Paper: Improving Cloze Test Performance of Language Learners Using Web N-Grams

ACL ID C14-1091
Title Improving Cloze Test Performance of Language Learners Using Web N-Grams
Venue International Conference on Computational Linguistics
Session Main Conference
Year 2014
Authors

We study the effectiveness of search engines for common usage, a new category of search engines that exploit n-gram frequencies on the web to measure the commonness of a formulation, and that allow their users to submit wildcard queries about formulation uncertainties often encountered in the process of writing. These search engines help to resolve questions on common prepositions following verbs, common synonyms in given contexts, and word order difficulties, to name only a few. Until now, however, it has never been shown that search engines for common usage have a positive impact on writing performance. Our contribution is a large-scale user study with 121 participants using the Netspeak search engine to shed light on this issue for the first time. Via carefully designed cloze tests we s...