Self-supervised and Supervised Joint Training for Resource-rich Machine Translation
Proceedings of the 38th International Conference on Machine Learning, PMLR 139:1825-1835, 2021.
Self-supervised pre-training of text representations has been successfully applied to low-resource Neural Machine Translation (NMT). However, it usually fails to achieve notable gains on resource-rich NMT. In this paper, we propose a joint training approach, F2-XEnDec, to combine self-supervised and supervised learning to optimize NMT models. To exploit complementary self-supervised signals for supervised learning, NMT models are trained on examples that are interbred from monolingual and parallel sentences through a new process called crossover encoder-decoder. Experiments on two resource-rich translation benchmarks, WMT’14 English-German and WMT’14 English-French, demonstrate that our approach achieves substantial improvements over several strong baseline methods and obtains a new state of the art of 46.19 BLEU on English-French when incorporating back translation. Results also show that our approach is capable of improving model robustness to input perturbations such as code-switching noise which frequently appears on the social media.