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Today, there is a real challenge to enable personalized access to information. Several systems have been proposed to address this challenge including Adaptive Hypermedia Systems (AHSs). However, the specification of adaptation strategies remains a difficult task for creators of such systems. In this paper, we consider the problem of the definition of adaptation strategies at a high level. We present two main contributions: a typology of elementary adaptation patterns for the adaptive navigation; and a process to generate adaptation strategies based on the use and the semiautomatic combination of patterns. We also describe how the generated adaptation strategies can be integrated into existing AHSs. A prototype has been implemented and an experiment in the e-learning domain has been conducted with a group of volunteers. This experiment shows that our pattern-based approach for defining adaptation strategies is more suitable than those based on “traditional” AH languages.