Appel: EACL 2012 Workshop on Computational Models of Language Acquisition and Loss

Thierry Hamon thierry.hamon at UNIV-PARIS13.FR
Sun Dec 18 14:25:09 UTC 2011

Date: Fri, 16 Dec 2011 19:14:32 +0100
From: Thierry Poibeau <thierry.poibeau at>
Message-Id: <AD40EDBB-7ABC-4FD6-AF71-17CC5D2E2843 at>

                First Call for Papers

                EACL 2012 Workshop on
Computational Models of Language Acquisition and Loss

Deadline for Submissions: January, 20th, 2012


The past decades have seen a massive expansion in the application of
statistical and machine learning methods to speech and natural language
processing. This work has yielded impressive results which have
generally been viewed as engineering achievements. Recently researchers
have begun to investigate the relevance of computational learning
methods for research on human language acquisition and loss.

The human ability to acquire and process language has long attracted
interest and generated much debate due to the apparent ease with which
such a complex and dynamic system is learnt and used on the face of
ambiguity, noise and uncertainty. On the other hand, changes in language
abilities during aging and eventual losses related to conditions such as
Alzheimer's disease and dementia have also attracted considerable
investigative efforts. Parallels between the acquisition and loss have
been raised, and a better understanding of the mechanisms involved in
both, and of how the algorithms used to access concepts are affected in
pathological cases can lead to earlier diagnosis and more targeted

The use of computational modeling is a relatively recent trend boosted
by advances in machine learning techniques, and the availability of
resources like corpora of child and child-directed sentences, and data
from psycholinguistic tasks by normal and pathological groups. Many of
the existing computational models attempt to study language tasks under
cognitively plausible criteria (such as memory and processing
limitations that humans face), and to explain the developmental stages
observed in the acquisition and evolution of the language abilities.

The workshop is targeted at anyone interested in the relevance of
computational techniques for understanding first, second and bilingual
language acquisition and change or loss in normal and pathological
conditions. Long and short papers are invited on, but not limited to,
the following topics:

* Computational learning theory and analysis of language learning

* Computational models of first, second and bilingual language

* Computational models of language changes in e.g. dementia and
  Alzheimer?s Disease

* Computational models and analysis of factors that influence language
  acquisition and loss in different age groups and cultures

* Computational models of various aspects of language and their
  interaction in acquisition and change

* Computational models of the evolution of language

* Data resources and tools for investigating computational models of
  human language processes

* Empirical and theoretical comparisons of the environment and its
  impact on acquisition/loss

* Cognitively oriented Bayesian models of language processes

* Computational methods for acquiring various linguistic information
  (related to e.g. speech, lexicon, syntax, and semantics) and their
  relevance to research on human language acquisition

* Investigations and comparisons of supervised, unsupervised and
  weakly-supervised methods for learning (e.g. machine learning,
  statistical, symbolic, biologically-inspired, active learning, various
  hybrid models)


We invite three different submission modalities:

 * Regular long papers (8 content pages + 1 page for references): Long
   papers should report on solid and finished research including new
   experimental results, resources and/or techniques.

 * Regular short papers (4 content pages + 1 page for references): Short
   papers should report on small experiments, focused contributions,
   ongoing research, negative results and/or philosophical discussion.

 * System demonstration (2 pages): System demonstration papers should
   describe and document the demonstrated system or resources. We
   encourage the demonstration of both early research prototypes and
   mature systems, that will be presented in a separate demo session.

All submissions must be in PDF format and must follow the EACL 2012
formatting requirements (available at  We strongly
advise the use of the provided Word or LaTeX template files. For long
and short papers, the reported research should be substantially
original. The papers will be presented orally or as posters. The
decision as to which paper will be presented orally and which as poster
will be made by the program committee based on the nature rather than on
the quality of the work.

Reviewing will be double-blind, and thus no author information should be
included in the papers; self-reference should be avoided as well. Papers
that do not conform to these requirements will be rejected without
review. Accepted papers will appear in the workshop proceedings, where
no distinction will be made between papers presented orally or as

Submission and reviewing will be electronic, managed by the START

Submissions must be uploaded onto the START system by the submission

  January 20, 2012 (11:59pm Samoa Time; UTC/GMT -11 hours)

Please chose the appropriate submission type from the starting
submission page, according to the category of your paper.


Jan 20, 2012    Paper submission deadline
Feb 20, 2012    Notification of acceptance
Mar 09, 2012    Camera-ready deadline
Apr 23 or 24, 2012      Workshop


Afra Alishahi, Tilburg University (Netherlands)
Colin J Bannard, University of Texas at Austin (USA)
Marco Baroni, University of Trento (Italy)
Jim Blevins, University of Cambridge (UK)
Rens Bod, University of Amsterdam (Netherlands)
Antal van den Bosch, Tilburg University (Netherlands)
Alexander Clark,  Royal Holloway, University of London (UK)
Robin Clark, University of Pennsylvania (USA)
Matthew W. Crocker, Saarland University (Germany)
James Cussens, University of York (UK)
Walter Daelemans, University of Antwerp (Belgium) and Tilburg University (Netherlands)
Barry Devereux, University of Cambridge (UK)
Sonja Eisenbeiss, University of Essex (UK)
Afsaneh Fazly, University of Toronto (Canada)
Cynthia Fisher, University of Illinois (USA)
Jeroen Geertzen, University of Cambridge (UK)
Henriette Hendriks, University of Cambridge (UK)
Marco Idiart, Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul (Brazil)
Aravind Joshi, University of Pennsylvania (USA)
Shalom Lappin, King's College London (UK)
Alessandro Lenci, University of Pisa (Italy)
Igor Malioutov, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (USA)
Marie-Catherine de Marneffe, Stanford University (USA)
Fanny Meunier, Lumière Lyon 2 University (France)
Brian Murphy, Carnegie Mellon University (USA)
Maria Alice Parente, Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul (Brazil)
Massimo Poesio, University of Essex (UK)
Brechtje Post, University of Cambridge (UK)
Ari Rappoport, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem (Israel)
Dan Roth, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (USA)
Kenji Sagae, University of Southern California (USA)
Sabine Schulte im Walde, University of Stuttgart (Germany)
Ekaterina Shutova, University of Cambridge (UK)
Maity Siqueira, Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul (Brazil)
Mark Steedman, University of Edinburgh (UK)
Shuly Wintner, University of Haifa (Israel)
Charles Yang, University of Pennsylvania (USA)
Beracah Yankama, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (USA)
Menno van Zaanen, Macquarie University (Australia)
Michael Zock, LIF, CNRS,  Marseille (France)


Robert Berwick, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (USA)
Anna Korhonen, University of Cambridge (UK)
Thierry Poibeau, LaTTiCe-CNRS (France) and University of Cambridge (UK)
Aline Villavicencio, Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul (Brazil)
   and Massachussets Institute of Technology (USA)

For any inquiries regarding the workshop please send an email
to cognitivemodels2012 at

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