Workshop Description

Computational Linguistics and Clinical Psychology —
From Linguistic Signal to Clinical Reality

The Third Computational Linguistics and Clinical Psychology Workshop (CLPsych) was held in conjunction with the 2016 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics – Human Language Technologies (NAACL HLT 2016), in San Diego, California, on June 16th 2016.

The workshop program, with schedule and papers, is now available here.

Important Dates

Submissions deadline: February 25 March 3, 2016
Notifications sent to authors: March 20 March 23, 2016
Final, camera-ready papers due: March 30 April 4, 2016
Workshop in San Diego: June 16, 2016


ACL 2014 hosted the first Computational Linguistics and Clinical Psychology Workshop, and NAACL 2015 hosted the second such workshop with a near-doubling in attendance. Each workshop has supported a host of researchers helping to define and advance the state of the art in this nascent field. Published papers have proposed methods for aiding the diagnosis of dementia, quantifying repetitive behavior in conversations of autistic children, and detecting a number of mental health disorders in social media, including attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), and schizophrenia. The 2015 workshop additionally hosted a Shared Task for detecting depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). CLPsych 2016 aimed to continue the discussion and build the momentum towards releasing tools and data that can be used by mental and neurological healthcare professionals.

Goals and Topics of Interest

This workshop focused on language technology applications in mental and neurological health. We aimed to bring together natural language processing (NLP) researchers and clinicians, with the following four goals:

  • To increase language technologists’ understanding of what people working in the field of mental and neurological health — clinicians, psychologists, and social workers — do, and what their real needs are;
  • To increase clinicians’ understanding of what’s possible in language technology and what it might have to offer
  • To formulate targets and priorities for near-term improvement of the practical state of the art
  • To help facilitate the creation and development of high-value NLP tools that can be used in the clinical community

Instead of the traditional presentation+questions format, each paper also had a clinically-oriented discussant, who read the paper thoroughly in advance and briefly presented prepared commentary.

We were particularly interested in submissions that bear on issues like the following, relative to psychological conditions and neurological disorders:

  • What features of language or speech could play a prominent role in diagnosis, monitoring, and other elements of clinical practice?
  • What algorithms and forms of modeling are applicable?
  • What kinds of data exists or could be obtained?
  • What tools or resources does this research make available?
  • What practical or ethical issues require attention?

We aimed to emerge from the workshop discussions with a further strategy for progress in this field, informed by both the NLP and clinical psychologist participants. This could have included, for example, identifying additional topics, tasks, and data; formulating a plan for creating and sharing IRB application templates for NLP work in psychology; or identifying the top-level requirements for an NLP toolkit specifically devoted to practical issues in clinical psychology.

Shared Task

CLPsych 2016 once again included a Shared Task on detecting mental illness in social media. Further details are available at:

NAACL Anti-Harassment Policy

Our workshop highly values the open exchange of ideas, the freedom of thought and expression, and respectful scientific debate. We support and uphold the NAACL Anti-Harassment policy, and any workshop participant should feel free to contact any of the NAACL Board members or Priscilla Rasmussen, in case of any issues.

Paper Submission Instructions

A key goal of this workshop is to foster the conversation with clinicians, both at the workshop and when these papers are read in the future. We therefore include practicing clinicians and clinical researchers on our program committee; the ability to communicate ideas, approaches, and results clearly to people who are not computational linguists will be as important as the quality of the work itself.

We encouraged authors to include supplementary materials (up to 2 pages) with technical details kept out of the body of the paper. These and other supplementary materials, such as code or datasets, should be linked via URL in the final version of the accepted paper.

Submissions can contain up to 8 pages of content, plus references of any length, plus up to 2 pages of supplementary materials as described above. Supplementary materials should be self-contained (i.e., should start on a separate page). Papers must conform to the NAACL 2016 submission format guidelines, as detailed in the NAACL 2016 Call for Papers. Submissions should be anonymous. Papers must be submitted using the START system at:

We accepted submissions for either oral or poster presentation.


Kristy Hollingshead, IHMC
Lyle Ungar, University of Pennsylvania

To contact the organizers, please mail

Program Committee

Steven Bedrick, Oregon Health & Science University
Archna Bhatia, IHMC
Wilma Bucci, Adelphi University
Wei Chen, Nationwide Children’s Hospital
Leonardo Claudino, University of Maryland, College Park
Mike Conway, University of Utah
Glen Coppersmith, Qntfy
Brita Elvevåg, Department of Clinical Medicine, University of Tromsø
Peter Foltz, Pearson
Dan Goldwasser, Purdue University
Ben Hachey, University of Sydney
Graeme Hirst, University of Toronto
Christopher Homan, Rochester Institute of Technology
Jena Hwang, IHMC
Zac Imel, University of Utah
Loring Ingraham, George Washington University
William Jarrold, Nuance Communications
Yangfeng Ji, School of Interactive Computing, Georgia Institute of Technology
Dimitrios Kokkinakis, University of Gothenburg
Tong Liu, Rochester Institute of Technology
Shervin Malmasi, Harvard Medical School
Bernard Maskit, Stony Brook University
Margaret Mitchell, Microsoft Research
Eric Morley, Oregon Health & Science University
Danielle Mowery, University of Utah
Sean Murphy, John Jay College of Criminal Justice; City University of New York
Cecilia Ovesdotter Alm, Rochester Institute of Technology
Ted Pedersen, University of Minnesota
Craig Pfeifer, MITRE
Glen Pink, University of Sydney
Daniel Preotiuc, University of Pennsylvania
Emily Prud’hommeaux, Rochester Institute of Technology
Matthew Purver, Queen Mary University of London
Philip Resnik, University of Maryland
Rebecca Resnik, Mindwell Psychology
Brian Roark, Google
Mark Rosenstein, Pearson
Masoud Rouhizadeh, Stony Brook University & University of Pennsylvania
J. David Schaffer, Binghamton University
Ronald Schouten, Harvard Medical School
H. Andrew Schwartz, Stony Brook University
J. Ignacio Serrano, Spanish National Research Council
Richard Sproat, Google
Hiroki Tanaka, Nara Institute of Science and Technology
Michael Tanana, University of Utah
Paul Thompson, Dartmouth College
Jan van Santen, Oregon Health & Science University
Eleanor Yelland, University College London
Dan Yoo, Cambia Health

Web Sites

General information:
Paper submissions:
NAACL conference site: