Statistical Analysis of Text Summarization Evaluation
Rankel, Peter A.
Slud, Eric V.
Conroy, John M.
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This dissertation applies statistical methods to the evaluation of automatic summarization using data from the Text Analysis Conferences in 2008-2011. Several aspects of the evaluation framework itself are studied, including the statistical testing used to determine significant differences, the assessors, and the design of the experiment. In addition, a family of evaluation metrics is developed to predict the score an automatically generated summary would receive from a human judge and its results are demonstrated at the Text Analysis Conference. Finally, variations on the evaluation framework are studied and their relative merits considered. An over-arching theme of this dissertation is the application of standard statistical methods to data that does not conform to the usual testing assumptions.