Ting Wu


2022

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Less Is Better: Recovering Intended-Feature Subspace to Robustify NLU Models
Ting Wu | Tao Gui
Proceedings of the 29th International Conference on Computational Linguistics

Datasets with significant proportions of bias present threats for training a trustworthy model on NLU tasks. Despite yielding great progress, current debiasing methods impose excessive reliance on the knowledge of bias attributes. Definition of the attributes, however, is elusive and varies across different datasets. In addition, leveraging these attributes at input level to bias mitigation may leave a gap between intrinsic properties and the underlying decision rule. To narrow down this gap and liberate the supervision on bias, we suggest extending bias mitigation into feature space. Therefore, a novel model, Recovering Intended-Feature Subspace with Knowledge-Free (RISK) is developed. Assuming that shortcut features caused by various biases are unintended for prediction, RISK views them as redundant features. When delving into a lower manifold to remove redundancies, RISK reveals that an extremely low-dimensional subspace with intended features can robustly represent the highly biased dataset. Empirical results demonstrate our model can consistently improve model generalization to out-of-distribution set, and achieves a new state-of-the-art performance.

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Decorrelate Irrelevant, Purify Relevant: Overcome Textual Spurious Correlations from a Feature Perspective
Shihan Dou | Rui Zheng | Ting Wu | SongYang Gao | Junjie Shan | Qi Zhang | Yueming Wu | Xuanjing Huang
Proceedings of the 29th International Conference on Computational Linguistics

Natural language understanding (NLU) models tend to rely on spurious correlations (i.e., dataset bias) to achieve high performance on in-distribution datasets but poor performance on out-of-distribution ones. Most of the existing debiasing methods often identify and weaken these samples with biased features (i.e., superficial surface features that cause such spurious correlations). However, down-weighting these samples obstructs the model in learning from the non-biased parts of these samples. To tackle this challenge, in this paper, we propose to eliminate spurious correlations in a fine-grained manner from a feature space perspective. Specifically, we introduce Random Fourier Features and weighted re-sampling to decorrelate the dependencies between features to mitigate spurious correlations. After obtaining decorrelated features, we further design a mutual-information-based method to purify them, which forces the model to learn features that are more relevant to tasks. Extensive experiments on two well-studied NLU tasks demonstrate that our method is superior to other comparative approaches.