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From corpus-based collocation frequencies to readability measure

Anagnostou, N.K. and Weir, G.R.S. (2006) From corpus-based collocation frequencies to readability measure. In: ICT in the Analysis, Teaching and Learning of Languages, Preprints of the ICTATLL Workshop 2006, 2006-08-21 - 2006-08-22.

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Abstract

This paper provides a broad overview of three separate but related areas of research. Firstly, corpus linguistics is a growing discipline that applies analytical results from large language corpora to a wide variety of problems in linguistics and related disciplines. Secondly, readability research, as the name suggests, seeks to understand what makes texts more or less comprehensible to readers, and aims to apply this understanding to issues such as text rating and matching of texts to readers. Thirdly, collocation is a language feature that occurs when particular words are used frequently together for other than purely grammatical reasons. The intersection of these three aspects provides the basis for on-going research within the Department of Computer and Information Sciences at the University of Strathclyde and is the motivation for this overview. Specifically, we aim through analysis of collocation frequencies in major corpora, to afford valuable insight on the content of texts, which we believe will, in turn, provide a novel basis for estimating text readability.