Is it necessary that the sources always be in the English language? Under what conditions is it valid to answer questions from non-English sources?

It is a question that I have for a long time, I have always assumed that it is valid, for example if it is a very precise data of a very unusual investigation, but on the other hand somehow I have always forced myself to find the materials in English language. We should specify certain situations because I think I have not been able to be as specific as I would like in some answers.

So: Should the questioners be asked if they want a data from a source in another language? Should I always deal with a translation in addition to the response? In the latter case should I translate the entire document?

  • 2
    I would definitely encourage use of accessible literature, i.e., English, which is the norm in science. However, German literature is quite prominent too, for example in Chemistry and I think as well in Psychology. Spanish, Chinese and Indian sources are pretty inaccessible to those who don't know it, so I would discourage those, even when acknowledging when they make up about half of all folks on this planet.
    – AliceD Mod
    Jul 27, 2017 at 19:33
  • I agree with AliceD. But, if you can only find a Spanish /Chinese source, I would accept such a source of you could translate the abstract so that it is clear what the paper was about specifically. Aug 1, 2017 at 14:49


You must log in to answer this question.

Browse other questions tagged .