Lingzhi Wang


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IndiVec: An Exploration of Leveraging Large Language Models for Media Bias Detection with Fine-Grained Bias Indicators
Luyang Lin | Lingzhi Wang | Xiaoyan Zhao | Jing Li | Kam-Fai Wong
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EACL 2024

This study focuses on media bias detection, crucial in today’s era of influential social media platforms shaping individual attitudes and opinions. In contrast to prior work that primarily relies on training specific models tailored to particular datasets, resulting in limited adaptability and subpar performance on out-of-domain data, we introduce a general bias detection framework, IndiVec, built upon large language models. IndiVec begins by constructing a fine-grained media bias database, leveraging the robust instruction-following capabilities of large language models and vector database techniques. When confronted with new input for bias detection, our framework automatically selects the most relevant indicator from the vector database and employs majority voting to determine the input’s bias label. IndiVec excels compared to previous methods due to its adaptability (demonstrating consistent performance across diverse datasets from various sources) and explainability (providing explicit top-k indicators to interpret bias predictions). Experimental results on four political bias datasets highlight IndiVec’s significant superiority over baselines. Furthermore, additional experiments and analysis provide profound insights into the framework’s effectiveness.


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Opportunities and Challenges in Neural Dialog Tutoring
Jakub Macina | Nico Daheim | Lingzhi Wang | Tanmay Sinha | Manu Kapur | Iryna Gurevych | Mrinmaya Sachan
Proceedings of the 17th Conference of the European Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics

Designing dialog tutors has been challenging as it involves modeling the diverse and complex pedagogical strategies employed by human tutors. Although there have been significant recent advances in neural conversational systems using large language models and growth in available dialog corpora, dialog tutoring has largely remained unaffected by these advances. In this paper, we rigorously analyze various generative language models on two dialog tutoring datasets for language learning using automatic and human evaluations to understand the new opportunities brought by these advances as well as the challenges we must overcome to build models that would be usable in real educational settings. We find that although current approaches can model tutoring in constrained learning scenarios when the number of concepts to be taught and possible teacher strategies are small, they perform poorly in less constrained scenarios. Our human quality evaluation shows that both models and ground-truth annotations exhibit low performance in terms of equitable tutoring, which measures learning opportunities for students and how engaging the dialog is. To understand the behavior of our models in a real tutoring setting, we conduct a user study using expert annotators and find a significantly large number of model reasoning errors in 45% of conversations. Finally, we connect our findings to outline future work.

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KGA: A General Machine Unlearning Framework Based on Knowledge Gap Alignment
Lingzhi Wang | Tong Chen | Wei Yuan | Xingshan Zeng | Kam-Fai Wong | Hongzhi Yin
Proceedings of the 61st Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 1: Long Papers)

Recent legislation of the “right to be forgotten” has led to the interest in machine unlearning, where the learned models are endowed with the function to forget information about specific training instances as if they have never existed in the training set. Previous work mainly focuses on computer vision scenarios and largely ignores the essentials of unlearning in NLP field, where text data contains more explicit and sensitive personal information than images. In this paper, we propose a general unlearning framework called KGA to induce forgetfulness. Different from previous work that tries to recover gradients or forces models to perform close to one specific distribution, KGA maintains distribution differences (i.e., knowledge gap). This relaxes the distribution assumption. Furthermore, we first apply the unlearning method to various NLP tasks (i.e., classification, translation, response generation) and propose several unlearning evaluation metrics with pertinence. Experiments on large-scale datasets show that KGA yields comprehensive improvements over baselines, where extensive analyses further validate the effectiveness of KGA and provide insight into unlearning for NLP tasks.

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Strategize Before Teaching: A Conversational Tutoring System with Pedagogy Self-Distillation
Lingzhi Wang | Mrinmaya Sachan | Xingshan Zeng | Kam-Fai Wong
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EACL 2023

Conversational tutoring systems (CTSs) aim to help students master educational material with natural language interaction in the form of a dialog. CTSs have become a key pillar in educational data mining research. A key challenge in CTSs is to engage the student in the conversation while exposing them to a diverse set of teaching strategies, akin to a human teacher, thereby, helping them learn in the process. Different from previous work that generates responses given the strategies as input, we propose to jointly predict teaching strategies and generate tutor responses accordingly, which fits a more realistic application scenario. We benchmark several competitive models on three dialog tutoring datasets and propose a unified framework that combines teaching response generation and pedagogical strategy prediction, where a self-distillation mechanism is adopted to guide the teaching strategy learning and facilitate tutor response generation. Our experiments and analyses shed light on how teaching strategies affect dialog tutoring.


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RecInDial: A Unified Framework for Conversational Recommendation with Pretrained Language Models
Lingzhi Wang | Huang Hu | Lei Sha | Can Xu | Daxin Jiang | Kam-Fai Wong
Proceedings of the 2nd Conference of the Asia-Pacific Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics and the 12th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing (Volume 1: Long Papers)

Conversational Recommender System (CRS), which aims to recommend high-quality items to users through interactive conversations, has gained great research interest recently. A CRS is usually composed of a recommendation module and a generation module. In the previous work, these two modules are loosely connected in the model training and are shallowly integrated during inference, where a simple switching or copy mechanism is adopted to incorporate recommended items into generated responses. Moreover, the current end-to-end neural models trained on small crowd-sourcing datasets (e.g., 10K dialogs in the ReDial dataset) tend to overfit and have poor chit-chat ability. In this work, we propose a novel unified framework that integrates recommendation into the dialog (RecInDial) generation by introducing a vocabulary pointer. To tackle the low-resource issue in CRS, we finetune the large-scale pretrained language models to generate fluent and diverse responses, and introduce a knowledge-aware bias learned from an entity-oriented knowledge graph to enhance the recommendation performance. Furthermore, we propose to evaluate the CRS models in an end-to-end manner, which can reflect the overall performance of the entire system rather than the performance of individual modules, compared to the separate evaluations of the two modules used in previous work. Experiments on the benchmark dataset ReDial show our RecInDial model significantly surpasses the state-of-the-art methods. More extensive analyses show the effectiveness of our model.

