Arabic Natural Language Processing Workshop

WANLP 2015

Workshop on Arabic Natural Language Processing

Including the Second Shared Task on Automatic Arabic Error Correction

Collocated with ACL-IJCNLP 2015, Beijing, China

Workshop Program


11 January 2015: First Call for Workshop Papers

19 February 2015: Second Call for Workshop Papers

21 May 2015 (was 14 May 2015): Workshop Paper Due Date

8 June 2015 (was 4 June 2015): Notification of Acceptance

21 June 2015: Camera-ready papers due

30 July 2015: Workshop Dates

Workshop Website:

For Shared Task important dates, see below.


There has been a lot of progress in the last 15 years in the area of Arabic Natural Language Processing (NLP). Many Arabic NLP (or Arabic NLP-related) workshops and conferences have taken place, both in the Arab World and in association with international conferences. This workshop follows in the footsteps of previous efforts to provide a forum for researchers to share and discuss their ongoing work.

We invite submissions on topics that include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Basic core technologies: morphological analysis, disambiguation, tokenization, POS tagging, named entity detection, chunking, parsing, semantic role labeling, sentiment analysis, Arabic dialect modeling, etc.
  • Applications: machine translation, speech recognition, speech synthesis, optical character recognition, pedagogy, assistive technologies, social media, etc.
  • Resources: dictionaries, annotated data, specialized databases etc.

Submissions may include work in progress as well as finished work. Submissions must have a clear focus on specific issues pertaining to the Arabic language whether it is standard Arabic, dialectal, or mixed. Descriptions of commercial systems are welcome, but authors should be willing to discuss the details of their work. Submissions are expected to be 8 pages long plus 2 pages for references. Associated with the workshop will be a shared task on Arabic text error correction (details below).


Main Workshop Papers

EDRAK: Entity-Centric Data Resource for Arabic Knowledge

Mohamed H. Gad-elrab, Mohamed Amir Yosef and Gerhard Weikum

POS-tagging of Tunisian Dialect Using Standard Arabic Resources and Tools

Ahmed Hamdi, Alexis Nasr, Nizar Habash and Nuria Gala

Joint Arabic Segmentation and Part-Of-Speech Tagging

Shabib AlGahtani and John McNaught

A Conventional Orthography for Algerian Arabic

Houda Saadane and Nizar Habash

Deep Learning Models for Sentiment Analysis in Arabic

Ahmad Al Sallab, Hazem Hajj, Gilbert Badaro, Ramy Baly, Wassim El Hajj and Khaled Bashir Shaban

Annotating Targets of Opinions in Arabic using Crowdsourcing

Noura Farra, Kathy McKeown and Nizar Habash

Best Practices for Crowdsourcing Dialectal Arabic Speech Transcription

Samantha Wray, Hamdy Mubarak and Ahmed Ali

A Light Lexicon-based Mobile Application for Sentiment Mining of Arabic Tweets

Gilbert Badaro, Ramy Baly, Rana Akel, Linda Fayad, Jeffrey Khairallah, Hazem Hajj, Khaled Shaban and Wassim El-Hajj

Multi-Reference Evaluation for Dialectal Speech Recognition System: A Study for Egyptian ASR

Ahmed Ali, Walid Magdy and Steve Renals

DIWAN: A Dialectal Word Annotation Tool for Arabic

Faisal Al-Shargi and Owen Rambow

Classifying Arab Names Geographically

Hamdy Mubarak and Kareem Darwish

Robust Part-of-Speech Tagging of Arabic Text

Hanan Aldarmaki and Mona Diab

Answer Selection in Arabic Community Question Answering: A Feature-Rich Approach

Yonatan Belinkov, Alberto Barrón-Cedeño and Hamdy Mubarak

Natural Language Processing for Dialectical Arabic: A Survey

Abdulhadi Shoufan and Sumaya Alameri

A Pilot Study on Arabic Multi-Genre Corpus Diacritization

Houda Bouamor, Wajdi Zaghouani, Mona Diab, Ossama Obeid, Kemal Oflazer, Mahmoud Ghoneim and Abdelati Hawwari

Shared Task Papers

The Second QALB Shared Task on Automatic Text Correction for Arabic

Alla Rozovskaya, Houda Bouamor, Nizar Habash, Wajdi Zaghouani, Ossama Obeid and Behrang Mohit

QCRI@QALB-2015 Shared Task: Correction of Arabic Text for Native and Non-Native Speakers’ Errors

