SIGdial 2012

13th Annual SIGdial Meeting on Discourse and Dialogue

Cohesion, Entrainment and Task Success in Educational Dialog

Diane Litman

Researchers often study dialog corpora to better understand what makes some dialogs more successful than others. In this talk I will examine the relationship between coherence/entrainment and task success, in several types of educational dialog corpora: 1) one-on-one tutoring, where students use dialog to interact with a human tutor in the physics domain, 2) one-on-one tutoring, where students instead interact with a spoken dialog system, and 3) engineering design, where student teams engage in multi-party dialog to complete a group project. I will first introduce several corpus-based measures of both lexical and acousticprosodic dialog cohesion and entrainment, and extend them to handle multi-party conversations. I will then show that the amount of cohesion and/or entrainment positively correlates with measures of educational task success in all of our corpora. Finally, I will discuss how we are using our findings to build better tutorial dialog systems.