Deep RNNs encode soft hierarchical syntax

Terra Blevins, Omer Levy, Luke Zettlemoyer

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

Abstract

We present a set of experiments to demonstrate that deep recurrent neural networks (RNNs) learn internal representations that capture soft hierarchical notions of syntax from highly varied supervision. We consider four syntax tasks at different depths of the parse tree; for each word, we predict its part of speech as well as the first (parent), second (grandparent) and third level (great-grandparent) constituent labels that appear above it. These predictions are made from representations produced at different depths in networks that are pretrained with one of four objectives: dependency parsing, semantic role labeling, machine translation, or language modeling. In every case, we find a correspondence between network depth and syntactic depth, suggesting that a soft syntactic hierarchy emerges. This effect is robust across all conditions, indicating that the models encode significant amounts of syntax even in the absence of an explicit syntactic training supervision.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationACL 2018 - 56th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics, Proceedings of the Conference (Short Papers)
PublisherAssociation for Computational Linguistics (ACL)
Pages14-19
Number of pages6
ISBN (Electronic)9781948087346
DOIs
StatePublished - 2018
Externally publishedYes
Event56th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics, ACL 2018 - Melbourne, Australia
Duration: 15 Jul 201820 Jul 2018

Publication series

NameACL 2018 - 56th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics, Proceedings of the Conference (Long Papers)
Volume2

Conference

Conference56th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics, ACL 2018
Country/TerritoryAustralia
CityMelbourne
Period15/07/1820/07/18

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Deep RNNs encode soft hierarchical syntax'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this