Exemplars and abstraction

10-14 Feb 2008; Nijmegen, Netherlands

This is the 2nd S2S workshop. 

Related papers: Deng&Strik 2007

1. Workshop aims

The workshop will have three related aims. The first one is to provide a broad insight into the topic of Exemplars and Abstraction. For this, we will invite several speakers with different backgrounds in linguistics, phonetics, psycholinguistics, and computer modelling. The second aim is to provide insight into computational modelling and automatic speech recognition. To achieve this aim, several researchers will provide introductory lectures within the fields of ASR and psycholinguistics. Finally, we will organise a course in Praat. Lectures, courses and practical trainings will alternate.

2. Preliminary Programme

For those arriving before 18h: dinner at the DAC and welcome.

Morning session chaired by Carlos Gussenhoven.

Time Activity Name
9.00 Talk Mirjam Ernestus – Introduction to abstractionist and exemplar-based models
9.50 Talk James McQueen – Sounds, words and voices in speech comprehension
10.40 Break Coffee and tea
11.00 Talk Paula Fikkert – Abstract representations and learning
11.50 Talk Sven Mattys – Recruiting episodic lexical traces under various degrees of signal degradation
12.40 Break Lunch
14.00 Course Introduction to and practising with Praat
16.30 End of day Put posters on poster boards
17.30 Evening Leaving for Nijmegen – Dinner and bowling

Morning session chaired by Lou Boves.

Time Activity Name
9.00 Talk Helmer Strik – Introduction to automatic speech recognition
9.50 Talk Dirk Van Compernolle – Combining abstract and exemplar modelling in ASR
10.40 Break Coffee and tea
11.00 Talk Odette Scharenborg – Introduction to computational modelling
11.30 Talk & discussion Brechtje Post & Sarah Hawkins – Bridging the gap between detail and abstraction
12.40 Break Lunch
14.00 Course Practising with Praat in small groups
15.30 Poster Poster session
18.00 End of day
18.30 Evening Dinner at the DAC


Time Activity Name
9.00 Meeting Project meetings
10.40 Break Coffee and tea
11.00 Discussion In small groups reflect on what you have learned + reporting back
12.00 Break Lunch
13.20 Meeting S2S Business meeting

Tour and beer tasting at the Nijmegen brewery.
Dinner in smaller groups in Nijmegen for people staying until Thursday.


We would like to ask the fellows to prepare a poster (size A0, landscape and portrait are both fine). The posters should make clear the fellow’s research goals and plans for the coming year in the context of the S2S project as a whole. The fellows are encouraged to point out questions/issues in their own research with which they need help from other S2S members in order to facilitate discussions.

Preparation for talk by Helmer Strik:
For the talk by Helmer Strik (‘Introduction to automatic speech recognition’) the reading material is Chapter 9 of the 2nd edition of Jurafsky & Martin’s ‘Speech and Language Processing’ .
The paper can be downloaded here*. We advise to print it, read it, and bring it with you to the workshop.

*Note 22nd Aug 08: the paper can no longer be downloaded. If you need a copy, email Helmer Strick

For the Praat course:
Please bring a laptop with Praat installed on it.

3. Name of and directions to the venue

Dominicaans Activiteiten Centrum (DAC)
Stadsdam 1
6851 AH Huissen

The DAC lies between Nijmegen and Arnhem. There are several airports in the surrounding area and trains and buses will get you to the convent.


Airports and trains:
The airports Amsterdam Schiphol and Eindhoven are the closest ones. When flying to Amsterdam Schiphol take the train to Arnhem and continue travelling by bus (see below). When flying to Eindhoven take the train to Nijmegen and continue travelling by bus (see below). Both train rides are approximately one hour. For train time table information, see this website

From Nijmegen Station: Take busline 32 in direction Huissen and leave the bus at Stadswal Fortisbank. Walk back approximately 30 meters, at the cycle and pedestrian lane take a left turn into a pathway (street name is: Achter de Gracht). Walk straight on onto the street called Kloosterlaan. On your left hand side there is the convent.

From Arnhem Station: Take busline 32 or 33 in direction Huissen and leave the bus at Stadswal Rabobank. Cross the street, continue for about 30 meters and take a left turn into a pathway (street name is: Achter de Gracht). Walk straight on onto the street called Kloosterlaan. On your left hand side there is the convent.


Please arrange to arrive on Sunday afternoon at the Dominicaans Activiteiten Centrum (DAC), where there will be a welcome get-together-dinner at 18.00. On Wednesday evening, an excursion is planned to the beer brewery in the city centre of Nijmegen. Departures are on Thursday morning.

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