Marek Rei


2020

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Multidirectional Associative Optimization of Function-Specific Word Representations
Daniela Gerz | Ivan Vulić | Marek Rei | Roi Reichart | Anna Korhonen
Proceedings of the 58th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics

We present a neural framework for learning associations between interrelated groups of words such as the ones found in Subject-Verb-Object (SVO) structures. Our model induces a joint function-specific word vector space, where vectors of e.g. plausible SVO compositions lie close together. The model retains information about word group membership even in the joint space, and can thereby effectively be applied to a number of tasks reasoning over the SVO structure. We show the robustness and versatility of the proposed framework by reporting state-of-the-art results on the tasks of estimating selectional preference and event similarity. The results indicate that the combinations of representations learned with our task-independent model outperform task-specific architectures from prior work, while reducing the number of parameters by up to 95%.

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Verbal Multiword Expressions for Identification of Metaphor
Omid Rohanian | Marek Rei | Shiva Taslimipoor | Le An Ha
Proceedings of the 58th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics

Metaphor is a linguistic device in which a concept is expressed by mentioning another. Identifying metaphorical expressions, therefore, requires a non-compositional understanding of semantics. Multiword Expressions (MWEs), on the other hand, are linguistic phenomena with varying degrees of semantic opacity and their identification poses a challenge to computational models. This work is the first attempt at analysing the interplay of metaphor and MWEs processing through the design of a neural architecture whereby classification of metaphors is enhanced by informing the model of the presence of MWEs. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first “MWE-aware” metaphor identification system paving the way for further experiments on the complex interactions of these phenomena. The results and analyses show that this proposed architecture reach state-of-the-art on two different established metaphor datasets.

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Grammatical error detection in transcriptions of spoken English
Andrew Caines | Christian Bentz | Kate Knill | Marek Rei | Paula Buttery
Proceedings of the 28th International Conference on Computational Linguistics

We describe the collection of transcription corrections and grammatical error annotations for the CrowdED Corpus of spoken English monologues on business topics. The corpus recordings were crowdsourced from native speakers of English and learners of English with German as their first language. The new transcriptions and annotations are obtained from different crowdworkers: we analyse the 1108 new crowdworker submissions and propose that they can be used for automatic transcription post-editing and grammatical error correction for speech. To further explore the data we train grammatical error detection models with various configurations including pre-trained and contextual word representations as input, additional features and auxiliary objectives, and extra training data from written error-annotated corpora. We find that a model concatenating pre-trained and contextual word representations as input performs best, and that additional information does not lead to further performance gains.

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Seeing Both the Forest and the Trees: Multi-head Attention for Joint Classification on Different Compositional Levels
Miruna Pislar | Marek Rei
Proceedings of the 28th International Conference on Computational Linguistics

In natural languages, words are used in association to construct sentences. It is not words in isolation, but the appropriate use of hierarchical structures that conveys the meaning of the whole sentence. Neural networks have the ability to capture expressive language features; however, insights into the link between words and sentences are difficult to acquire automatically. In this work, we design a deep neural network architecture that explicitly wires lower and higher linguistic components; we then evaluate its ability to perform the same task at different hierarchical levels. Settling on broad text classification tasks, we show that our model, MHAL, learns to simultaneously solve them at different levels of granularity by fluidly transferring knowledge between hierarchies. Using a multi-head attention mechanism to tie the representations between single words and full sentences, MHAL systematically outperforms equivalent models that are not incentivized towards developing compositional representations. Moreover, we demonstrate that, with the proposed architecture, the sentence information flows naturally to individual words, allowing the model to behave like a sequence labeler (which is a lower, word-level task) even without any word supervision, in a zero-shot fashion.

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Grammatical Error Correction in Low Error Density Domains: A New Benchmark and Analyses
Simon Flachs | Ophélie Lacroix | Helen Yannakoudakis | Marek Rei | Anders Søgaard
Proceedings of the 2020 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing (EMNLP)

Evaluation of grammatical error correction (GEC) systems has primarily focused on essays written by non-native learners of English, which however is only part of the full spectrum of GEC applications. We aim to broaden the target domain of GEC and release CWEB, a new benchmark for GEC consisting of website text generated by English speakers of varying levels of proficiency. Website data is a common and important domain that contains far fewer grammatical errors than learner essays, which we show presents a challenge to state-of-the-art GEC systems. We demonstrate that a factor behind this is the inability of systems to rely on a strong internal language model in low error density domains. We hope this work shall facilitate the development of open-domain GEC models that generalize to different topics and genres.

