When synonyms are not enough

Optimal parenthetical insertion for text simplification

Yang Gu, Gondy Augusta Leroy, David Kauchak

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

As more patients use the Internet to answer health-related queries, simplifying medical information is becoming increasingly important. To simplify medical terms when synonyms are unavailable, we must add multi-word explanations. Following a data-driven approach, we conducted two user studies to determine the best formulation for adding explanatory content as parenthetical expressions. Study 1 focused on text with a single difficult term (N=260). We examined the effects of different types of text, types of content in parentheses, difficulty of the explanatory content, and position of the term in the sentence on actual difficulty, perceived difficulty, and reading time. We found significant support that enclosing the difficult term in parentheses is best for difficult text and enclosing the explanation in parentheses is best for simple text. Study 2 (N=116) focused on lists with multiple difficult terms. The same interaction is present although statistically insignificant, but parenthetical insertion can still significantly simplify text.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)810-819
Number of pages10
JournalAMIA ... Annual Symposium proceedings. AMIA Symposium
Volume2017
StatePublished - Jan 1 2017

Fingerprint

Internet
Reading
Health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

Cite this

When synonyms are not enough : Optimal parenthetical insertion for text simplification. / Gu, Yang; Leroy, Gondy Augusta; Kauchak, David.

In: AMIA ... Annual Symposium proceedings. AMIA Symposium, Vol. 2017, 01.01.2017, p. 810-819.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{5b4ab893fda848b2a992ddb5e2eeea04,
title = "When synonyms are not enough: Optimal parenthetical insertion for text simplification",
abstract = "As more patients use the Internet to answer health-related queries, simplifying medical information is becoming increasingly important. To simplify medical terms when synonyms are unavailable, we must add multi-word explanations. Following a data-driven approach, we conducted two user studies to determine the best formulation for adding explanatory content as parenthetical expressions. Study 1 focused on text with a single difficult term (N=260). We examined the effects of different types of text, types of content in parentheses, difficulty of the explanatory content, and position of the term in the sentence on actual difficulty, perceived difficulty, and reading time. We found significant support that enclosing the difficult term in parentheses is best for difficult text and enclosing the explanation in parentheses is best for simple text. Study 2 (N=116) focused on lists with multiple difficult terms. The same interaction is present although statistically insignificant, but parenthetical insertion can still significantly simplify text.",
author = "Yang Gu and Leroy, {Gondy Augusta} and David Kauchak",
year = "2017",
month = "1",
day = "1",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "2017",
pages = "810--819",
journal = "AMIA ... Annual Symposium proceedings / AMIA Symposium. AMIA Symposium",
issn = "1559-4076",
publisher = "American Medical Informatics Association",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - When synonyms are not enough

T2 - Optimal parenthetical insertion for text simplification

AU - Gu, Yang

AU - Leroy, Gondy Augusta

AU - Kauchak, David

PY - 2017/1/1

Y1 - 2017/1/1

N2 - As more patients use the Internet to answer health-related queries, simplifying medical information is becoming increasingly important. To simplify medical terms when synonyms are unavailable, we must add multi-word explanations. Following a data-driven approach, we conducted two user studies to determine the best formulation for adding explanatory content as parenthetical expressions. Study 1 focused on text with a single difficult term (N=260). We examined the effects of different types of text, types of content in parentheses, difficulty of the explanatory content, and position of the term in the sentence on actual difficulty, perceived difficulty, and reading time. We found significant support that enclosing the difficult term in parentheses is best for difficult text and enclosing the explanation in parentheses is best for simple text. Study 2 (N=116) focused on lists with multiple difficult terms. The same interaction is present although statistically insignificant, but parenthetical insertion can still significantly simplify text.

AB - As more patients use the Internet to answer health-related queries, simplifying medical information is becoming increasingly important. To simplify medical terms when synonyms are unavailable, we must add multi-word explanations. Following a data-driven approach, we conducted two user studies to determine the best formulation for adding explanatory content as parenthetical expressions. Study 1 focused on text with a single difficult term (N=260). We examined the effects of different types of text, types of content in parentheses, difficulty of the explanatory content, and position of the term in the sentence on actual difficulty, perceived difficulty, and reading time. We found significant support that enclosing the difficult term in parentheses is best for difficult text and enclosing the explanation in parentheses is best for simple text. Study 2 (N=116) focused on lists with multiple difficult terms. The same interaction is present although statistically insignificant, but parenthetical insertion can still significantly simplify text.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85058744205&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=85058744205&partnerID=8YFLogxK

M3 - Article

VL - 2017

SP - 810

EP - 819

JO - AMIA ... Annual Symposium proceedings / AMIA Symposium. AMIA Symposium

JF - AMIA ... Annual Symposium proceedings / AMIA Symposium. AMIA Symposium

SN - 1559-4076

ER -