Cognate Production using Character-based Machine Translation

Cognates are words in different languages that are associated with each other by language learners. Thus, cognates are important indicators for the prediction of the perceived difficulty of a text. We introduce a method for automatic cognate production using character-based machine translation. We show that our approach is able to learn production patterns from noisy training data and that it works for a wide range of language pairs. It even works across different alphabets, e.g. we obtain good results on the tested language pairs English-Russian, English-Greek, and English-Farsi. Our method performs significantly better than similarity measures used in previous work on cognates.


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