MSU event advances interdisciplinary research on computing and human language

Michigan State University is hosting the Midwest Computational Linguistics Colloquium (MCLC), an event that brings together researchers across the fields of computer science, theoretical linguistics, and cognitive science more generally.

Phd Student Matt Gerber
CSE PhD student Matt Gerber is one of four MSU students
presenting research at MCLC.
Photo courtesy of the Great Lakes IT Report

"The varied research topics represented at the MCLC reflect a campus-wide strength in cognitive science," says John Hale, assistant professor of linguistics who holds an adjunct appointment in computer science.

The Department of Computer Science and Engineering and the Department of Linguistics and Germanic, Slavic, Asian, and African Languages are hosting the event.

MCLC will be held May 10-11 in room 2400 of the MSU Engineering Building. Faculty and students from ten different universities will present their new research results. The organizers expect to draw 70-80 people. Registration is free and open to the public.

"The program includes eighteen presentations on a wide range of topics related to computational linguistics, natural language processing, and language driven human computer interaction," says Joyce Chai, associate professor of computer science and engineering.

"MSU is a natural venue for this kind of meeting," says Hale. "The Midwest is a hotbed for computational work on human language. We’re keen at MSU to foster the kinds of discussions that connect research groups across the region."

MSU’s strength in interdisciplinary research is echoed in the diversity of the campus units supporting the event. The College of Engineering, the MSU Cognitive Science Program, the computer science and engineering department, and the linguistics department are all sponsoring the colloquium.

Chai and Hale are program co-chairs for MCLC. Chai leads the MSU Language and Interaction Research Group (LAIR) and Hale is director of the MSU Computational Linguistics Laboratory. They both have PhD students who will be presenting their work at the colloquium.

Hale says anyone interested in languages, computers, artificial intelligence, cognitive science, information retrieval, or machine translation should attend. "We are keen to share the excitement of MCLC 2008 with the rest of the MSU community."

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MSU research featured at the Midwest Computational Linguistics Colloquium

Marisa Ferrara Boston and Zhong Chen
Multilingual Feature Selection for a Human Sentence Processing Model

Shaolin Qu and Joyce Y. Chai
Speech-Gaze Temporal Alignment for Automatic Word Acquisition in Multimodal Conversational Systems

Matt Gerber and Joyce Chai
Class-based Nominal Semantic Role Labeling: a Preliminary Investigation

(Date Posted: 2008-05-08)