I am translating a typical French master diploma into English. The translation will be certified, so I am trying to use the proper terms.

I loosely take "Vu le code de l'éducation" and "Vu le décret" to mean "Given the laws on education", and "Given the decree", respectively. Is my English appropriate?

Here is an example of the context in French:

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Corresponding text:

Ministère de l'Éducation nationale, de l'Enseignement supérieur et de la Recherche.
Université Paris-Dauphine
Vu le code de l'éducation; 
Vu le décret n ° 84-573 du 5 juillet 1984 modifié relatif aux diplômes nationaux de l'enseignement supérieur; 
Vu le décret n ° 2002-481 du 8 avril 2002 relatif aux grades et titres universitaires et aux diplômes nationaux; 
Vu le décret n ° 2002-604 du 25 avril 2002 modifiant le décret n ° 99-747 du 30 août 1999 relatif à la création du grade de master; 
Vu l'arrêté du 25 avril 2002 relatif au diplôme national de master; 
Vu l'arrêté ministériel du 30 septembre 2005 relatif à l'habilitation de l'université Lyon 2 à délivrer des diplômes nationaux; 
Vu les pièces justificatives produites par M. Lin LI, né le 10 avril 1979 à ZUWHOU, en vue de son inscription au master; 
Vu les procès-verbaux du jury attestant que l'intéressé à satisfait au contrôle des connaissances et des aptitudes prévu par les textes réglementaires; 
Le diplôme de Licence XXX, mention XXX, 
Mention XXX 
est délivré à Mr. XXX
au titre de l'année universitaire 2007-2008 
et confère le grade de Licence 
pour en jouir avec les droits et prérogatives qui y sont attachés. 

Fait à Paris, le 22 octobre 2008 
Le président 
Laurent Batsch

Le recteur d'académie, chancelier des universités 
Maurice Quénet
le titulaire 
N ° 

Ce document est imprimé sur du papier filigrané avec des encres réactives et ne peut être ni gommé ni raturé. 
Il est affecté d'un numéro dont vous pouvez vérifier l'exactitude auprès du Service Diffusion de l'Imprimerie Nationale: 03 27 93 70 84

What I have found so far:

  • this forum post advises to use "With regard to the code of education"
  • this forum post advises to use "Having regard to the Education Code".
  • this forum post advises to use "In view of the decree".

Which is the best option, is there any better?

As a side note, according to this forum post written by Keith Bradford:

The Council of Europe legal dictionary gives:

  • Arrêté = order, decree, regulation, decision, notice
  • Décret = (governmental or presidential) decree or order, regulations
  • Décret-loi = legislative decree (enacted by the government under the authority of an Act and having the effect of an Act, i.e. modifying existing legislation)
  • Ordonnance = order (certain provisional orders of a legislative nature made by the government...; certain orders made by a single judge...)

So if you have several in the same document and need to distinguish between them, I can only suggest:

  • Arrêté = decision / notice
  • Décret = (governmental or presidential) decree
  • Décret-loi = legislative decree
  • Ordonnance = order

so I luckily don't have any issue regarding the translation of arrêté and décret.

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  • Off the top of my head "In light of"; but I'd really like to know what matrix clause this chain of phrases ends in: what action by whom is being justified. – StoneyB on hiatus Feb 20 '16 at 5:08
  • @StoneyB Thanks, sure I added the end of the sentence. It basically says "The diploma X is granted to Mr Y." – Franck Dernoncourt Feb 20 '16 at 5:11

We don't do stuffy things quite this way in English; our stock pattern is

Whereas [sentence]
And whereas [sentence]
And whereas [sentence]
Now therefore [sentence]

But the French prefatories are all objects of vu, and don't suit well with whereas.

The best equivalent for vu I can come up with is in consideration of; but I don't much like repeating that with each justification. An adequately archaic and plonking treatment might be:

  imprimis, [the provisions of] the Education Code
  item, [the provisions of] Decree 84-573 of July 5, 1984, respecting National Diplomas in Higher
  item, [the provisions of] Decree 2002-481 of July 5, 1984, respecting University Degrees and
          Titles, and National Diplomas
NOW THEREFORE the diploma in __ is conferred upon M.__ for the academic year 2007-2008, &c

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EU laws always have, in the initial section known as 'recitals' (considérants in French), having regard to where the French has "vu" - this is always followed by reference to a legal text on the basis of which the order, decree, (or diploma) is issued.

Whereas is used in recitals to introduce a phrase that defines a given situation.


Having regard to the Treaty establishing the European Community


Whereas: (1)) Increased public access to environmental information and the dissemination of such information contribute to a greater awareness of environmental matters

You don't have to follow the style established for EU laws when translating national laws, of course, but it certainly offers a good standard option.

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