Metric-guided Distillation: Distilling Knowledge from the Metric to Ranker and Retriever for Generative Commonsense Reasoning

Xingwei He, Yeyun Gong*, A. Long Jin, Weizhen Qi, Hang Zhang, Jian Jiao, Bartuer Zhou, Biao Cheng, Siu Ming Yiu, Nan Duan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Commonsense generation aims to generate a realistic sentence describing a daily scene under the given concepts, which is very challenging, since it requires models to have relational reasoning and compositional generalization capabilities. Previous work focuses on retrieving prototype sentences for the provided concepts to assist generation. They first use a sparse retriever to retrieve candidate sentences, then re-rank the candidates with a ranker. However, the candidates returned by their ranker may not be the most relevant sentences, since the ranker treats all candidates equally without considering their relevance to the reference sentences of the given concepts. Another problem is that re-ranking is very expensive, but only using retrievers will seriously degrade the performance of their generation models. To solve these problems, we propose the metric distillation rule to distill knowledge from the metric (e.g., BLEU) to the ranker. We further transfer the critical knowledge summarized by the distilled ranker to the retriever. In this way, the relevance scores of candidate sentences predicted by the ranker and retriever will be more consistent with their quality measured by the metric. Experimental results on the CommonGen benchmark verify the effectiveness of our proposed method: (1) Our generation model with the distilled ranker achieves a new state-of-the-art result. (2) Our generation model with the distilled retriever even surpasses the previous SOTA.

Original languageEnglish
Pages839-852
Number of pages14
Publication statusPublished - 2022
Externally publishedYes
Event2022 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing, EMNLP 2022 - Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
Duration: 7 Dec 202211 Dec 2022

Conference

Conference2022 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing, EMNLP 2022
Country/TerritoryUnited Arab Emirates
CityAbu Dhabi
Period7/12/2211/12/22

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