Contradictions and revisions as explanatory aids in the delivery of technical information

  • Ingrid Zukerman
  • Yee Han Cheong
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 406)


In discourse produced by human speakers, the technical information is often interleaved with rhetorical devices such as contradictions, illustrations and analogies. These rhetorical devices carry important information which assists the listener in assimilating the imparted knowledge. In this paper, we present a taxonomy of rhetorical devices commonly used in a tutoring environment, and model their meaning in terms of their anticipated effect on a listener's knowledge. These predictions are then used in planning computer generated discourse. As a testbed for our ideas, we are implementing a system, called WISHFUL, to generate commentaries in the domain of high-school algebra within the framework of an Intelligent Tutoring System.

Keywords and Phrases

Natural Language Discourse Generation Listener Model Intelligent Tutoring Systems 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ingrid Zukerman
    • 1
  • Yee Han Cheong
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Computer ScienceMonash UniversityClaytonAustralia

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