The Role of Utterance Boundaries and Word Frequencies for Part-of-speech Learning in Brazilian Portuguese Through Distributional Analysis

Pablo Picasso Feliciano de Faria


Abstract
In this study, we address the problem of part-of-speech (or syntactic category) learning during language acquisition through distributional analysis of utterances. A model based on Redington et al.’s (1998) distributional learner is used to investigate the informativeness of distributional information in Brazilian Portuguese (BP). The data provided to the learner comes from two publicly available corpora of child directed speech. We present preliminary results from two experiments. The first one investigates the effects of different assumptions about utterance boundaries when presenting the input data to the learner. The second experiment compares the learner’s performance when counting contextual words’ frequencies versus just acknowledging their co-occurrence with a given target word. In general, our results indicate that explicit boundaries are more informative, frequencies are important, and that distributional information is useful to the child as a source of categorial information. These results are in accordance with Redington et al.’s findings for English.
Anthology ID:
W19-2917
Volume:
Proceedings of the Workshop on Cognitive Modeling and Computational Linguistics
Month:
June
Year:
2019
Address:
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Venue:
CMCL
SIG:
Publisher:
Association for Computational Linguistics
Note:
Pages:
152–159
Language:
URL:
https://aclanthology.org/W19-2917
DOI:
10.18653/v1/W19-2917
Bibkey:
Cite (ACL):
Pablo Picasso Feliciano de Faria. 2019. The Role of Utterance Boundaries and Word Frequencies for Part-of-speech Learning in Brazilian Portuguese Through Distributional Analysis. In Proceedings of the Workshop on Cognitive Modeling and Computational Linguistics, pages 152–159, Minneapolis, Minnesota. Association for Computational Linguistics.
Cite (Informal):
The Role of Utterance Boundaries and Word Frequencies for Part-of-speech Learning in Brazilian Portuguese Through Distributional Analysis (Feliciano de Faria, CMCL 2019)
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PDF:
https://aclanthology.org/W19-2917.pdf