Yifan Yang


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An Empirical Study of Sentiment-Enhanced Pre-Training for Aspect-Based Sentiment Analysis
Yice Zhang | Yifan Yang | Bin Liang | Shiwei Chen | Bing Qin | Ruifeng Xu
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: ACL 2023

Aspect-Based Sentiment Analysis (ABSA) aims to recognize fine-grained opinions and sentiments of users, which is an important problem in sentiment analysis. Recent work has shown that Sentiment-enhanced Pre-Training (SPT) can substantially improve the performance of various ABSA tasks. However, there is currently a lack of comprehensive evaluation and fair comparison of existing SPT approaches. Therefore, this paper performs an empirical study to investigate the effectiveness of different SPT approaches. First, we develop an effective knowledge-mining method and leverage it to build a large-scale knowledge-annotated SPT corpus. Second, we systematically analyze the impact of integrating sentiment knowledge and other linguistic knowledge in pre-training. For each type of sentiment knowledge, we also examine and compare multiple integration methods. Finally, we conduct extensive experiments on a wide range of ABSA tasks to see how much SPT can facilitate the understanding of aspect-level sentiments.

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Target-to-Source Augmentation for Aspect Sentiment Triplet Extraction
Yice Zhang | Yifan Yang | Meng Li | Bin Liang | Shiwei Chen | Ruifeng Xu
Proceedings of the 2023 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Aspect Sentiment Triplet Extraction (ASTE) is an important task in sentiment analysis, aiming to extract aspect-level opinions and sentiments from user-generated reviews. The fine-grained nature of ASTE incurs a high annotation cost, while the scarcity of annotated data limits the performance of existing methods. This paper exploits data augmentation to address this issue. Traditional augmentation methods typically modify the input sentences of existing samples via heuristic rules or language models, which have shown success in text classification tasks. However, applying these methods to fine-grained tasks like ASTE poses challenges in generating diverse augmented samples while maintaining alignment between modified sentences and origin labels. Therefore, this paper proposes a target-to-source augmentation approach for ASTE. Our approach focuses on learning a generator that can directly generate new sentences based on labels and syntactic templates. With this generator, we can generate a substantial number of diverse augmented samples by mixing labels and syntactic templates from different samples. Besides, to ensure the quality of the generated sentence, we introduce fluency and alignment discriminators to provide feedback on the generated sentence and then use this feedback to optimize the generator via a reinforcement learning framework. Experiments demonstrate that our approach significantly enhances the performance of existing ASTE models.


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HITSZ-HLT at SemEval-2022 Task 10: A Span-Relation Extraction Framework for Structured Sentiment Analysis
Yihui Li | Yifan Yang | Yice Zhang | Ruifeng Xu
Proceedings of the 16th International Workshop on Semantic Evaluation (SemEval-2022)

This paper describes our system that participated in the SemEval-2022 Task 10: Structured Sentiment Analysis, which aims to extract opinion tuples from texts.A full opinion tuple generally contains an opinion holder, an opinion target, the sentiment expression, and the corresponding polarity. The complex structure of the opinion tuple makes the task challenging. To address this task, we formalize it as a span-relation extraction problem and propose a two-stage extraction framework accordingly. In the first stage, we employ the span module to enumerate spans and then recognize the type of every span. In the second stage, we employ the relation module to determine the relation between spans. Our system achieves competitive results and ranks among the top-10 systems in almost subtasks.

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Boundary-Driven Table-Filling for Aspect Sentiment Triplet Extraction
Yice Zhang | Yifan Yang | Yihui Li | Bin Liang | Shiwei Chen | Yixue Dang | Min Yang | Ruifeng Xu
Proceedings of the 2022 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Aspect Sentiment Triplet Extraction (ASTE) aims to extract the aspect terms along with the corresponding opinion terms and the expressed sentiments in the review, which is an important task in sentiment analysis. Previous research efforts generally address the ASTE task in an end-to-end fashion through the table-filling formalization, in which the triplets are represented by a two-dimensional (2D) table of word-pair relations. Under this formalization, a term-level relation is decomposed into multiple independent word-level relations, which leads to relation inconsistency and boundary insensitivity in the face of multi-word aspect terms and opinion terms. To overcome these issues, we propose Boundary-Driven Table-Filling (BDTF), which represents each triplet as a relation region in the 2D table and transforms the ASTE task into detection and classification of relation regions. We also notice that the quality of the table representation greatly affects the performance of BDTF. Therefore, we develop an effective relation representation learning approach to learn the table representation, which can fully exploit both word-to-word interactions and relation-to-relation interactions. Experiments on several public benchmarks show that the proposed approach achieves state-of-the-art performances.


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PRGC: Potential Relation and Global Correspondence Based Joint Relational Triple Extraction
Hengyi Zheng | Rui Wen | Xi Chen | Yifan Yang | Yunyan Zhang | Ziheng Zhang | Ningyu Zhang | Bin Qin | Xu Ming | Yefeng Zheng
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)

Joint extraction of entities and relations from unstructured texts is a crucial task in information extraction. Recent methods achieve considerable performance but still suffer from some inherent limitations, such as redundancy of relation prediction, poor generalization of span-based extraction and inefficiency. In this paper, we decompose this task into three subtasks, Relation Judgement, Entity Extraction and Subject-object Alignment from a novel perspective and then propose a joint relational triple extraction framework based on Potential Relation and Global Correspondence (PRGC). Specifically, we design a component to predict potential relations, which constrains the following entity extraction to the predicted relation subset rather than all relations; then a relation-specific sequence tagging component is applied to handle the overlapping problem between subjects and objects; finally, a global correspondence component is designed to align the subject and object into a triple with low-complexity. Extensive experiments show that PRGC achieves state-of-the-art performance on public benchmarks with higher efficiency and delivers consistent performance gain on complex scenarios of overlapping triples. The source code has been submitted as the supplementary material and will be made publicly available after the blind review.