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  1. Vlachos, Andreas ; Augenstein, Isabelle (Ed.)
    Parameter-efficient tuning aims at updating only a small subset of parameters when adapting a pretrained model to downstream tasks. In this work, we introduce PASTA, in which we only modify the special token representations (e.g., [SEP] and [CLS] in BERT) before the self-attention module at each layer in Transformer-based models. PASTA achieves comparable performance to fine-tuning in natural language understanding tasks including text classification and NER with up to only 0.029% of total parameters trained. Our work not only provides a simple yet effective way of parameter-efficient tuning, which has a wide range of practical applications when deploying finetuned models for multiple tasks, but also demonstrates the pivotal role of special tokens in pretrained language models.
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available May 1, 2024
  2. Deep neural networks are often overparameterized and may not easily achieve model generalization. Adversarial training has shown effectiveness in improving generalization by regularizing the change of loss on top of adversarially chosen perturbations. The recently proposed sharpness-aware minimization (SAM) algorithm conducts adversarial weight perturbation, encouraging the model to converge to a flat minima. SAM finds a common adversarial weight perturbation per-batch. Although per-instance adversarial weight perturbations are stronger adversaries and can potentially lead to better generalization performance, their computational cost is very high and thus it is impossible to use per-instance perturbations efficiently in SAM. In this paper, we tackle this efficiency bottleneck and propose sharpness-aware minimization with dynamic reweighting (delta-SAM). Our theoretical analysis motivates that it is possible to approach the stronger, per-instance adversarial weight perturbations using reweighted per-batch weight perturbations. delta-SAM dynamically reweights perturbation within each batch according to the theoretically principled weighting factors, serving as a good approximation to per-instance perturbation. Experiments on various natural language understanding tasks demonstrate the effectiveness of delta-SAM.
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 1, 2023
  3. Sentence-level relation extraction (RE) aims at identifying the relationship between two entities in a sentence. Many efforts have been devoted to this problem, while the best performing methods are still far from perfect. In this paper, we revisit two problems that affect the performance of existing RE models, namely entity representation and noisy or ill-defined labels. Our improved RE baseline, incorporated with entity representations with typed markers, achieves an F1 of 74.6% on TACRED, significantly outperforms previous SOTA methods. Furthermore, the presented new baseline achieves an F1 of 91.1% on the refined Re-TACRED dataset, demonstrating that the pretrained language models (PLMs) achieve high performance on this task. We release our code to the community for future research.
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available November 1, 2023
  4. Relation extraction (RE) models have been challenged by their reliance on training data with expensive annotations. Considering that summarization tasks aim at acquiring concise expressions of synoptical information from the longer context, these tasks naturally align with the objective of RE, i.e., extracting a kind of synoptical information that describes the relation of entity mentions. We present SuRE, which converts RE into a summarization formulation. SuRE leads to more precise and resource-efficient RE based on indirect supervision from summarization tasks. To achieve this goal, we develop sentence and relation conversion techniques that essentially bridge the formulation of summarization and RE tasks. We also incorporate constraint decoding techniques with Trie scoring to further enhance summarization-based RE with robust inference. Experiments on three RE datasets demonstrate the effectiveness of SuRE in both full-dataset and low-resource settings, showing that summarization is a promising source of indirect supervision signals to improve RE models.
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 1, 2023
  5. Current question answering (QA) systems primarily consider the single-answer scenario, where each question is assumed to be paired with one correct answer. However, in many real-world QA applications, multiple answer scenarios arise where consolidating answers into a comprehensive and non-redundant set of answers is a more efficient user interface. In this paper, we formulate the problem of answer consolidation, where answers are partitioned into multiple groups, each representing different aspects of the answer set. Then, given this partitioning, a comprehensive and non-redundant set of answers can be constructed by picking one answer from each group. To initiate research on answer consolidation, we construct a dataset consisting of 4,699 questions and 24,006 sentences and evaluate multiple models. Despite a promising performance achieved by the best-performing supervised models, we still believe this task has room for further improvements.
  6. Entity types and textual context are essential properties for sentence-level relation extraction (RE). Existing work only encodes these properties within individual instances, which limits the performance of RE given the insufficient features in a single sentence. In contrast, we model these properties from the whole dataset and use the dataset-level information to enrich the semantics of every instance. We propose the GraphCache (Graph Neural Network as Caching) module, that propagates the features across sentences to learn better representations for RE. GraphCache aggregates the features from sentences in the whole dataset to learn global representations of properties, and use them to augment the local features within individual sentences. The global property features act as dataset-level prior knowledge for RE, and a complement to the sentence-level features. Inspired by the classical caching technique in computer systems, we develop GraphCache to update the property representations in an online manner. Overall, GraphCache yields significant effectiveness gains on RE and enables efficient message passing across all sentences in the dataset.
  7. Recent literature focuses on utilizing the entity information in the sentence-level relation extraction (RE), but this risks leaking superficial and spurious clues of relations. As a result, RE still suffers from unintended entity bias, i.e., the spurious correlation between entity mentions (names) and relations. Entity bias can mislead the RE models to extract the relations that do not exist in the text. To combat this issue, some previous work masks the entity mentions to prevent the RE models from over-fitting entity mentions. However, this strategy degrades the RE performance because it loses the semantic information of entities. In this paper, we propose the CoRE (Counterfactual Analysis based Relation Extraction) debiasing method that guides the RE models to focus on the main effects of textual context without losing the entity information. We first construct a causal graph for RE, which models the dependencies between variables in RE models. Then, we propose to conduct counterfactual analysis on our causal graph to distill and mitigate the entity bias, that captures the causal effects of specific entity mentions in each instance. Note that our CoRE method is model-agnostic to debias existing RE systems during inference without changing their training processes. Extensive experimental results demonstratemore »that our CoRE yields significant gains on both effectiveness and generalization for RE. The source code is provided at:« less
  8. Recent information extraction approaches have relied on training deep neural models. However, such models can easily overfit noisy labels and suffer from performance degradation. While it is very costly to filter noisy labels in large learning resources, recent studies show that such labels take more training steps to be memorized and are more frequently forgotten than clean labels, therefore are identifiable in training. Motivated by such properties, we propose a simple co-regularization framework for entity-centric information extraction, which consists of several neural models with identical structures but different parameter initialization. These models are jointly optimized with the task-specific losses and are regularized to generate similar predictions based on an agreement loss, which prevents overfitting on noisy labels. Extensive experiments on two widely used but noisy benchmarks for information extraction, TACRED and CoNLL03, demonstrate the effectiveness of our framework. We release our code to the community for future research.
  9. Reinforcement learning (RL) in low-data and risk-sensitive domains requires performant and flexible deployment policies that can readily incorporate constraints during deployment. One such class of policies are the semi-parametric H-step lookahead policies, which select actions using trajectory optimization over a dynamics model for a fixed horizon with a terminal value function. In this work, we investigate a novel instantiation of H-step lookahead with a learned model and a terminal value function learned by a model-free off-policy algorithm, named Learning Off-Policy with Online Planning (LOOP). We provide a theoretical analysis of this method, suggesting a tradeoff between model errors and value function errors and empirically demonstrate this tradeoff to be beneficial in deep reinforcement learning. Furthermore, we identify the "Actor Divergence" issue in this framework and propose Actor Regularized Control (ARC), a modified trajectory optimization procedure. We evaluate our method on a set of robotic tasks for Offline and Online RL and demonstrate improved performance. We also show the flexibility of LOOP to incorporate safety constraints during deployment with a set of navigation environments. We demonstrate that LOOP is a desirable framework for robotics applications based on its strong performance in various important RL settings.