LIN 389C Schedule

Course outline Fall 2020

This semester we have one meeting per week. Each week, unless noted otherwise, we use one half of the class to discuss the topic of the week, and we use the other half for a round-table discussing people's research.

Week 1: Aug 28

  • Plan for the semester: Which topics to focus on, other activities
  • Extended round table:
    • Research results from the summer
    • Research plans for the fall, publication plans

Week 2: Sep 4: Rational Speech Acts

We are reading an introduction to Rational Speech Acts:
Goodman and Frank, Pragmatic Language Interpretation as Probabilistic Inference, Trends in CogSc 2016, Vol 20 No. 11,

(If you are interested in one of the probabilistic programming languages that Goodman and colleagues have developed to use with RSA, there is an intro to RSA with WebPPL code at WebPPL is built on top of javascript.)

Venkat will lead the discussion.

Week 3: Sep 11: Rational Speech Acts and metaphor

We are reading a paper that applies RSA to metaphor interpretation:
Kao, Bergen and Goodman, Formalizing the Pragmatics of Metaphor Understanding. CogSci conference, 2014.

and another paper using a similar technique:

Degen, Tessler, Goodman, Wonky worlds: Listeners revise world knowledge when utterances are odd, CogScin conference, 2015.

Gabriella will lead the discussion.

Week 4: Sep 18: Metaphor

We will hear from Gabriella about her thesis work on metaphor.

As a supplement, we're reading the following paper that introduces a new metaphor dataset:

Omnia Zayed, John P. McCrae, Paul Buitelaar, 2020. Figure Me Out: A Gold Standard Dataset for Metaphor Interpretation, LREC 2020.

Joel pointed out this paper on the use of Bayesian approaches in psychology: Matt Jones and Brad Love, Bayesian Fundamentalismor Enlightenment? On the explanatorystatus and theoretical contributions ofBayesian models of cognition. We'll briefly talk about this in class.

Week 5: Sep 25: Background knowledge in neural models

We are reading the KnowBERT paper:
Matthew E. Peters, Mark Neumann, Robert L. Logan IV, Roy Schwartz, Vidur Joshi, Sameer Singh, Noah A. Smith, Knowledge Enhanced Contextual Word Representations, EMNLP 2019,

Ching-Da will lead the discussion.

Week 6: Oct 2: Commonsense knowledge in neural models

We are reading the paper on self-talk and language models, a very useful technique:
Vered Shwartz, Peter West,  Ronan Le Bras, Chandra Bhagavatula, and Yejin Choi, Unsupervised Commonsense Question Answering with Self-Talk,

Yejin will lead the discussion.

Week 7: Oct 9: NLP and ethics: data collection

We are reading: Eun Seo Jo, and Timnit Gebru (2019): Lessons from Archives: Strategies for Collecting Sociocultural Data in Machine Learning,

Joel will lead the discussion.

Week 8: Oct 16: NLP and ethics: crowdsourcing

We are reading: Turking in a global labour market,

Venkat will lead the discussion.

Here is an additional paper we could discuss: Data-Driven Analysis of Workers’Earnings on Amazon Mechanical Turk,

Please submit the draft of your course paper by today. Please just send me the paper by email.
The suggested length for the draft is that of an extended abstract, up to 4 pages. Please include a discussion of background literature, work done so far, and a sketch of planned work.

Week 9: Oct 23: practice talks

Both Venkat and Gabriella will give practice talks for their upcoming conference presentations. Venkat is presenting at EMNLP, and Gabriella at CoNLL.

Week 10: Oct 30: Knowledge graphs

We are reading: Bordes, Antoine, Nicolas Usunier, Alberto Garcia-Duran, Jason Weston, and Oksana Yakhnenko. “Translating Embeddings for Modeling Multi-Relational Data,” NeurIPS 2013.

Along with a blog post summarizing lots of follow-up work with very similar names:

Ching-Da is leading the discussion.

Week 11: Nov 6: Knowledge graphs

We will be reading: A Simple Approach to Case-Based Reasoning in Knowledge Bases (Das et al., AKBC (best paper runner-up) 2020):

Yejin is leading the discussion.

Week 12: Nov 13: Pragmatics

We are reading: Nie, Cohn-Gordon and Potts, Pragmatic Issue-Sensitive Image Captioning,

Joel is leading the discussion.

Week 13: Nov 20

Discourse workshop!

Week 14: Nov 26: Thanksgiving break

Week 15: Dec 4

  • Extended round table: plans for research going forward
  • Research course in Spring 2021: bring ideas for material you want to learn about

Final course project papers due: Dec 4, 2020.