Minutes of the 4th working group meeting

Soesterberg, January 8-10, 1998.

Present at the meeting: Bill Black, Antal van den Bosch, Julia Lavid López, Paul Mc Kevitt, Karel Oliva, Koenraad de Smedt (chair), Andy Way.

Note: ACO*HUM would like to express its thanks to Gerrit Bloothooft of the TNP on Speech Communication Sciences for the practical organization of the meeting.

Approval of the minutes

The minutes of the 3rd meeting are approved.


The draft outline for a book on advanced computing in the humanities, and in particular a chapter in it about computational linguistics, was discussed and adjusted. Writing tasks are distributed as follows: The draft for the questionnaire was discussed and adjusted. Koenraad de Smedt will work out the questionnaire and put it on the web. Tasks for gathering addresses are distributed as follows: The time plan is as follows:

Internet-based teaching 1: ELSNET pilots

The ELSNET sponsored pilots will be evaluated and this evaluation will be included in the publication (see above).  Three CL-related pilots are under construction and close to completion:
  1. The pilot in which Bill Black, Andy Way and Koenraad de Smedt are involved, is presented in some detail. This project is expected to finish in the spring of 1999.  It currently has two components which will be linked:
  2. Another course, coordinated by Joakim Nivre, deals with Statistical NLP.
  3. A third course, coordinated by Felisa Verdejo, deals with NLP in information retrieval.
The CALL group in the TNP on Speech Communication Sciences will offer suggestions for evaluation.

Internet-based teaching 2: EACL workshop

For the EACL '99 conference in Bergen, Mike Rosner has proposed the following workshop on Saturday, June 12, 1999.  The working group will be involved in the committee and in presentations.



We now have the technology to deliver course components, if not complete courses, over the internet. The advantages of internet delivery in general are obvious: limitless multimedia resources, asynchronous patterns of connection, access to world expertise, styles of interaction ranging from student-centered, resource-oriented
teaching to interactive virtual classroom discussions and demonstrations -- and more.  Less clear are

(a) the particular areas of language/speech technology (LST) education that are well suited to internet delivery (as opposed to other media such as CD Rom).

(b) the nature of course materials/authorware that are available or that need to be developed to support teaching within these areas.

(c) the design of pedagogical systems (i.e. curricula/course management) for LST within which the internet might play a substantial role.

The main aims of the workshop are to provide a forum for the presentation of internet-ready LST materials (i.e. courses, tools, resources, components), and to initiate some reflection on the above issues.  Contributions in the following sub-areas are welcomed:

SUBTOPICS [provisional]

* Online Components for LST
* Authorware  (tools supporting production of LST course materials)
* Curriculum Design
* Course Management


Mike Rosner, University of Malta, Malta (coordinator)
Doug Arnold (Essex)
Maria Wolters (Bonn)
Mark Huckvale (London)
Chris Bowerman (Sunderland)
Anders Erikkson (Umea)

EXPECTED No. of Participants: 20-40

Contacts between this working group and the TNP on Speech Communication Sciences.

Current trends in curriculum innovation and in research and development suggest that a tighter cooperation between the two network projects is desirable. The fields of spoken language engineering, multimodal interfaces, dialogue and multilinguality have a need for such cooperation.  Ways of cooperating should concentrate on curricula, resources, infrastructure and the transfer of research findings to teaching. Special attention should be paid to harmonization of terminology and other ways of making the communities meet.

A possible 4th year extension could be a joint effort aimed at dissemination in Natural Language and Speech, exploring a pan-European dimension.

Under the successor to the current SOCRATES programme, a new joint proposal for a network in Human Language and Speech Technologies must seriously be considered, with CL as a working group or subproject.

Minutes written by Koenraad de Smedt, Jan. 23, 1999.