Reading Comprehension in University Texts: The Metrics of Lexical Complexity in Corpus Analysis in Spanish

  • Jenny Ortiz ZambranoEmail author
  • Eleanor Varela TapiaEmail author
Conference paper
Part of the Communications in Computer and Information Science book series (CCIS, volume 959)


The article focuses on the practical field of the development and implementation of a software application developed for the automatic processing of eight metrics to calculate the lexical complexity in a corpus that contains the transcriptions of university educational videos in Spanish called VYTEDU, prepared by teachers from the University of Guayaquil, Ecuador. The obtained result allowed to demonstrate the different indexes of lexical complexity that the texts have in terms of the comprehensibility of their content. One of the main characteristics of the texts lies in the difference in size and content. It should be noted that although some texts had greater content, the index of lexical complexity was lower than other texts whose content was smaller in size. The diffusion of the software supposes the use of it as a tool to continue researching in the field of Natural Language Processing. The application developed using free software tools facilitated the use of libraries in the field of Natural Language Processing contributing to the analysis of the complexity of text comprehension, making this research a second step to build an automatic simplification tool for text in Spanish in the higher academic field that is proposed as future work, since the first step was the construction of the VYTEDU corpus together with its publication.


Reading comprehension Lexical complexity Metrics Free software 



Our gratitude to the contribution that PhD Alfonso Ureña, director of the PhD program in Information and Communication Technologies of the UJA (University of Jaén) and PhD Arturo Montejo - Director of this research project gave us, and also our thanks to MSc. Rocío Anguita from the University of Granada for her contribution in the development and statistical application of this material.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Computer System Engineering CareerUniversity of GuayaquilGuayaquilEcuador

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