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FETA: A Benchmark for Few-Sample Task Transfer in Open-Domain Dialogue

2022-05-12 17:59:00
Alon Albalak, Yi-Lin Tuan, Pegah Jandaghi, Connor Pryor, Luke Yoffe, Deepak Ramachandran, Lise Getoor, Jay Pujara, William Yang Wang


Task transfer, transferring knowledge contained in related tasks, holds the promise of reducing the quantity of labeled data required to fine-tune language models. Dialogue understanding encompasses many diverse tasks, yet task transfer has not been thoroughly studied in conversational AI. This work explores conversational task transfer by introducing FETA: a benchmark for few-sample task transfer in open-domain dialogue. FETA contains two underlying sets of conversations upon which there are 10 and 7 tasks annotated, enabling the study of intra-dataset task transfer; task transfer without domain adaptation. We utilize three popular language models and three learning algorithms to analyze the transferability between 132 source-target task pairs and create a baseline for future work. We run experiments in the single- and multi-source settings and report valuable findings, e.g., most performance trends are model-specific, and span extraction and multiple-choice tasks benefit the most from task transfer. In addition to task transfer, FETA can be a valuable resource for future research into the efficiency and generalizability of pre-training datasets and model architectures, as well as for learning settings such as continual and multitask learning.

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