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Experimenting with automatic text summarization for Arabic

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Abstract

The volume of information available on the Web is increasing rapidly. The need for systems that can automatically summarise documents is becoming ever more desirable. For this reason, text summarisation has quickly grown into a major research area as illustrated by the DUC and TAC conference series. Summarisation systems for Arabic are however still not as sophisticated and as reliable as those developed for languages like English. In this paper we discuss two summarisation systems for Arabic and report on a large user study performed on these systems. The first system, the Arabic Query-Based Text Summarisation System (AQBTSS), uses standard retrieval methods to map a query against a document collection and to create a summary. The second system, the Arabic Concept-Based Text Summarisation System (ACBTSS), creates a query-independent document summary. Five groups of users from different ages and educational levels participated in evaluating our systems.