionaries). A few examples of the ...
20
votes
3answers
2k views

Would it be ethical to hire a proofreader for theses and academic articles?

Proofreading documents for orthography is a pain. I consider that I am decent at writing in my native language (on the grammar and orthography side), but proofreading for typos and whatnots is a time-...
26
votes
3answers
1k views

Is it reasonable to evaluate spelling/grammar in reports for students diagnosed with dyslexia?

Students diagnosed with dyslexia qualify for accommodations at most universities. As with other special needs students, they're entitled extra time for work, exams, access or licenses to spell ...
24
votes
7answers
2k views

Are there some fields where having skills in a language other than English is necessary to perform research at an international level?

When I went to college, an old-schooled teacher of mine insisted that, because I was interested in chemistry, I needed to work on my German as it was the lingua franca of that trade. It turns out, ...
61
votes
2answers
18k views

In what tense (present/past) should papers be written?

That is, should it be present tense or past tense? Should there be a difference between the abstract, main body and the conclusion? Does the field of publication have any impact?
13
votes
3answers
6k views

In conference review process, what do “author response” and “author notification” mean?

I just visited a conference website where organizers, for the submitted paper review process, listed a date for paper submission, a date for "author response", and another date for "author ...
45
votes
5answers
3k views

Writing papers in language X and translating to English vs. writing papers in English to begin with?

I'm working with a group in China, and we were discussing the following question, which I would like to ask here too: Question: Is it better to write a paper in Chinese, then translate it into ...
20
votes
3answers
4k views

Can I use contractions in my thesis?

I am writing my thesis (in Computer Science, if that's relevant) and I am thinking about the style, especially about using contractions. I realize that thesis is a formal text and contractions like “...
42
votes
4answers
3k views

How to find ways to proofread English in papers

As a non-native speaker of English, it can often be hard to spot some of the errors that a native speaker would find. For a long time, I've been thinking about getting a native speaker to help me with ...
26
votes
2answers
9k views

How should references in non-Latin script language be treated in English paper?

Let's say I want to cite a Russian text in my own paper which is written in English. Should I: reference it as is, in the original Cyrillic alphabet, although the readers won't be able even to ...
4
votes
2answers
342 views

How to get into position to teach college Arabic?

I am interested in teaching at the university-level in Arabic. Would teaching arabic in a high-school first(as I have no university-level teaching experience) help me? I currently teach science to ...

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