Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Legacy Department

Computer Science


Wang, James

Committee Member

Lou , Feng

Committee Member

Smotherman , Mark


Although using ontologies to assist information retrieval and text document processing has recently attracted more and more attention, existing ontology-based approaches have not shown advantages over the traditional keywords-based Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI) method. This paper proposes an algorithm to extract a concept forest (CF) from a document with the assistance of a natural language ontology, the WordNet lexical database. Using concept forests to represent the semantics of text documents, the semantic similarities of these documents are then measured as the commonalities of their concept forests. Performance studies of text document clustering based on different document similarity measurement methods show that the CF-based similarity measurement is an effective alternative to the existing keywords-based methods. Especially, this CF-based approach has obvious advantages over the existing keywords-based methods, including LSI, in dealing with text abstract databases, such as MEDLINE, or in P2P environments where it is impractical to collect the entire document corpus for analysis.