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Proceedings of the 5th Workshop on Representation Learning for NLP
Spandana Gella | Johannes Welbl | Marek Rei | Fabio Petroni | Patrick Lewis | Emma Strubell | Minjoon Seo | Hannaneh Hajishirzi
Proceedings of the 5th Workshop on Representation Learning for NLP

2019

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Semi-Supervised Bootstrapping of Dialogue State Trackers for Task-Oriented Modelling
Bo-Hsiang Tseng | Marek Rei | Paweł Budzianowski | Richard Turner | Bill Byrne | Anna Korhonen
Proceedings of the 2019 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing and the 9th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing (EMNLP-IJCNLP)

Dialogue systems benefit greatly from optimizing on detailed annotations, such as transcribed utterances, internal dialogue state representations and dialogue act labels. However, collecting these annotations is expensive and time-consuming, holding back development in the area of dialogue modelling. In this paper, we investigate semi-supervised learning methods that are able to reduce the amount of required intermediate labelling. We find that by leveraging un-annotated data instead, the amount of turn-level annotations of dialogue state can be significantly reduced when building a neural dialogue system. Our analysis on the MultiWOZ corpus, covering a range of domains and topics, finds that annotations can be reduced by up to 30% while maintaining equivalent system performance. We also describe and evaluate the first end-to-end dialogue model created for the MultiWOZ corpus.

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Modelling the interplay of metaphor and emotion through multitask learning
Verna Dankers | Marek Rei | Martha Lewis | Ekaterina Shutova
Proceedings of the 2019 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing and the 9th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing (EMNLP-IJCNLP)

Metaphors allow us to convey emotion by connecting physical experiences and abstract concepts. The results of previous research in linguistics and psychology suggest that metaphorical phrases tend to be more emotionally evocative than their literal counterparts. In this paper, we investigate the relationship between metaphor and emotion within a computational framework, by proposing the first joint model of these phenomena. We experiment with several multitask learning architectures for this purpose, involving both hard and soft parameter sharing. Our results demonstrate that metaphor identification and emotion prediction mutually benefit from joint learning and our models advance the state of the art in both of these tasks.

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Bad Form: Comparing Context-Based and Form-Based Few-Shot Learning in Distributional Semantic Models
Jeroen Van Hautte | Guy Emerson | Marek Rei
Proceedings of the 2nd Workshop on Deep Learning Approaches for Low-Resource NLP (DeepLo 2019)

Word embeddings are an essential component in a wide range of natural language processing applications. However, distributional semantic models are known to struggle when only a small number of context sentences are available. Several methods have been proposed to obtain higher-quality vectors for these words, leveraging both this context information and sometimes the word forms themselves through a hybrid approach. We show that the current tasks do not suffice to evaluate models that use word-form information, as such models can easily leverage word forms in the training data that are related to word forms in the test data. We introduce 3 new tasks, allowing for a more balanced comparison between models. Furthermore, we show that hyperparameters that have largely been ignored in previous work can consistently improve the performance of both baseline and advanced models, achieving a new state of the art on 4 out of 6 tasks.

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Proceedings of the 4th Workshop on Representation Learning for NLP (RepL4NLP-2019)
Isabelle Augenstein | Spandana Gella | Sebastian Ruder | Katharina Kann | Burcu Can | Johannes Welbl | Alexis Conneau | Xiang Ren | Marek Rei
Proceedings of the 4th Workshop on Representation Learning for NLP (RepL4NLP-2019)

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Context is Key: Grammatical Error Detection with Contextual Word Representations
Samuel Bell | Helen Yannakoudakis | Marek Rei
Proceedings of the Fourteenth Workshop on Innovative Use of NLP for Building Educational Applications

Grammatical error detection (GED) in non-native writing requires systems to identify a wide range of errors in text written by language learners. Error detection as a purely supervised task can be challenging, as GED datasets are limited in size and the label distributions are highly imbalanced. Contextualized word representations offer a possible solution, as they can efficiently capture compositional information in language and can be optimized on large amounts of unsupervised data. In this paper, we perform a systematic comparison of ELMo, BERT and Flair embeddings (Peters et al., 2017; Devlin et al., 2018; Akbik et al., 2018) on a range of public GED datasets, and propose an approach to effectively integrate such representations in current methods, achieving a new state of the art on GED. We further analyze the strengths and weaknesses of different contextual embeddings for the task at hand, and present detailed analyses of their impact on different types of errors.

