Data Augmentation for Spoken Language Understanding via Pretrained Language Models

Baolin Peng, Chenguang Zhu, Michael Zeng, Jianfeng Gao

The training of spoken language understanding (SLU) models often faces the problem of data scarcity. In this paper, we put forward a data augmentation method using pretrained language models to boost the variability and accuracy of generated utterances. Furthermore, we investigate and propose solutions to two previously overlooked semi-supervised learning scenarios of data scarcity in SLU: i) Rich-in-Ontology: ontology information with numerous valid dialogue acts is given; ii) Rich-in-Utterance: a large number of unlabelled utterances are available. Empirical results show that our method can produce synthetic training data that boosts the performance of language understanding models in various scenarios.

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