Uppsala universitet  

Natural Language Processing, 15 HP, HT 2016

Syllabus: 5LN710
Course coordinator and examiner: Joakim Nivre
Teachers: Joakim Nivre, Fabienne Cap, Miryam De Lhoneux


  • We added a schedule for the survey presentations on January 10th. Please note that we start 9:00 sharp!
  • Here is a link about the cheating policy at Uppsala University (as of 2016-12-15).
  • An overview of all survey topics chosen can be found here
  • Your survey will be graded based on the written report.
    The presentation may improve your grade but it cannot make the grade worse.
  • Please use nlp-course@stp.lingfil.uu.se to contact us!
  • Details on the survey of an application area have been added.


1 8/11 10-12 Chomsky Introduction A0 A1 Joakim Nivre J&M 1
2 10/11 10-12 Chomsky Basic text processing Fabienne Cap J&M 2
3 15/11 10-12 Chomsky Probability and statistics Fabienne Cap Goldsmith
4 16/11 15-17 Chomsky Language modelling Joakim Nivre J&M 4
5 22/11 10-12 Chomsky Part-of-speech tagging Joakim Nivre J&M 5
6 24/11 10-12 Chomsky Hidden markov models Joakim Nivre J&M 6
7 29/11 10-12 Chomsky Morphological analysis Fabienne Cap J&M 3
8 1/12 10-12 Chomsky Syntax and parsing Miryam de Lhoneux J&M 12-13
9 6/12 10-12 Chomsky Constituency parsing Miryam de Lhoneux J&M 14
10 8/12 10-12 Chomsky Dependency parsing Joakim Nivre KM&N
11 13/12 10-12 Chomsky Lexical semantics Fabienne Cap J&M 19-20
12 15/12 10-12 Chomsky Compositional semantics Fabienne Cap J&M 17-18
13 10/1 9-16 Chomsky schedule

Class Preparation

The course is organized according to the "flipped classroom" model, where students watch videolectures outside the classroom and work actively on solving problems in the classroom. In order for this model to work, it is essential that students come prepared to classroom, having watched the relevant lectures and read the relevant literature in advance. We use the Scalable Learning platform for videolectures (and a few other things), so make sure to create a user account and sign up for the course using the enrollment key handed out by the teacher.


The course is examined by means of in-class assignments that are submitted once a week. In addition, students will survey an application area and present the result both orally and in writing.

Participation in classes is mandatory and students are required to watch the lectures before each class. More than 20% absence may result in additional assignments.

In order to pass the course, the students must complete all assignments (including the oral and written presentation of the survey). In order to get pass with distinction (VG), at least half of the assignments have to meet the criteria for distinction.

Survey of an Application Area

General Information

As part of your examination, you will survey an NLP application area and present the results both orally and in writing.
In order to summarize the application area, you can either:

• summarize 2-3 recent research papers
• summarize the respective chapter in the course book (see Reading List below) and 1-2 recent research papers.

We expect most papers to be recent, say, not older than 2010, but there are also papers that are older without being outdated.
If you are unsure and want to summarize an older paper, please contact us briefly via nlp-course@stp.lingfil.uu.se.
In order to find recent research papers, the following links might be useful:

Submission Details

Please submit your survey proposal (a .pdf file containing your name and the topic you chose) and .pdfs of the 2-3 research papers via Studentportalen.

Some more detailed guidelines of the format for the final survey (not the proposal) can be found here.

The final survey should consist of 3-5 pages preferably written in LaTeX, but other formats will also be accepted (as long as the submission has been transformed to .pdf).

The survey will be graded based on the written report. The presentation may improve your grade, but it cannot make it worse

Important Dates

The deadlines for this survey are as follows:

  •   1. December, 20:00h: Submit your research proposal and upload 2-3 papers you are going to summarize.
  •   8. January, 20:00h: Submit a first version of your slides (via Studentportalen).
  •   9. January, 24:00h: Submit the final version of your slides (via Studentportalen).
  • 10. January, 9:00h-16:00h: Oral presentation.
  • 10. January, 20:00h: Term paper due (via Studentportalen).

Reading List

  • J&M = Daniel Jurafsky and James H. Martin. Speech and Language Processing: An Introduction to Natural Language Processing, Computational Linguistics, and Speech Recognition. Second Edition. Pearson Education. 2009.
  • KM&N = Sandra Kübler, Ryan McDonald and Joakim Nivre. Dependency Parsing. Morgan and Claypool. 2009. (Electronic edition)
  • Goldsmith = John Goldsmith. Probability for linguists. University of Chicago. 2007.