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QEAVis: Quantitative Evaluation of Academic Websites Visibility

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The application of the Human-Language Technologies (HLT) in the web arises new technological challenges. First, the web pages structure and textual content of the web sites is not comparable to the traditional domains in the textual treatment such as the news repositories. Second, the processing of big portions of the web arises a scalability problem and new challenges in the development of methodologies, techniques and algorithms of textual treatment. Thus, a qualitative improvement in the HLT is expected from this project.

The project plans the application of HLT to an important problem such as the measurement of the academic visibility in the web, giving the basis of a quantitative evaluation of the universities departments? commitment in the public access to their information. Web indicators (Cybermetrics) must be developed and applied to the study of the academic websites visibility, with special focus on the presence of the Spanish language (of strategic importance) and the academic areas related to humanities (which need special help for their web positioning).

First, we will determine the main web mediators of academic contents at web subdomains level. These subdomains should be crawled to unload, store and manage their web pages, so that the web pages are prepared for the automatic classification and extraction.

Web subdomains should be classified under language, academic category (Humanities, Science, etc) and discipline (Philosophy, Philology, etc). Furthermore, the information necessary for creating the card of each subdomain should be automatically extracted. All these information will be used to elaborate a profile and a description of each university department.

A series of web indicators will be applied to the information of the subdomains in order to quantify their presence, visibility, impact and popularity. The resultant quantitative values will be used to make a ranking of subdomains/departments per each academic category. In the ranking the top positions will be for those departments whose commitment to the visibility of their information is the largest.

The rankings, together with the criteria used in their construction, the recommendations and resources in order to improve the results, will make public. So, we expect to stimulate the continuous improvement of the accessibility and visibility of the academic information in the web.

Finally, we expect that the HLT application allow the development of new cybermetric indicators with higher granularity.