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A Weakly-supervised Approach to Argumentative Zoning of Scientific Documents

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Argumentative Zoning (AZ) – analysis of the argumentative structure of a scientific paper – has proved useful for a number of information access tasks. Current approaches to AZ rely on supervised machine learning (ML). Requiring large amounts of annotated data, these approaches are expensive to develop and port to different domains and tasks. A potential solution to this problem is to use weaklysupervised ML instead. We investigate the performance of four weakly-supervised classifiers on scientific abstract data annotated for multiple AZ classes. Our best classifier based on the combination of active learning and selftraining outperforms our best supervised classifier, yielding a high accuracy of 81% when using just 10% of the labeled data. This result suggests that weakly-supervised learning could be employed to improve the practical applicability and portability of AZ across different information access tasks.

This talk is part of the NLIP Seminar Series series.

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