Victoria Rubin and her graduate students at LiT.RL developed methods to distinguish truth from deception in textual data. The rhetorical structure theory (RST) was used as the analytic framework to identify systematic differences between deceptive and truthful stories in terms of their coherence and structure. A vector space model (VSM) assesses each story’s position in multidimensional RST space with respect to its distance from truthful and deceptive centers as measures of the story’s level of deception and truthfulness. The RST-VSM for determining deception demonstrates that the discourse structure analysis as a significant method for automated deception detection and an effective complement to lexico-semantic analysis. The potential was in developing novel discourse-based tools to alert information users to potential deception in computer-mediated texts and social media. This project came before the hype about “fake news” and was a predecessor of the later R&D efforts in 2014 and on.


Meet the Prof.


Take courses with Dr. Rubin at FIMS, Western.

Research ↗

Read about studies at LiT.RL.


Meet the team at Rubin’s LiT.RL Lab.

Book ↗

Read about mis-/disinformation.


“Newsbits-n-bytes:” events, talks, announcements.