Hamdy Mubarak, Kareem Darwish and Ahmed Abdelali

Arib@QALB-2015 Shared Task: A Hybrid Cascade Model for Arabic Spelling Error Detection and Correction

Nouf AlShenaifi, Rehab AlNefie, Maha Al-Yahya and Hend Al-Khalifa

SAHSOH@QALB-2015 Shared Task: A Rule-Based Correction Method of Common Arabic Native and Non-Native Speakers’ Errors

Wajdi Zaghouani, Taha Zerrouki and Amar Balla

GWU-HASP-2015@QALB‐2015 Shared Task: Priming Spelling Candidates with Probability

Mohammed Attia, Mohamed Al-Badrashiny and Mona Diab

QCMUQ@QALB-2015 Shared Task: Combining Character level MT and Error-tolerant Finite-State Recognition for Arabic Spelling Correction

Houda Bouamor, Hassan Sajjad, Nadir Durrani and Kemal Oflazer

UMMU@QALB-2015 Shared Task: Character and Word level SMT pipeline for Automatic Error Correction of Arabic Text

Fethi Bougares and Houda Bouamor

TECHLIMED@QALB-Shared Task 2015: a hybrid Arabic Error Correction System

Djamel MOSTEFA, Jaber ABUALASAL, Omar ASBAYOU, Mahmoud GZAWI and Ramzi Abbès

QALB 2015 Shared Task: CUFE Arabic Error Correction System

Michael Nawar


Following the success of the First Shared Task on Automatic Arabic Error Correction in the Arabic NLP Workshop 2014 (WANLP-2014, EMNLP, Doha), we will conduct the Second Shared Task on Automatic Arabic Error Correction as part of WANLP-2015.

Similar to the 2014 competition, the task relies on resources created under the Qatar Arabic Language Bank (QALB) project. In addition to the correction of Arabic native text (news comments), the 2015 shared task will include an additional correction of non-native texts.

In order to participate, you need to use this link to register and receive the training data. Also you need to subscribe to the QALB discussion group to receive the shared task notifications.

Participants are expected to also submit a short system description paper (4 pages + 2 for references).

The following FAQ page describes the steps for participating in the shared task. In summary, the shared task will use the following calendar:

  • February 15: Release of the initial training data
  • April 1: Final Release of the training data
  • April 30: Registration deadline
  • May 16: Test set available
  • May 28: Systems' outputs collected
  • June 3: System description paper deadline
  • June 10: Shared task results and answers keys to be announced
  • June 10: Shared task paper notification
  • June 21: Camera ready deadline for the system description paper
  • July 30: ACL 2015 Workshop in Beijing


Submission Types

There are two possible submissions types:

Full papers of maximum 8 pages + 2 for references

Shared Task System papers of maximum 4 pages + 2 for references AND authors must have participated in the shared task

Blind Reviewing Policy

The workshop follows a blind reviewing policy. The authors should omit their names and affiliations from the paper and avoid self-references that reveal their identity. Papers that do not conform to these requirements will be rejected without review.

Submission Format

All submissions must be electronic in PDF and must be formatted using the ACL 2015 style files available at

Submission Site

Papers should be submitted via the START Conference Manager at :

Please do not send papers by email to the organizers. Such papers will not be considered.

Multiple Submission Policy

Papers that have been or will be submitted to other meetings or publications must indicate this at submission time. Authors must inform organizers immediately once a paper is to be withdrawn from the workshop for any reason. Attempting to publish the same paper or with a large overlap (50%) may lead to rejection of the paper even after an acceptance notification have gone out.


Program Co-chairs

Nizar Habash, New York University Abu Dhabi

Stephan Vogel, Qatar Computing Research Institute

Kareem Darwish, Qatar Computing Research Institute

Publication Co-chairs

Nadi Tomeh, Paris 13 University

Houda Bouamor, Carnegie Mellon University Qatar

Publicity Chair

Wajdi Zaghouani, Carnegie Mellon University Qatar

Shared Task Committee

Alla Rozovskaya (co-chair), Columbia University

Houda Bouamor (co-chair), Carnegie Mellon University in Qatar

Behrang Mohit,

Wajdi Zaghouani, Carnegie Mellon University Qatar

Ossama Obeid, Carnegie Mellon University Qatar

Nizar Habash (advisor), New York University Abu Dhabi

Program Committee