Computational Linguistics & Phonetics Computational Linguistics & Phonetics Fachrichtung 4.7 Universität des Saarlandes

Semantic Theory

Computerlinguistik (2. Studienabschnitt)

M.Sc. Computational Linguistics

Lecturers: Manfred Pinkal, Stefan Thater
Place: Geb. 17.2, Seminarraum
Time: Tue 10-12, Thu 10-12 (used for lectures and exercises as needed)
Starts: 2012-04-24

This course teaches the prevalent formalisms and methods in natural-language semantics and their applications in natural language understanding systems. The students acquire the background knowledge necessary for an understanding of the current literature, and are acquainted with phenomena and methods in the semantics of words, sentences and texts, together with their formal modelling, as well as with the modelling of the syntax semantics interface and the interface to logic-based inference systems.

Topics of this course include:

  • Sentence semantics: Montague-style type-theoretical representations; semantics construction; scope ambiguities; underspecification
  • Discourse semantics: Anaphora; discourse representation theory (DRT)
  • Lexical semantics: Events; thematic roles; frames; lexical resources

Exercises and Exam

There will be several take-home exercises, and you have to achieve a certain number of points to be admitted to the final exam. More details can be found here.


Familiarity with first-order predicate logic


  • Gamut, Logic, Language, and Meaning, Vol. 2, University of Chicago Press, 1991
  • Kamp/Reyle, From Discourse to Logic, Kluwer, 1993

Role in the degree programmes

  • Diplom: Pflichtveranstaltung, 4 LP
  • M.Sc.: Required course for specialisation "computational linguistics", 6 LP
  • Ergänzungsfach für Informatik: Pflichtveranstaltung
  • Nebenfach für Magister-Studiengänge: Wahlpflichtveranstaltung