This course on the use of simulations for studying language behavior may vary in focus, e.g. focusing one year on the acquisition of (one of) phonology, morphology or syntax, or another year on sentence processing and lexical access, or on the (social) diffusion of linguistic variation. The intention is that students familiarize themselves with the area under study in a given year, and thereby with the more general opportunities and limitations on the use of simulations in scientific inquiry.
This year's focus will be on simulating language acquisition in general, with an excursion to simulating language change. We will particularly focus on early word learning and segmentation. Students are encouraged to suggest areas of language behavior they are interested in as topics of discussion during this course.
Instructors:Çağrı Çöltekin & John Nerbonne
After completing this course, students should understand the use of simulations in cognitive sciences, be familiar with the modeling and simulation work in the area of language acquisition, and be able to (critically) read the recent research in the field.
RequirementsThe course assumes familiarity with basic concepts of machine learning, but there will be time to review occasionally unfamiliar concepts as well. The course is aimed at students in research masters' programs, which assumes serious motivation and scientific maturity.
|Feb 15||Introduction & organization||Coltekin (2011, chapter 2&3)||C.Coltekin (slides)|
|Feb 22||Computational simulation of language acquisition||Coltekin (2011, chapter 5)||C.Coltekin (slides)|
|Feb 29||Pronoun comprehension
Rij et al. (2009)
|J. van Rij
|Mar 7||Simulation of segmentation (1)||Christiansen et al. (1998); Goldwater et al. (2009)||C. Hoogwerf
|Mar 14||Simulation of segmentation (2)||Venkataraman (2001)
Goldwater et al. (2009)
|Mar 20||Language change/diffusion
| Holman et al. (2007)
|| L. Szabó
|Mar 21||Simulation of sentence processing &
| Brouwer et al. (2010)
Johnson & Goldwater (2009)
|Mar 27||Learning grammar & meaning||Xu & Tenenbaum (2007)
Klein & Manning (2004)
|Mar 28||Project presentations|
Borschinger, B. and Johnson, M. (2011). A particle filter algorithm for Bayesian wordsegmentation. In Proceedings of the Australasian Language Technology Association Workshop 2011, pages 10–18, Canberra, Australia.
Johnson, M. and Goldwater, S. (2009). Improving nonparameteric Bayesian inference: experiments on unsupervised word segmentation with adaptor grammars. In Proceedings of Human Language Technologies: The 2009 Annual Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics, pages 317–325.
Yao, X., Ma, J., Duarte, S., and Çağrı Çöltekin (2009). An inference-rules based categorial grammar learner for simulating language acquisition. In Proceedings of the 18th Annual Belgian-Dutch Conference on Machine Learning, Tilburg.
Office hours: TBA