University of Richmond Computer Science Professor Joonsuk Park Receives Funding From Jeffress Trust Awards Program

July 10, 2020

UNIVERSITY OF RICHMOND — Joonsuk Park, assistant professor of computer science, has received a $104,500 award from the Thomas F. and Kate Miller Jeffress Memorial Trust for his research on online product reviews. Jeffress Trust grants support research in chemical, medical, or other scientific fields.

Park’s project, “Understanding the Impact of Argumentative Structures on Helpfulness of Online Product Reviews,” will lay a foundation to study the relationships between argumentative structures and different measures of quality, such as helpfulness, clarity, and persuasiveness, of product reviews.

“This work will also pave the way for machine-assisted construction of arguments and in the future will be incorporated into peer-assessment so that students can provide more helpful feedback to one another,” Park added. “Lastly, if and when deployed in large scale, this technology can help improve the overall quality of textual content available online to everyone."

The award will support up to five undergraduate student researchers during the summer period, as well as supplies, equipment, and travel expenses.

Park has taught at UR since 2018. His research interests primarily lie in data science, natural language processing, and argumentation, as well as their applications in various areas, such as recommendation and essay grading systems. He also conducts research on computer science education.

Park is one of four UR faculty to receive a Jeffress Trust award this year.