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Concept Based Query Expansion

Qiu Y.
Frei H.P.


Query expansion methods have been studied for a long time - with debatable success in many instances. In this paper we present a probabilistic query expansion model based on a similarity thesaurus which was constructed automatically. A similarity thesaurus reflects domain knowledge about the particular collection from which it is constructed. We address the two important issues with query expansion: the selection and the weighting of additional search terms. In contrast to earlier methods, our queries are expanded by adding those terms that are most similar to the concept of the query, rather than selecting terms that are similar to the query terms. Our experiments show that this kind of query expansion results in a notable improvement in the retrieval effectiveness when measured using both recall-precision and usefulness.

[Qiu93] Qiu Y. and Frei H.P.. Concept Based Query Expansion. In Proc. of the 16th Int. ACM SIGIR Conf., pages 160-169, ACM Press, June 1993.

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