Steven Coyne


Template-guided Grammatical Error Feedback Comment Generation
Steven Coyne
Proceedings of the 17th Conference of the European Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Student Research Workshop

Writing is an important element of language learning, and an increasing amount of learner writing is taking place in online environments. Teachers can provide valuable feedback by commenting on learner text. However, providing relevant feedback for every issue for every student can be time-consuming. To address this, we turn to the NLP subfield of feedback comment generation, the task of automatically generating explanatory notes for learner text with the goal of enhancing learning outcomes. However, freely-generated comments may mix multiple topics seen in the training data or even give misleading advice. In this thesis proposal, we seek to address these issues by categorizing comments and constraining the outputs of noisy classes. We describe an annotation scheme for feedback comment corpora using comment topics with a broader scope than existing typologies focused on error correction. We outline plans for experiments in grouping and clustering, replacing particularly diverse categories with modular templates, and comparing the generation results of using different linguistic features and model architectures with the original dataset versus the newly annotated one. This paper presents the first two years (the master’s component) of a research project for a five-year combined master’s and Ph.D program.