I can not sense this English word, Co-occurrence.

I'm thinking :

Pilot, while co-pilot is the second pilot (in the sense of helper or pilot subtitution)

According to wikipedia :

Co-occurrence or cooccurrence is a linguistics term that can either mean concurrence / coincidence or, in a more specific sense, the above-chance frequent occurrence of two terms from a text corpus alongside each other in a certain order

I'm thinking occurrence as frequency of an event .But co-occurrence ?

This is the text fragment I'm reading on, some terms may not be sound familiar, just ignore them, perhaps It can help you (to help me) sense the word.

RAKE uses stop words and phrase delimiters to partition the document text into candidate keywords, which are sequences of content words as they occur in the text. Co-occurrences of words within these candidate keywords are meaningful and allow us to identify word cooccurrence without the application of an arbitrarily sized sliding window.

Please help me to understand this (perhaps an example). Thanks

  • 1
    "Occurrence" has more than one definitions, the first of which is "an incident or event." That's the definition being used in this particular case, I believe. As far as I can tell the latter part refers to individual words that are commonly (i.e. more often than not) used together, though I'm struggling to think of any examples. Basically, they occur together, so they're co-occurrences. I'll let somebody who is far more capable of explaining that than me post an actual answer, though. Mar 8, 2016 at 15:33
  • @AnthonyGrist Ha your statement starts giving a bit light to my tiny brain, so (just an example) if a girl choose YOU & I among an hundred boys to be her boyfriends, so it means that WE are cooccurance? Mar 8, 2016 at 15:41
  • You might find it easier to find results if you spelled the word consistently - it should be occurrence, not occurrance. And no, "we are co-occurrence" doesn't make any sense. An occurrence is "something that happens" or "an incident". But you and I are people, not something that happens or an incident, so it doesn't make sense to say "we are co-occurrence".
    – stangdon
    Mar 8, 2016 at 16:40
  • @stangdon, thank you I've edited it (I didn't realize it) :D. Mar 8, 2016 at 16:59

2 Answers 2


The prefix co- generally means together. For example, cooperation means working (operating) together.

As Anthony said, occurrence in this case means instance or event. So a co-occurrence is two (or more) events that occur together. "Co-occurrences of words" means words appearing together.


Co-occurrences of words within these candidate keywords

Refers to the event that two (or more) words occur together. In this context, these are words that appear together more often than their individual frequencies would predict.

For example, the words "best" and "regards" often occur together in email messages; their frequent co-occurrence suggests that the combination "best regards" is important by itself.

The full quote suggests some algorithm in text analysis. I think this would not be the best place to look for technical explanation on that.


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