research report      name index      key word index      corresp.unit            Page in german      Imprint + Privacy Policy   

Third-party-funded project

computer aided training of text comprehension

Project management at the University of Würzburg:

Participating scientists:


The main source of knowledge for students are texts, i.e. students mainly learn by reading. It has long been noticed that summarizing improves text comprehension processes and by this the efficiency of learning from texts. To this end a computational aided system is being developed, that assists by writing of summaries in German language.

The system uses Latent Semantic Analysis (LSA), a computational model of word and documents similarities. LSA analyzes the co-occurrence of words in huge corpora and generates a high-dimensional vector space in which single words, sentences and even paragraphs are commonly represented by corresponding vectors. Thus, the vector of a word (or a document) represents its co-occurrence with all other words (documents). Accordingly, the vectors can be regarded as representing the meaning of words and paragraphs at least to the extent to which the meaning of a text is determined by its use.

The project aims at creating semantic vector spaces for German corpora in different subjects in order to use them for a tutorial program for writing summaries. Our work strongly profits from close cooperation with the LSA research group and the Summary Street project at the University of Colorado, Boulder (Profs. Eileen & Walter Kintsch) as well as from cooperation with Profs. Sandra Jean La-Rose and Guy Denhière (Paris).

Key words:
    text comprehension

Projekt period: from 09.2005 to 08.2007

Funding institution:
DFG ,Granting date: 28.06.2005