How to write a better thesis in English as a non-native speaker

You’re a good writer of German. Now you are facing the challenge of writing your Master’s or Bachelor’s thesis in English. What are some of the things to consider?

1. Keep sentences simple

One of the main differences between writing in English and writing in German is the length of the sentences. English sentences are generally shorter. You may be worried that your writing will end up sounding like that of a five-year-old. Don’t worry; to a native speaker of English it won’t. One idea per sentence is enough. Read over every sentence you write and ask yourself if each sentence is easy to understand. If a sentence isn’t clear, simplify it. Usually the easiest way to simplify a sentence is to shorten it.

2. Do a spell-check

This sounds easy, but you would be amazed at how many people send texts to us without doing a spell-check. You may think that you are not an expert on English spelling and that it is the job of the proofreader. It’s true you’re not an expert, but you don’t have to be to recognise typos and some misspellings. As a proofreader, I always spell-check every text I look at. Therefore, if you miss something, I’ll pick it up. Doing a spell-check will save you money, as it will save us time.

3. Learn and apply the rules of comma use in English

A good way to make your writing clear is to use the correct punctuation. It is not so much a matter of a proofreader trying to catch you out by noticing that you have a put a comma in a spot where it shouldn’t be. Rather, using correct punctuation is another way to make your sentences easier to understand. You may have heard that comma rules are not as strict in English as they are in German. This is true, but it doesn’t mean there are no rules! Learning them will help you.
Click here for further reading on punctuation.

4. Avoid Repetition

It may seem necessary to repeat yourself, but usually it isn’t! If you do feel the need to express an idea more than once, at least choose different words, so your writing does not sound boring to the reader.

If you follow these few simple tips, you will be going a long way towards improving your writing. This helps you and the reader!

proofread your thesis


And now for one last tip. Sometimes another set of eyes will make all the difference to get you over the finishing line successfully. If you believe your thesis would benefit from being proofread by a native speaker of English, feel free to get in contact with the nativespeakers.ch GmbH team. We have had many years of experience giving the finishing touches to theses on a wide range of subjects.
We offer a special student discount of 50% per word! 

For a quote to have your thesis polished, go to the contact page of our website.

We will be happy to help you!