AAAI Publications, Twenty-Fourth International FLAIRS Conference

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A Linguistic Analysis of Student-Generated Paraphrases
Vasile Rus, Shi Feng, Russell Brandon, Scott Crossley, Danielle S. McNamara

Last modified: 2011-03-20

Abstract


Paraphrase identification is a core Natural Language Processing task that involves assessing the semantic similarity of two texts. To foster systematic studies of this task, standardized datasets were created on which various approaches could be compared more fairly. However, a better understanding and more precise operational definition of a paraphrase are needed before any further datasets or systematic evaluations of the task of paraphrase identification are proposed. This study develops the concept of paraphrasing as a writing strategy. Six types of paraphrases are defined through the creation of a relatively large corpus of student-generated paraphrases. These paraphrases are analyzed along several dozen linguistic dimensions ranging from cohesion to lexical diversity. The most significant indices from these dimensions were then used to build a prediction model that could identify true and false paraphrases and each of the six paraphrase types.

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