Xin Sun


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Incorporating Hierarchy into Text Encoder: a Contrastive Learning Approach for Hierarchical Text Classification
Zihan Wang | Peiyi Wang | Lianzhe Huang | Xin Sun | Houfeng Wang
Proceedings of the 60th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 1: Long Papers)

Hierarchical text classification is a challenging subtask of multi-label classification due to its complex label hierarchy. Existing methods encode text and label hierarchy separately and mix their representations for classification, where the hierarchy remains unchanged for all input text. Instead of modeling them separately, in this work, we propose Hierarchy-guided Contrastive Learning (HGCLR) to directly embed the hierarchy into a text encoder. During training, HGCLR constructs positive samples for input text under the guidance of the label hierarchy. By pulling together the input text and its positive sample, the text encoder can learn to generate the hierarchy-aware text representation independently. Therefore, after training, the HGCLR enhanced text encoder can dispense with the redundant hierarchy. Extensive experiments on three benchmark datasets verify the effectiveness of HGCLR.

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Adjusting the Precision-Recall Trade-Off with Align-and-Predict Decoding for Grammatical Error Correction
Xin Sun | Houfeng Wang
Proceedings of the 60th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 2: Short Papers)

Modern writing assistance applications are always equipped with a Grammatical Error Correction (GEC) model to correct errors in user-entered sentences. Different scenarios have varying requirements for correction behavior, e.g., performing more precise corrections (high precision) or providing more candidates for users (high recall). However, previous works adjust such trade-off only for sequence labeling approaches. In this paper, we propose a simple yet effective counterpart – Align-and-Predict Decoding (APD) for the most popular sequence-to-sequence models to offer more flexibility for the precision-recall trade-off. During inference, APD aligns the already generated sequence with input and adjusts scores of the following tokens. Experiments in both English and Chinese GEC benchmarks show that our approach not only adapts a single model to precision-oriented and recall-oriented inference, but also maximizes its potential to achieve state-of-the-art results. Our code is available at


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Relation-aware Video Reading Comprehension for Temporal Language Grounding
Jialin Gao | Xin Sun | Mengmeng Xu | Xi Zhou | Bernard Ghanem
Proceedings of the 2021 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Temporal language grounding in videos aims to localize the temporal span relevant to the given query sentence. Previous methods treat it either as a boundary regression task or a span extraction task. This paper will formulate temporal language grounding into video reading comprehension and propose a Relation-aware Network (RaNet) to address it. This framework aims to select a video moment choice from the predefined answer set with the aid of coarse-and-fine choice-query interaction and choice-choice relation construction. A choice-query interactor is proposed to match the visual and textual information simultaneously in sentence-moment and token-moment levels, leading to a coarse-and-fine cross-modal interaction. Moreover, a novel multi-choice relation constructor is introduced by leveraging graph convolution to capture the dependencies among video moment choices for the best choice selection. Extensive experiments on ActivityNet-Captions, TACoS, and Charades-STA demonstrate the effectiveness of our solution. Codes will be available at

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Instantaneous Grammatical Error Correction with Shallow Aggressive Decoding
Xin Sun | Tao Ge | Furu Wei | Houfeng Wang
Proceedings of the 59th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics and the 11th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing (Volume 1: Long Papers)

In this paper, we propose Shallow Aggressive Decoding (SAD) to improve the online inference efficiency of the Transformer for instantaneous Grammatical Error Correction (GEC). SAD optimizes the online inference efficiency for GEC by two innovations: 1) it aggressively decodes as many tokens as possible in parallel instead of always decoding only one token in each step to improve computational parallelism; 2) it uses a shallow decoder instead of the conventional Transformer architecture with balanced encoder-decoder depth to reduce the computational cost during inference. Experiments in both English and Chinese GEC benchmarks show that aggressive decoding could yield identical predictions to greedy decoding but with significant speedup for online inference. Its combination with the shallow decoder could offer an even higher online inference speedup over the powerful Transformer baseline without quality loss. Not only does our approach allow a single model to achieve the state-of-the-art results in English GEC benchmarks: 66.4 F0.5 in the CoNLL-14 and 72.9 F0.5 in the BEA-19 test set with an almost 10x online inference speedup over the Transformer-big model, but also it is easily adapted to other languages. Our code is available at


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LibriVoxDeEn: A Corpus for German-to-English Speech Translation and German Speech Recognition
Benjamin Beilharz | Xin Sun | Sariya Karimova | Stefan Riezler
Proceedings of the Twelfth Language Resources and Evaluation Conference

We present a corpus of sentence-aligned triples of German audio, German text, and English translation, based on German audio books. The speech translation data consist of 110 hours of audio material aligned to over 50k parallel sentences. An even larger dataset comprising 547 hours of German speech aligned to German text is available for speech recognition. The audio data is read speech and thus low in disfluencies. The quality of audio and sentence alignments has been checked by a manual evaluation, showing that speech alignment quality is in general very high. The sentence alignment quality is comparable to well-used parallel translation data and can be adjusted by cutoffs on the automatic alignment score. To our knowledge, this corpus is to date the largest resource for German speech recognition and for end-to-end German-to-English speech translation.

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Syntax-Aware Graph Attention Network for Aspect-Level Sentiment Classification
Lianzhe Huang | Xin Sun | Sujian Li | Linhao Zhang | Houfeng Wang
Proceedings of the 28th International Conference on Computational Linguistics

Aspect-level sentiment classification aims to distinguish the sentiment polarities over aspect terms in a sentence. Existing approaches mostly focus on modeling the relationship between the given aspect words and their contexts with attention, and ignore the use of more elaborate knowledge implicit in the context. In this paper, we exploit syntactic awareness to the model by the graph attention network on the dependency tree structure and external pre-training knowledge by BERT language model, which helps to model the interaction between the context and aspect words better. And the subwords of BERT are integrated into the dependency tree graphs, which can obtain more accurate representations of words by graph attention. Experiments demonstrate the effectiveness of our model.