Arabella Sinclair


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AnaLog: Testing Analytical and Deductive Logic Learnability in Language Models
Samuel Ryb | Mario Giulianelli | Arabella Sinclair | Raquel Fernández
Proceedings of the 11th Joint Conference on Lexical and Computational Semantics

We investigate the extent to which pre-trained language models acquire analytical and deductive logical reasoning capabilities as a side effect of learning word prediction. We present AnaLog, a natural language inference task designed to probe models for these capabilities, controlling for different invalid heuristics the models may adopt instead of learning the desired generalisations. We test four languagemodels on AnaLog, finding that they have all learned, to a different extent, to encode information that is predictive of entailment beyond shallow heuristics such as lexical overlap and grammaticality. We closely analyse the best performing language model and show that while it performs more consistently than other language models across logical connectives and reasoning domains, it still is sensitive to lexical and syntactic variations in the realisation of logical statements.


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Is Information Density Uniform in Task-Oriented Dialogues?
Mario Giulianelli | Arabella Sinclair | Raquel Fernández
Proceedings of the 2021 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

The Uniform Information Density principle states that speakers plan their utterances to reduce fluctuations in the density of the information transmitted. In this paper, we test whether, and within which contextual units this principle holds in task-oriented dialogues. We show that there is evidence supporting the principle in written dialogues where participants play a cooperative reference game as well as in spoken dialogues involving instruction giving and following. Our study underlines the importance of identifying the relevant contextual components, showing that information content increases particularly within topically and referentially related contextual units.


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Refer, Reuse, Reduce: Generating Subsequent References in Visual and Conversational Contexts
Ece Takmaz | Mario Giulianelli | Sandro Pezzelle | Arabella Sinclair | Raquel Fernández
Proceedings of the 2020 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing (EMNLP)

Dialogue participants often refer to entities or situations repeatedly within a conversation, which contributes to its cohesiveness. Subsequent references exploit the common ground accumulated by the interlocutors and hence have several interesting properties, namely, they tend to be shorter and reuse expressions that were effective in previous mentions. In this paper, we tackle the generation of first and subsequent references in visually grounded dialogue. We propose a generation model that produces referring utterances grounded in both the visual and the conversational context. To assess the referring effectiveness of its output, we also implement a reference resolution system. Our experiments and analyses show that the model produces better, more effective referring utterances than a model not grounded in the dialogue context, and generates subsequent references that exhibit linguistic patterns akin to humans.


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Does Ability Affect Alignment in Second Language Tutorial Dialogue?
Arabella Sinclair | Adam Lopez | C. G. Lucas | Dragan Gasevic
Proceedings of the 19th Annual SIGdial Meeting on Discourse and Dialogue

The role of alignment between interlocutors in second language learning is different to that in fluent conversational dialogue. Learners gain linguistic skill through increased alignment, yet the extent to which they can align will be constrained by their ability. Tutors may use alignment to teach and encourage the student, yet still must push the student and correct their errors, decreasing alignment. To understand how learner ability interacts with alignment, we measure the influence of ability on lexical priming, an indicator of alignment. We find that lexical priming in learner-tutor dialogues differs from that in conversational and task-based dialogues, and we find evidence that alignment increases with ability and with word complexity.