Utilizing Bidirectional Encoder Representations from Transformers for Answer Selection

Research paper by Md Tahmid Rahman Laskar, Enamul Hoque, Jimmy Xiangji Huang

Indexed on: 17 Nov '20Published on: 13 Nov '20Published in: arXiv - Computer Science - Computation and Language


Pre-training a transformer-based model for the language modeling task in a large dataset and then fine-tuning it for downstream tasks has been found very useful in recent years. One major advantage of such pre-trained language models is that they can effectively absorb the context of each word in a sentence. However, for tasks such as the answer selection task, the pre-trained language models have not been extensively used yet. To investigate their effectiveness in such tasks, in this paper, we adopt the pre-trained Bidirectional Encoder Representations from Transformer (BERT) language model and fine-tune it on two Question Answering (QA) datasets and three Community Question Answering (CQA) datasets for the answer selection task. We find that fine-tuning the BERT model for the answer selection task is very effective and observe a maximum improvement of 13.1% in the QA datasets and 18.7% in the CQA datasets compared to the previous state-of-the-art.