Quick and (not so) dirty: Unsupervised selection of justification sentences for multi-hop question answering

Vikas Yadav, Steven Bethard, Mihai Surdeanu

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

4 Scopus citations

Abstract

We propose an unsupervised strategy for the selection of justification sentences for multi-hop question answering (QA) that (a) maximizes the relevance of the selected sentences, (b) minimizes the overlap between the selected facts, and (c) maximizes the coverage of both question and answer. This unsupervised sentence selection method can be coupled with any supervised QA approach. We show that the sentences selected by our method improve the performance of a state-of-the-art supervised QA model on two multi-hop QA datasets: AI2's Reasoning Challenge (ARC) and Multi-Sentence Reading Comprehension (MultiRC). We obtain new state-of-the-art performance on both datasets among approaches that do not use external resources for training the QA system: 56.82% F1 on ARC (41.24% on Challenge and 64.49% on Easy) and 26.1% EM0 on MultiRC. Our justification sentences have higher quality than the justifications selected by a strong information retrieval baseline, e.g., by 5.4% F1 in MultiRC. We also show that our unsupervised selection of justification sentences is more stable across domains than a state-of-the-art supervised sentence selection method.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationEMNLP-IJCNLP 2019 - 2019 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing and 9th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing, Proceedings of the Conference
PublisherAssociation for Computational Linguistics
Pages2578-2589
Number of pages12
ISBN (Electronic)9781950737901
StatePublished - 2020
Event2019 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing and 9th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing, EMNLP-IJCNLP 2019 - Hong Kong, China
Duration: Nov 3 2019Nov 7 2019

Publication series

NameEMNLP-IJCNLP 2019 - 2019 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing and 9th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing, Proceedings of the Conference

Conference

Conference2019 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing and 9th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing, EMNLP-IJCNLP 2019
CountryChina
CityHong Kong
Period11/3/1911/7/19

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computational Theory and Mathematics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Information Systems

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