Project A01: Adaptive explanation generation

While explaining something, people generally take their conversation partner’s reactions into account and adapt their explanation accordingly. In Project A01, researchers from linguistics, psychology, and computer science are studying two components of this adjustment: cognitive adaptivity and interactive adaptivity. In cognitive adaptivity, the person doing the explaining has a pre-conception of their counterpart, which then changes during the explanatory process. This is referred to as the partner model. Interactive adaptivity refers to how the explainee adjusts their formulations of the explanations as the dialogue unfolds. The interdisciplinary team of researchers is investigating how both of these forms of adaptivity are interconnected, and how for instance the partner model can be used as a means for adapting formulations. The team will observe and interview approximately 300 interlocutors engaged in explanatory situations. Researchers are now working to develop a dynamic computational model of adaptive explanation based on this data.


Research areas: Psychology, Computer science, Linguistics

Project leaders

Prof. Dr. Heike Buhl, Paderborn University

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Stefan Kopp, Bielefeld University

Prof. Dr. Katharina Rohlfing, Paderborn University


Josephine Beryl Fisher, Paderborn University

Amelie Sophie Robrecht, Bielefeld University

Erick K. Ronoh, Paderborn University

Support staff

Ronja Baumgarten, Paderborn University

Viviane Gladow, Paderborn University

Alessia Heimsath, Paderborn University

Fabian Heinrich, Bielefeld University

Britta Meyer, Paderborn University

Celina Nitschke, Paderborn University

Marco Verwiebe, Paderborn University

Alexander Vorwerk, Bielefeld University

Marie Weise, Paderborn University


Fisher, J. B., Rohlfing, K. J., Donnellan, E., Grimminger, A., Gu, Y., Vigliocco, G. (2022). Explain with, rather than explain to: How explainees shape their learning. Konferenz-Poster zur „CogSci 2022 Toronto“. Poster anzeigen

Robrecht, A. and Kopp, S. (2023). SNAPE: A Sequential Non-Stationary Decision Process Model for Adaptive Explanation Generation. DOI: 10.5220/0011671300003393

Fisher, J.B., Lohmer, V., Kern, F. et al. (2022) Exploring Monological and Dialogical Phases in Naturally Occurring Explanations. Künstl Intell.