Competitive Grammar Writing

Jason Eisner and Noah A. Smith

Welcome! This page contains instructional materials associated with the following paper:

Jason Eisner and Noah A. Smith. Competitive Grammar Writing. In Proceedings of the ACL Workshop on Issues in Teaching Computational Linguistics, pages 97-105, Columbus, OH, June 2008.

Just as programming is the traditional introduction to computer science, writing grammars by hand is an excellent introduction to many topics in computational linguistics. We present and justify a well-tested introductory activity in which teams of mixed background compete to write probabilistic context-free grammars of English. The exercise brings together symbolic, probabilistic, algorithmic, and experimental issues in a way that is accessible to novices and enjoyable.


Please feel free to send feedback and other links for this page.

jason at cs dot jhu dot edu, nasmith at cs dot cmu dot edu