AAAI Publications, Twenty-Second International FLAIRS Conference

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Automatic Text Categorization of Mathematical Word Problems
Suleyman Cetintas, Luo Si, Yan Ping Xin, Dake Zhang, Joo Young Park

Last modified: 2009-03-16


This paper describes a novel application of text categorization for mathematical word problems, namely Multiplicative Compare and Equal Group problems. The empirical results and analysis show that common text processing techniques such as stopword removal and stemming should be selectively used. It is highly beneficial not to remove stopwords and not to do stemming. Part of speech tagging should also be used to distinguish words in discriminative parts of speech from the non-discriminative parts of speech which not only fail to help but even mislead the categorization decision for mathematical word problems. An SVM classifier with these selectively used text processing techniques outperforms an SVM classifier with a default setting of text processing techniques (i.e. stopword removal and stemming). Furthermore, a probabilistic meta classifier is proposed to combine the weighted results of two SVM classifiers with different word problem representations generated by different text preprocessing techniques. The empirical results show that the probabilistic meta classifier further improves the categorization accuracy.

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