Language Resources and Evaluation

, Volume 49, Issue 3, pp 659–683 | Cite as

CityU corpus of essay drafts of English language learners: a corpus of textual revision in second language writing

  • John Lee
  • Chak Yan Yeung
  • Amir Zeldes
  • Marc Reznicek
  • Anke Lüdeling
  • Jonathan Webster
Original Paper


Learner corpora consist of texts produced by non-native speakers. In addition to these texts, some learner corpora also contain error annotations, which can reveal common errors made by language learners, and provide training material for automatic error correction. We present a novel type of error-annotated learner corpus containing sequences of revised essay drafts written by non-native speakers of English. Sentences in these drafts are annotated with comments by language tutors, and are aligned to sentences in subsequent drafts. We describe the compilation process of our corpus, present its encoding in TEI XML, and report agreement levels on the error annotations. Further, we demonstrate the potential of the corpus to facilitate research on textual revision in L2 writing, by conducting a case study on verb tenses using ANNIS, a corpus search and visualization platform.


Learner corpus Textual revision Feedback English as a second language Multi-layer corpus annotation Corpus search and visualization 



The work described in this article was supported by a grant from the Germany / Hong Kong Joint Research Scheme sponsored by the Research Grants Council of Hong Kong and the German Academic Exchange Service (Reference No. G_HK013/11).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • John Lee
    • 1
  • Chak Yan Yeung
    • 1
  • Amir Zeldes
    • 2
  • Marc Reznicek
    • 3
  • Anke Lüdeling
    • 4
  • Jonathan Webster
    • 1
  1. 1.City University of Hong KongKowloonHong Kong
  2. 2.Georgetown UniversityWashingtonUSA
  3. 3.Universidad Complutense de MadridMadridSpain
  4. 4.Humboldt-Universität zu BerlinBerlinGermany

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