Can You Predict Responses to Yes/no Questions? Yes, No, and Stuff

Beth Ann Hockey, Deborah Rossen-Knill, Beverly Spejewski, Matthew Stone, Stephen Isard

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review

Abstract

We analyze what functions as a YES response and a NO response for different yes/no questions. This problem is surprisingly complex: respondents do not always produce overt yes or no lexical items in response to a yes/no question. In addition, when respondents don't include a clear yes or no word, they may mean to communicate a clear YES or NO meaning, or something else. We find that the classification of yes/no questions described in (Carletta et al., 1995) for the Edinburgh map task corpus correlates well with whether a response will be a bare yes or no, a yes or no plus additional speech, or just speech without an overt yes or no. Correlation with responses described simply as as “direct” or “indirect” is less good. We also find that, under the three-way categorization, the strength of a question's expectation for a YES response predicts the form of the response.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages2267-2270
Number of pages4
StatePublished - 1997
Externally publishedYes
Event5th European Conference on Speech Communication and Technology, EUROSPEECH 1997 - Rhodes, Greece
Duration: Sep 22 1997Sep 25 1997

Conference

Conference5th European Conference on Speech Communication and Technology, EUROSPEECH 1997
Country/TerritoryGreece
CityRhodes
Period9/22/979/25/97

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science Applications
  • Software
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Communication

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