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Neural and FST-based approaches to grammatical error correction
Zheng Yuan | Felix Stahlberg | Marek Rei | Bill Byrne | Helen Yannakoudakis
Proceedings of the Fourteenth Workshop on Innovative Use of NLP for Building Educational Applications

In this paper, we describe our submission to the BEA 2019 shared task on grammatical error correction. We present a system pipeline that utilises both error detection and correction models. The input text is first corrected by two complementary neural machine translation systems: one using convolutional networks and multi-task learning, and another using a neural Transformer-based system. Training is performed on publicly available data, along with artificial examples generated through back-translation. The n-best lists of these two machine translation systems are then combined and scored using a finite state transducer (FST). Finally, an unsupervised re-ranking system is applied to the n-best output of the FST. The re-ranker uses a number of error detection features to re-rank the FST n-best list and identify the final 1-best correction hypothesis. Our system achieves 66.75% F 0.5 on error correction (ranking 4th), and 82.52% F 0.5 on token-level error detection (ranking 2nd) in the restricted track of the shared task.

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A Simple and Robust Approach to Detecting Subject-Verb Agreement Errors
Simon Flachs | Ophélie Lacroix | Marek Rei | Helen Yannakoudakis | Anders Søgaard
Proceedings of the 2019 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies, Volume 1 (Long and Short Papers)

While rule-based detection of subject-verb agreement (SVA) errors is sensitive to syntactic parsing errors and irregularities and exceptions to the main rules, neural sequential labelers have a tendency to overfit their training data. We observe that rule-based error generation is less sensitive to syntactic parsing errors and irregularities than error detection and explore a simple, yet efficient approach to getting the best of both worlds: We train neural sequential labelers on the combination of large volumes of silver standard data, obtained through rule-based error generation, and gold standard data. We show that our simple protocol leads to more robust detection of SVA errors on both in-domain and out-of-domain data, as well as in the context of other errors and long-distance dependencies; and across four standard benchmarks, the induced model on average achieves a new state of the art.

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CAMsterdam at SemEval-2019 Task 6: Neural and graph-based feature extraction for the identification of offensive tweets
Guy Aglionby | Chris Davis | Pushkar Mishra | Andrew Caines | Helen Yannakoudakis | Marek Rei | Ekaterina Shutova | Paula Buttery
Proceedings of the 13th International Workshop on Semantic Evaluation

We describe the CAMsterdam team entry to the SemEval-2019 Shared Task 6 on offensive language identification in Twitter data. Our proposed model learns to extract textual features using a multi-layer recurrent network, and then performs text classification using gradient-boosted decision trees (GBDT). A self-attention architecture enables the model to focus on the most relevant areas in the text. In order to enrich input representations, we use node2vec to learn globally optimised embeddings for hashtags, which are then given as additional features to the GBDT classifier. Our best model obtains 78.79% macro F1-score on detecting offensive language (subtask A), 66.32% on categorising offence types (targeted/untargeted; subtask B), and 55.36% on identifying the target of offence (subtask C).

2018

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Sequence Classification with Human Attention
Maria Barrett | Joachim Bingel | Nora Hollenstein | Marek Rei | Anders Søgaard
Proceedings of the 22nd Conference on Computational Natural Language Learning

Learning attention functions requires large volumes of data, but many NLP tasks simulate human behavior, and in this paper, we show that human attention really does provide a good inductive bias on many attention functions in NLP. Specifically, we use estimated human attention derived from eye-tracking corpora to regularize attention functions in recurrent neural networks. We show substantial improvements across a range of tasks, including sentiment analysis, grammatical error detection, and detection of abusive language.

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Zero-Shot Sequence Labeling: Transferring Knowledge from Sentences to Tokens
Marek Rei | Anders Søgaard
Proceedings of the 2018 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies, Volume 1 (Long Papers)

Can attention- or gradient-based visualization techniques be used to infer token-level labels for binary sequence tagging problems, using networks trained only on sentence-level labels? We construct a neural network architecture based on soft attention, train it as a binary sentence classifier and evaluate against token-level annotation on four different datasets. Inferring token labels from a network provides a method for quantitatively evaluating what the model is learning, along with generating useful feedback in assistance systems. Our results indicate that attention-based methods are able to predict token-level labels more accurately, compared to gradient-based methods, sometimes even rivaling the supervised oracle network.

