Identifying Weak Sentences in student drafts: A tutoring system

Samuel González López, Steven Bethard, Aurelio López-López

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


The first draft of an undergraduate student thesis generally presents deficiencies, which must be polished with the help of the academic advisor to get an acceptable document. However, this task is repeated every time a student prepares his thesis, becoming extra time spent by the advisor. Our work seeks to help the student improve the writing, based on intelligent tutoring and natural language processing techniques. For the current study, we focus primarily on the conclusions section of a thesis. In this paper we present three tutoring system components: Identifying Weak Sentences, Classifying the Weak Sentences, Customizing Feedback to Students. Our system identifies weaknesses in sentences, such as the use of general instead of specific terms, or the absence of reflections and personal opinions. We provide initial models and their evaluations for each component.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)77-85
Number of pages9
JournalAdvances in Intelligent Systems and Computing
StatePublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Conclusion evaluation
  • Thesis drafts
  • Weak sentences

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Computer Science(all)


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