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Dissertation Information for Mavis Molto

- Mavis Molto

- Ph.D.

- Library and Information Science

- University of California, Los Angeles (USA) (1989)

- Marcia J. Bates

- Harold Borko
- John V. Richardson Jr.
- Marianne Celce-Murcia
- Earl James Rand

MPACT Status: Fully Complete

Title: Textual regularities applicable to full text searching: The case of family history literature

Abstract: The increased availability of full text databases has been accompanied by various searching problems, connected with natural language retrieval. The study considered a particular technique, text analysis, as a means for identifying properties of specific subject domains that can be exploited in full text searching and in database and system design. The subject domain selected for analysis was family history literature.

The primary research objective consisted of identifying properties of family history literature, relevant to full text search improvement and database and system design. Data were drawn from a sample of 200 family history articles, including text pertaining to selected males and females discussed in the articles. Twenty-nine potential search terms, useful as limiting elements in common and homographic name searching, were examined with regard to each of the sampled persons. The search terms included the subject's first, last, and married names, along with certain kinship terms (i.e., the names of the subject's spouse, father, and mother) and life event terms (i.e., the subject's year and place of birth, death, and marriage).

The family history articles were relatively short in length (6.0 pages) and contained a limited number of graphical items, with associated implications for database and system design. Personal name terms, that is, the subject's name terms and the kinship terms, occurred in higher frequencies in the articles than life event terms, for both males and females, with higher recall thus expected with personal names than with the life event terms. Certain search term frequencies differed significantly with respect to gender, suggesting differing search strategies for males versus females. Search term synonyms, homographs, form variations, and co-occurrence patterns were also identified, with additional implications for searching.

The secondary research objective focused on determining the sublanguage status of family history literature. Frequency comparisons were made for six word categories (proper nouns, numbers, kinship nouns, life event nouns, life event verbs, and pronouns) in a 19,874-word family history corpus and the Brown Corpus, a one-million-word sample from general English. The family history literature differed significantly from general English in the word category frequencies, providing evidence for sublanguage status.

MPACT Scores for Mavis Molto

A = 0
C = 0
A+C = 0
T = 0
G = 0
W = 0
TD = 0
TA = 0
calculated 2008-01-31 06:14:38

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Students under Mavis Molto

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