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Variable Typing: Assigning Meaning to Variables in Mathematical Text
Yiannos Stathopoulos | Simon Baker | Marek Rei | Simone Teufel
Proceedings of the 2018 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies, Volume 1 (Long Papers)

Information about the meaning of mathematical variables in text is useful in NLP/IR tasks such as symbol disambiguation, topic modeling and mathematical information retrieval (MIR). We introduce variable typing, the task of assigning one mathematical type (multi-word technical terms referring to mathematical concepts) to each variable in a sentence of mathematical text. As part of this work, we also introduce a new annotated data set composed of 33,524 data points extracted from scientific documents published on arXiv. Our intrinsic evaluation demonstrates that our data set is sufficient to successfully train and evaluate current classifiers from three different model architectures. The best performing model is evaluated on an extrinsic task: MIR, by producing a typed formula index. Our results show that the best performing MIR models make use of our typed index, compared to a formula index only containing raw symbols, thereby demonstrating the usefulness of variable typing.

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Scoring Lexical Entailment with a Supervised Directional Similarity Network
Marek Rei | Daniela Gerz | Ivan Vulić
Proceedings of the 56th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 2: Short Papers)

We present the Supervised Directional Similarity Network, a novel neural architecture for learning task-specific transformation functions on top of general-purpose word embeddings. Relying on only a limited amount of supervision from task-specific scores on a subset of the vocabulary, our architecture is able to generalise and transform a general-purpose distributional vector space to model the relation of lexical entailment. Experiments show excellent performance on scoring graded lexical entailment, raising the state-of-the-art on the HyperLex dataset by approximately 25%.

2017

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Semi-supervised Multitask Learning for Sequence Labeling
Marek Rei
Proceedings of the 55th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 1: Long Papers)

We propose a sequence labeling framework with a secondary training objective, learning to predict surrounding words for every word in the dataset. This language modeling objective incentivises the system to learn general-purpose patterns of semantic and syntactic composition, which are also useful for improving accuracy on different sequence labeling tasks. The architecture was evaluated on a range of datasets, covering the tasks of error detection in learner texts, named entity recognition, chunking and POS-tagging. The novel language modeling objective provided consistent performance improvements on every benchmark, without requiring any additional annotated or unannotated data.

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Auxiliary Objectives for Neural Error Detection Models
Marek Rei | Helen Yannakoudakis
Proceedings of the 12th Workshop on Innovative Use of NLP for Building Educational Applications

We investigate the utility of different auxiliary objectives and training strategies within a neural sequence labeling approach to error detection in learner writing. Auxiliary costs provide the model with additional linguistic information, allowing it to learn general-purpose compositional features that can then be exploited for other objectives. Our experiments show that a joint learning approach trained with parallel labels on in-domain data improves performance over the previous best error detection system. While the resulting model has the same number of parameters, the additional objectives allow it to be optimised more efficiently and achieve better performance.

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An Error-Oriented Approach to Word Embedding Pre-Training
Youmna Farag | Marek Rei | Ted Briscoe
Proceedings of the 12th Workshop on Innovative Use of NLP for Building Educational Applications

We propose a novel word embedding pre-training approach that exploits writing errors in learners’ scripts. We compare our method to previous models that tune the embeddings based on script scores and the discrimination between correct and corrupt word contexts in addition to the generic commonly-used embeddings pre-trained on large corpora. The comparison is achieved by using the aforementioned models to bootstrap a neural network that learns to predict a holistic score for scripts. Furthermore, we investigate augmenting our model with error corrections and monitor the impact on performance. Our results show that our error-oriented approach outperforms other comparable ones which is further demonstrated when training on more data. Additionally, extending the model with corrections provides further performance gains when data sparsity is an issue.

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Detecting Off-topic Responses to Visual Prompts
Marek Rei
Proceedings of the 12th Workshop on Innovative Use of NLP for Building Educational Applications

Automated methods for essay scoring have made great progress in recent years, achieving accuracies very close to human annotators. However, a known weakness of such automated scorers is not taking into account the semantic relevance of the submitted text. While there is existing work on detecting answer relevance given a textual prompt, very little previous research has been done to incorporate visual writing prompts. We propose a neural architecture and several extensions for detecting off-topic responses to visual prompts and evaluate it on a dataset of texts written by language learners.

