During our on-campus office hours, you can find us in either PHE 514 or PHE 516. In addition to the listed office hour, office hours are also by appointment. Last scheduled office hour is November 30.
For the moment, TA office hours will be located in the SAL computer lab.
This course covers both fundamental and cutting-edge topics in Natural Language Processing (NLP) and provides students with hands-on experience in NLP applications in the form of programming assignments in Python, and a group project where students have the freedom to pick the programming tools of their choice. Students are expected to have programming experience and either be familar with Python or able to quickly learn it during the first assignment.
As we'll explore in the course, natural language is often ambiguous, and machine learning is crucial to making decisions under uncertainty. Many other tools in basic artificial intelligence (e.g., planning, knowledge representation and reasoning) also play a role in understanding and responding to natural language. However, this class is aimed at students with a general background in computer science (i.e., you don't need to take a machine learning or AI course as a prerequisite). We will cover the necessary machine learning and basic AI material in this course.
The topics covered will be similar to last year and we anticipate discussing speech processing (language modeling, speech recognition, speech synthesis), linguistic foundations (parts of speech, syntax, speech disfluencies, semantics, dialogue, discourse), machine learning, and applications (information retrieval, information extraction, machine translation, natural language generation, dialogue systems, automated grading). There is no required text book for the course; we will use lectures to cover the material. Interested students can continue their study with other courses in USC's computational linguistics curriculum.
There will be a variety of resources used in this course to faciliate online discussion, distributing grades, and submitting coursework.
Rather than take a final exam, students will submit a report based on the presentations of 10 other groups. Use this template to write your report. We've set it up so that you should be able to find a "test" on Blackboard under Assignments where you will upload your report. Because this replaces your final exam, the exact time that it is due depends on your section, and should be visible in Blackboard.
Plagiarism - presenting someone else's ideas as your own, either verbatim or recast in your own words - is a serious academic offense with serious consequences. Please familiarize yourself with the discussion of plagiarism in SCampus in Part B, Section 11, "Behavior Violating University Standards" https://policy.usc.edu/student/scampus/part-b. Other forms of academic dishonesty are equally unacceptable. See additional information in SCampus and university policies on scientific misconduct, http://policy.usc.edu/scientific-misconduct.
Discrimination, sexual assault, intimate partner violence, stalking, and harassment are prohibited by the university. You are encouraged to report all incidents to the Office of Equity and Diversity/Title IX Office http://equity.usc.edu and/or to the Department of Public Safety http://dps.usc.edu. This is important for the health and safety of the whole USC community. Faculty and staff must report any information regarding an incident to the Title IX Coordinator who will provide outreach and information to the affected party. The sexual assault resource center webpage http://sarc.usc.edu fully describes reporting options. Relationship and Sexual Violence Services https://engemannshc.usc.edu/rsvp provides 24/7 confidential support.
A number of USC's schools provide support for students who need help with scholarly writing. Check with your advisor or program staff to find out more. Students whose primary language is not English should check with the American Language Institute http://ali.usc.edu, which sponsors courses and workshops specifically for international graduate students. The Office of Disability Services and Programs http://dsp.usc.edu provides certification for students with disabilities and helps arrange the relevant accommodations. If an officially declared emergency makes travel to campus infeasible, USC Emergency Information http://emergency.usc.edu will provide safety and other updates, including ways in which instruction will be continued by means of Blackboard, teleconferencing, and other technology.
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