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The Intricacies of Language When Publishing Academic Studies in Quebec

Publishing studies in Quebec is a tricky situation to navigate for a number of reasons. Your research may be top notch, and your findings might be revolutionary. However, unless you are able to overcome the challenges presented by Quebec’s language laws, as well as the broader world of academia, then you may find that your research doesn’t quite get the reach and impact that you feel it deserves. This is true regardless of whether you are an anglophone or francophone researcher. Once you understand the challenges that you will face, you’ll come to realize the importance of professional translation services no matter what language you decide to publish your study in.

Challenges Facing Francophone Researchers

Francophone researchers have a greater set of challenges to overcome than their anglophone counterparts. In today’s academic world, the pretty much have to publish their research in English because it is widely considered to be the worldwide lingua franca. This is evidenced by the fact that academic publications in languages other than English are often excluded from the most prestigious journal indexes. This means that their research is much less likely to be cited in future research and gain traction within the academic world. In fact, researchers at Université Laval found that political science research that was published in English was cited an average of three times as often as research that was published in French.


This isn’t a new phenomenon either. Back in 1980, 70% of academic articles in Quebec were already being published in English, and that proportion now sits above 90%. Now, imagine being a French-speaking researcher who doesn’t know how to write in English. How are they going to get their research published and noticed in the world of academia if they can’t translate their research and jump through the hoops set by the very society that they are a part of. Professional translation services are the only option here.


Even if the researcher is able to write in English, is their translation going to keep the original messaging, or will parts get lost in translation? In the academic publication world, accuracy is everything, and if the message and findings lose their accuracy and impact because of improper translation, then they run the risk of having their research rejected by the publication. Again, professional translation services are the only option to ensure the research retains its integrity.

Challenges Facing Anglophone Researchers

With English being the lingua franca of academic publications, English-speaking researchers certainly do not have the same set of challenges that francophone researchers have. Unlike in the commercial space in Quebec, academic publications do not need to be published in French according to the Charter of the French Language.


There is one area of academic publication that does need to be considered as an English-speaking researcher, and that is the use of research to teach French-speaking students. Only McGill University, Concordia University, and Bishop’s University in Quebec are considered anglophone universities. Even then, the Charter of the French Language gives every French-speaking student the fundamental right to instruction in French, unless the understanding of a different language is the core purpose of the course. The three anglophone universities in Quebec are not excluded from this requirement. In order to comply this right, any research that will be presented to students for the purpose of teaching will need to be accurately translated to French in order to be considered good teaching material.


Regardless of whether the anglophone researcher is able to write in French or not, they will face the very same pitfalls as a francophone researcher who is translating their research to English. The only way to avoid them is through professional translation services.

Professional Translation Ensures Optimal Publishing Outcomes

A professional translator, like the team at 5 Star Translation can provide accurate, and effective translation services for any research publication. We understand the nuances of academic writing and can make sure that the core message of your research isn’t lost in translation. If you are looking to have your research translated, trust us to handle it quickly, and professionally. Contact us today!