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Artificial Error Generation with Machine Translation and Syntactic Patterns
Marek Rei | Mariano Felice | Zheng Yuan | Ted Briscoe
Proceedings of the 12th Workshop on Innovative Use of NLP for Building Educational Applications

Shortage of available training data is holding back progress in the area of automated error detection. This paper investigates two alternative methods for artificially generating writing errors, in order to create additional resources. We propose treating error generation as a machine translation task, where grammatically correct text is translated to contain errors. In addition, we explore a system for extracting textual patterns from an annotated corpus, which can then be used to insert errors into grammatically correct sentences. Our experiments show that the inclusion of artificially generated errors significantly improves error detection accuracy on both FCE and CoNLL 2014 datasets.

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Grasping the Finer Point: A Supervised Similarity Network for Metaphor Detection
Marek Rei | Luana Bulat | Douwe Kiela | Ekaterina Shutova
Proceedings of the 2017 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

The ubiquity of metaphor in our everyday communication makes it an important problem for natural language understanding. Yet, the majority of metaphor processing systems to date rely on hand-engineered features and there is still no consensus in the field as to which features are optimal for this task. In this paper, we present the first deep learning architecture designed to capture metaphorical composition. Our results demonstrate that it outperforms the existing approaches in the metaphor identification task.

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Neural Sequence-Labelling Models for Grammatical Error Correction
Helen Yannakoudakis | Marek Rei | Øistein E. Andersen | Zheng Yuan
Proceedings of the 2017 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

We propose an approach to N-best list reranking using neural sequence-labelling models. We train a compositional model for error detection that calculates the probability of each token in a sentence being correct or incorrect, utilising the full sentence as context. Using the error detection model, we then re-rank the N best hypotheses generated by statistical machine translation systems. Our approach achieves state-of-the-art results on error correction for three different datasets, and it has the additional advantage of only using a small set of easily computed features that require no linguistic input.

2016

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Attending to Characters in Neural Sequence Labeling Models
Marek Rei | Gamal Crichton | Sampo Pyysalo
Proceedings of COLING 2016, the 26th International Conference on Computational Linguistics: Technical Papers

Sequence labeling architectures use word embeddings for capturing similarity, but suffer when handling previously unseen or rare words. We investigate character-level extensions to such models and propose a novel architecture for combining alternative word representations. By using an attention mechanism, the model is able to dynamically decide how much information to use from a word- or character-level component. We evaluated different architectures on a range of sequence labeling datasets, and character-level extensions were found to improve performance on every benchmark. In addition, the proposed attention-based architecture delivered the best results even with a smaller number of trainable parameters.

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Automatic Text Scoring Using Neural Networks
Dimitrios Alikaniotis | Helen Yannakoudakis | Marek Rei
Proceedings of the 54th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 1: Long Papers)

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Compositional Sequence Labeling Models for Error Detection in Learner Writing
Marek Rei | Helen Yannakoudakis
Proceedings of the 54th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 1: Long Papers)

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Sentence Similarity Measures for Fine-Grained Estimation of Topical Relevance in Learner Essays
Marek Rei | Ronan Cummins
Proceedings of the 11th Workshop on Innovative Use of NLP for Building Educational Applications

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A Joint Model for Word Embedding and Word Morphology
Kris Cao | Marek Rei
Proceedings of the 1st Workshop on Representation Learning for NLP

2015

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Online Representation Learning in Recurrent Neural Language Models
Marek Rei
Proceedings of the 2015 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

2014

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Looking for Hyponyms in Vector Space
Marek Rei | Ted Briscoe
Proceedings of the Eighteenth Conference on Computational Natural Language Learning

2013

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Parser lexicalisation through self-learning
Marek Rei | Ted Briscoe
Proceedings of the 2013 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies

2011

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Unsupervised Entailment Detection between Dependency Graph Fragments
Marek Rei | Ted Briscoe
Proceedings of BioNLP 2011 Workshop

2010

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Combining Manual Rules and Supervised Learning for Hedge Cue and Scope Detection
Marek Rei | Ted Briscoe
Proceedings of the Fourteenth Conference on Computational Natural Language Learning – Shared Task