Shamil Chollampatt


Can Automatic Post-Editing Improve NMT?
Shamil Chollampatt | Raymond Hendy Susanto | Liling Tan | Ewa Szymanska
Proceedings of the 2020 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing (EMNLP)

Automatic post-editing (APE) aims to improve machine translations, thereby reducing human post-editing effort. APE has had notable success when used with statistical machine translation (SMT) systems but has not been as successful over neural machine translation (NMT) systems. This has raised questions on the relevance of APE task in the current scenario. However, the training of APE models has been heavily reliant on large-scale artificial corpora combined with only limited human post-edited data. We hypothesize that APE models have been underperforming in improving NMT translations due to the lack of adequate supervision. To ascertain our hypothesis, we compile a larger corpus of human post-edits of English to German NMT. We empirically show that a state-of-art neural APE model trained on this corpus can significantly improve a strong in-domain NMT system, challenging the current understanding in the field. We further investigate the effects of varying training data sizes, using artificial training data, and domain specificity for the APE task. We release this new corpus under CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 license at

Lexically Constrained Neural Machine Translation with Levenshtein Transformer
Raymond Hendy Susanto | Shamil Chollampatt | Liling Tan
Proceedings of the 58th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics

This paper proposes a simple and effective algorithm for incorporating lexical constraints in neural machine translation. Previous work either required re-training existing models with the lexical constraints or incorporating them during beam search decoding with significantly higher computational overheads. Leveraging the flexibility and speed of a recently proposed Levenshtein Transformer model (Gu et al., 2019), our method injects terminology constraints at inference time without any impact on decoding speed. Our method does not require any modification to the training procedure and can be easily applied at runtime with custom dictionaries. Experiments on English-German WMT datasets show that our approach improves an unconstrained baseline and previous approaches.


Cross-Sentence Grammatical Error Correction
Shamil Chollampatt | Weiqi Wang | Hwee Tou Ng
Proceedings of the 57th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics

Automatic grammatical error correction (GEC) research has made remarkable progress in the past decade. However, all existing approaches to GEC correct errors by considering a single sentence alone and ignoring crucial cross-sentence context. Some errors can only be corrected reliably using cross-sentence context and models can also benefit from the additional contextual information in correcting other errors. In this paper, we address this serious limitation of existing approaches and improve strong neural encoder-decoder models by appropriately modeling wider contexts. We employ an auxiliary encoder that encodes previous sentences and incorporate the encoding in the decoder via attention and gating mechanisms. Our approach results in statistically significant improvements in overall GEC performance over strong baselines across multiple test sets. Analysis of our cross-sentence GEC model on a synthetic dataset shows high performance in verb tense corrections that require cross-sentence context.


Neural Quality Estimation of Grammatical Error Correction
Shamil Chollampatt | Hwee Tou Ng
Proceedings of the 2018 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Grammatical error correction (GEC) systems deployed in language learning environments are expected to accurately correct errors in learners’ writing. However, in practice, they often produce spurious corrections and fail to correct many errors, thereby misleading learners. This necessitates the estimation of the quality of output sentences produced by GEC systems so that instructors can selectively intervene and re-correct the sentences which are poorly corrected by the system and ensure that learners get accurate feedback. We propose the first neural approach to automatic quality estimation of GEC output sentences that does not employ any hand-crafted features. Our system is trained in a supervised manner on learner sentences and corresponding GEC system outputs with quality score labels computed using human-annotated references. Our neural quality estimation models for GEC show significant improvements over a strong feature-based baseline. We also show that a state-of-the-art GEC system can be improved when quality scores are used as features for re-ranking the N-best candidates.

A Reassessment of Reference-Based Grammatical Error Correction Metrics
Shamil Chollampatt | Hwee Tou Ng
Proceedings of the 27th International Conference on Computational Linguistics

Several metrics have been proposed for evaluating grammatical error correction (GEC) systems based on grammaticality, fluency, and adequacy of the output sentences. Previous studies of the correlation of these metrics with human quality judgments were inconclusive, due to the lack of appropriate significance tests, discrepancies in the methods, and choice of datasets used. In this paper, we re-evaluate reference-based GEC metrics by measuring the system-level correlations with humans on a large dataset of human judgments of GEC outputs, and by properly conducting statistical significance tests. Our results show no significant advantage of GLEU over MaxMatch (M2), contradicting previous studies that claim GLEU to be superior. For a finer-grained analysis, we additionally evaluate these metrics for their agreement with human judgments at the sentence level. Our sentence-level analysis indicates that comparing GLEU and M2, one metric may be more useful than the other depending on the scenario. We further qualitatively analyze these metrics and our findings show that apart from being less interpretable and non-deterministic, GLEU also produces counter-intuitive scores in commonly occurring test examples.


Connecting the Dots: Towards Human-Level Grammatical Error Correction
Shamil Chollampatt | Hwee Tou Ng
Proceedings of the 12th Workshop on Innovative Use of NLP for Building Educational Applications

We build a grammatical error correction (GEC) system primarily based on the state-of-the-art statistical machine translation (SMT) approach, using task-specific features and tuning, and further enhance it with the modeling power of neural network joint models. The SMT-based system is weak in generalizing beyond patterns seen during training and lacks granularity below the word level. To address this issue, we incorporate a character-level SMT component targeting the misspelled words that the original SMT-based system fails to correct. Our final system achieves 53.14% F 0.5 score on the benchmark CoNLL-2014 test set, an improvement of 3.62% F 0.5 over the best previous published score.


Adapting Grammatical Error Correction Based on the Native Language of Writers with Neural Network Joint Models
Shamil Chollampatt | Duc Tam Hoang | Hwee Tou Ng
Proceedings of the 2016 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing