Large language models (LLMs) have a wealth of knowledge that allows them to excel in various Natural Language Processing (NLP) tasks. Current research focuses on enhancing their performance within their existing knowledge. Despite their vast knowledge, LLMs are still limited by the amount of information they can accommodate and comprehend. Therefore, the ability to understand their own limitations on the unknows, referred to as self-knowledge, is of paramount importance. This study aims to evaluate LLMs’ self-knowledge by assessing their ability to identify unanswerable or unknowable questions. We introduce an automated methodology to detect uncertainty in the responses of these models, providing a novel measure of their self-knowledge. We further introduce a unique dataset, SelfAware, consisting of unanswerable questions from five diverse categories and their answerable counterparts. Our extensive analysis, involving 20 LLMs including GPT-3, InstructGPT, and LLaMA, discovering an intrinsic capacity for self-knowledge within these models. Moreover, we demonstrate that in-context learning and instruction tuning can further enhance this self-knowledge. Despite this promising insight, our findings also highlight a considerable gap between the capabilities of these models and human proficiency in recognizing the limits of their knowledge.
Generalized text representations are the foundation of many natural language understanding tasks. To fully utilize the different corpus, it is inevitable that models need to understand the relevance among them. However, many methods ignore the relevance and adopt a single-channel model (a coarse paradigm) directly for all tasks, which lacks enough rationality and interpretation. In addition, some existing works learn downstream tasks by stitches skill block (a fine paradigm), which might cause irrational results due to its redundancy and noise. In this work, we first analyze the task correlation through three different perspectives, , data property, manual design, and model-based relevance, based on which the similar tasks are grouped together. Then, we propose a hierarchical framework with a coarse-to-fine paradigm, with the bottom level shared to all the tasks, the mid-level divided to different groups, and the top-level assigned to each of the tasks. This allows our model to learn basic language properties from all tasks, boost performance on relevant tasks, and reduce the negative impact from irrelevant tasks. Our experiments on 13 benchmark datasets across five natural language understanding tasks demonstrate the superiority of our method.
Supersized pre-trained language models have pushed the accuracy of various natural language processing (NLP) tasks to a new state-of-the-art (SOTA). Rather than pursuing the reachless SOTA accuracy, more and more researchers start paying attention to model efficiency and usability. Different from accuracy, the metric for efficiency varies across different studies, making them hard to be fairly compared. To that end, this work presents ELUE (Efficient Language Understanding Evaluation), a standard evaluation, and a public leaderboard for efficient NLP models. ELUE is dedicated to depicting the Pareto Frontier for various language understanding tasks, such that it can tell whether and how much a method achieves Pareto improvement. Along with the benchmark, we also release a strong baseline, ElasticBERT, which allows BERT to exit at any layer in both static and dynamic ways. We demonstrate the ElasticBERT, despite its simplicity, outperforms or performs on par with SOTA compressed and early exiting models. With ElasticBERT, the proposed ELUE has a strong Pareto Frontier and makes a better evaluation for efficient NLP models.