Benefits And Drawbacks Of Using Language Processing Technology
The Electronic Essay Rater (e-rater), developed by the Educational Testing Service
(ETS), uses syntactic variety, discourse structure and content analysis, and is based on natural language processing technology (Monaghan & Bridgeman). It applies statistical analysis to linguistic features, and also considers vocabulary and topical content. Currently the e-rater is broadly used in standardized tests, such as the SAT, GRE, Praxis and K-12 writing tests, supplementing human graders. The e-rater can score 16,000 essays in 20 seconds (Winerip). The productivity gains make it an affordable alternative to some institutions that have a limited budget to hire human graders.
Another kind of self-grading software has an inextricable connection with the proliferation of massively open online courses (MOOCs). The essay scoring program, using artificial intelligence technology, gives instant scores and progress data, allowing the students to make revisions, submit the work again, and improve on the feedback as many times as needed. It provides a time-saving benefit for both…