The Writing-Pal: Natural Language Algorithms to Support Intelligent Tutoring on Writing Strategies

The Writing-Pal: Natural Language Algorithms to Support Intelligent Tutoring on Writing Strategies

Danielle S. McNamara (Arizona State University, USA), Roxanne Raine (The University of Memphis, USA), Rod Roscoe (Arizona State University, USA), Scott A. Crossley (Georgia State University, USA), G. Tanner Jackson (Arizona State University, USA), Jianmin Dai (Arizona State University, USA), Zhiqiang Cai (The University of Memphis, USA), Adam Renner (The University of Memphis, USA), Russell Brandon (Arizona State University, USA), Jennifer L. Weston (Arizona State University, USA), Kyle Dempsey (Mississippi University for Women, USA), Diana Carney (The University of Memphis, USA), Susan Sullivan (The University of Memphis, USA), Loel Kim (The University of Memphis, USA), Vasile Rus (The University of Memphis, USA), Randy Floyd (The University of Memphis, USA), Philip M. McCarthy (The University of Memphis, USA) and Arthur C. Graesser (The University of Memphis, USA)
Copyright: © 2014 |Pages: 14
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-4502-8.ch045
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Abstract

The Writing-Pal (W-Pal) is an intelligent tutoring system (ITS) that provides writing strategy instruction to high school students and entering college students. One unique quality of W-Pal is that it provides feedback to students’ natural language input. Thus, much of our focus during the W-Pal project has been on Applied Natural Language Processing (ANLP). This chapter describes W-Pal and various NLP projects geared toward providing automated feedback to students’ writing during writing strategy training and practice.
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An Overview Of W-Pal

W-Pal consists of two principle components: Strategy Training and Essay Writing. The Strategy Training Component includes lessons that correspond to the three phases of the writing process: Prewriting, Drafting, and Revising. Training modules are provided for strategies that facilitate each phase of writing. Prewriting modules include Freewriting, and Planning. Drafting strategies include

  • Introduction Building

  • Body Building, and

  • Conclusion Building.

The revising strategies include

  • Paraphrasing,

  • Cohesion Building, and

  • Overall Revising of the text.

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