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Learning When and What to Quote: A Quotation Recommender System with Mutual Promotion of Recommendation and Generation
Lingzhi Wang | Xingshan Zeng | Kam-Fai Wong
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2022

This work extends the current quotation recommendation task to a more realistic quotation recommender system that learns to predict when to quote and what to quote jointly. The system consists of three modules (tasks), a prediction module to predict whether to quote given conversation contexts, a recommendation module to recommend suitable quotations and a generation module generating quotations or sentences in ordinary language to continue the conversation. We benchmark several competitive models for the two newly introduced tasks (i.e., when-to-quote and what-to-continue). For quotation recommendation, compared with previous work that is either generation-based or ranking-based recommendation, we propose a novel framework with mutual promotion of generation module and ranking-based recommendation module. Experiments show that our framework achieves significantly better performance than baselines on two datasets. Further experiments and analyses validate the effectiveness of the proposed mechanisms and get a better understanding of the quotation recommendation task.


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Re-entry Prediction for Online Conversations via Self-Supervised Learning
Lingzhi Wang | Xingshan Zeng | Huang Hu | Kam-Fai Wong | Daxin Jiang
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2021

In recent years, world business in online discussions and opinion sharing on social media is booming. Re-entry prediction task is thus proposed to help people keep track of the discussions which they wish to continue. Nevertheless, existing works only focus on exploiting chatting history and context information, and ignore the potential useful learning signals underlying conversation data, such as conversation thread patterns and repeated engagement of target users, which help better understand the behavior of target users in conversations. In this paper, we propose three interesting and well-founded auxiliary tasks, namely, Spread Pattern, Repeated Target user, and Turn Authorship, as the self-supervised signals for re-entry prediction. These auxiliary tasks are trained together with the main task in a multi-task manner. Experimental results on two datasets newly collected from Twitter and Reddit show that our method outperforms the previous state-of-the-arts with fewer parameters and faster convergence. Extensive experiments and analysis show the effectiveness of our proposed models and also point out some key ideas in designing self-supervised tasks.

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Quotation Recommendation and Interpretation Based on Transformation from Queries to Quotations
Lingzhi Wang | Xingshan Zeng | Kam-Fai Wong
Proceedings of the 59th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics and the 11th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing (Volume 2: Short Papers)

To help individuals express themselves better, quotation recommendation is receiving growing attention. Nevertheless, most prior efforts focus on modeling quotations and queries separately and ignore the relationship between the quotations and the queries. In this work, we introduce a transformation matrix that directly maps the query representations to quotation representations. To better learn the mapping relationship, we employ a mapping loss that minimizes the distance of two semantic spaces (one for quotation and another for mapped-query). Furthermore, we explore using the words in history queries to interpret the figurative language of quotations, where quotation-aware attention is applied on top of history queries to highlight the indicator words. Experiments on two datasets in English and Chinese show that our model outperforms previous state-of-the-art models.


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Continuity of Topic, Interaction, and Query: Learning to Quote in Online Conversations
Lingzhi Wang | Jing Li | Xingshan Zeng | Haisong Zhang | Kam-Fai Wong
Proceedings of the 2020 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing (EMNLP)

Quotations are crucial for successful explanations and persuasions in interpersonal communications. However, finding what to quote in a conversation is challenging for both humans and machines. This work studies automatic quotation generation in an online conversation and explores how language consistency affects whether a quotation fits the given context. Here, we capture the contextual consistency of a quotation in terms of latent topics, interactions with the dialogue history, and coherence to the query turn’s existing contents. Further, an encoder-decoder neural framework is employed to continue the context with a quotation via language generation. Experiment results on two large-scale datasets in English and Chinese demonstrate that our quotation generation model outperforms the state-of-the-art models. Further analysis shows that topic, interaction, and query consistency are all helpful to learn how to quote in online conversations.


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Coupling Global and Local Context for Unsupervised Aspect Extraction
Ming Liao | Jing Li | Haisong Zhang | Lingzhi Wang | Xixin Wu | Kam-Fai Wong
Proceedings of the 2019 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing and the 9th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing (EMNLP-IJCNLP)

Aspect words, indicating opinion targets, are essential in expressing and understanding human opinions. To identify aspects, most previous efforts focus on using sequence tagging models trained on human-annotated data. This work studies unsupervised aspect extraction and explores how words appear in global context (on sentence level) and local context (conveyed by neighboring words). We propose a novel neural model, capable of coupling global and local representation to discover aspect words. Experimental results on two benchmarks, laptop and restaurant reviews, show that our model significantly outperforms the state-of-the-art models from previous studies evaluated with varying metrics. Analysis on model output show our ability to learn meaningful and coherent aspect representations. We further investigate how words distribute in global and local context, and find that aspect and non-aspect words do exhibit different context, interpreting our superiority in unsupervised aspect extraction.