We study the problem of weakly supervised text classification, which aims to classify text documents into a set of pre-defined categories with category surface names only and without any annotated training document provided. Most existing classifiers leverage textual information in each document. However, in many domains, documents are accompanied by various types of metadata (e.g., authors, venue, and year of a research paper). These metadata and their combinations may serve as strong category indicators in addition to textual contents. In this paper, we explore the potential of using metadata to help weakly supervised text classification. To be specific, we model the relationships between documents and metadata via a heterogeneous information network. To effectively capture higher-order structures in the network, we use motifs to describe metadata combinations. We propose a novel framework, named MotifClass, which (1) selects category-indicative motif instances, (2) retrieves and generates pseudo-labeled training samples based on category names and indicative motif instances, and (3) trains a text classifier using the pseudo training data. Extensive experiments on real-world datasets demonstrate the superior performance of MotifClass to existing weakly supervised text classification approaches. Further analysis shows the benefit of considering higher-order metadata information in our framework.
META: Metadata-Empowered Weak Supervision for Text Classification
Recent advances in weakly supervised learn- ing enable training high-quality text classifiers by only providing a few user-provided seed words. Existing methods mainly use text data alone to generate pseudo-labels despite the fact that metadata information (e.g., author and timestamp) is widely available across various domains. Strong label indicators exist in the metadata and it has been long overlooked mainly due to the following challenges: (1) metadata is multi-typed, requiring systematic modeling of different types and their combinations, (2) metadata is noisy, some metadata entities (e.g., authors, venues) are more compelling label indicators than others. In this paper, we propose a novel framework, META, which goes beyond the existing paradigm and leverages metadata as an additional source of weak supervision. Specifically, we organize the text data and metadata together into a text-rich network and adopt network motifs to capture appropriate combinations of metadata. Based on seed words, we rank and filter motif instances to distill highly label-indicative ones as “seed motifs”, which provide additional weak supervision. Following a boot-strapping manner, we train the classifier and expand the seed words and seed motifs iteratively. Extensive experiments and case studies on real-world datasets demonstrate superior performance and significant advantages of leveraging metadata more »
- Award ID(s):
- Publication Date:
- NSF-PAR ID:
- Journal Name:
- Proceedings of the 2020 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing (EMNLP)
- Page Range or eLocation-ID:
- 8351 to 8361
- Sponsoring Org:
- National Science Foundation
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