Professor: LEO WANNER


The couse covers the central themes involved in the interaction with intelligent agents through the use of natural language, with emphasis on dialogue and language generation. We  will also study planning techniques applied to the theory of speech acts and the use of rhetorical structures, both for controlled dialogues as for dynamic and non-cooperative dialogues. Regarding analysis and generation of language, students will learn robust and incremental techinques capable of dealing with partial, and even ungrammatical discourse, as it's typical of spontaneous dialogues. We will also look at the design of dialogue architectures, and analyze the use of dialogue in "chatbots" and videogames. The course also covers spoken interaction including aspects on automatic speech recognition, atuomatic speaker recognition, and text-to-speech synthesis.


  • Introduction: History of human-computer interaction, problem statements, typical applications.
  • Dialogue models, basic types of dialogues (conversational analysis, principles and characteristics of cooperative and non-cooperative dialogues), pragmatics.
  • Dialogue strategies (types of dialogue strategies, relation to the game theory); speech act and discourse structure driven dialogue strategies.
  • User modeling in dialogue systems.
  • Dialogue languages.
  • Machine learning techniques in dialogue systems.
  • Linguistic background for natural language parsing (analysis) and generation.
  • Parsing 1: Basic syntactic parsing techniques
  • Parsing 2: Robust semantic parsing
  • Generation 1: Stochastic generation techniques
  • Generation 2: Incremental language generation
  • Design of dialogue systems
  • Applications 1: Case study of dialogues in selected chatbots
  • Applications 2: Case study of dialogues in selected role-oriented video games.
  • Speech and speaker recognition
  • Text-to-speech Synthesis


  • Project presentations 50%
  • Exam 50%


Lyon, Richard F. "Human and machine hearing: extracting meaning from sound". Cambridge, United Kingdom : Cambridge University Press, 2017.

Goldberg, Yoav. "Neural Network Methods in Natural Language Processing". Morgan & Claypool Publishers, 2017.