Sign In

Leveraging Large Language Models as Crowdsourced Annotators to Efficiently Process and Analyze Content

Core Concepts
Large language models, such as GPT-3.5, can serve as effective crowdsourced annotators when provided with sufficient guidance and demonstrated examples, outperforming or matching human annotators on various NLP tasks.
The paper proposes AnnoLLM, an annotation system powered by large language models (LLMs) like GPT-3.5, which adopts a two-step "explain-then-annotate" approach. First, the LLM is prompted to provide explanations for why the specific ground truth answer/label was assigned for a given example. Then, the LLM is employed to annotate unlabeled data using a few-shot chain-of-thought prompt that includes the self-generated explanations. The experiment results on three tasks - user input and keyword relevance assessment, BoolQ, and WiC - demonstrate that AnnoLLM surpasses or performs on par with crowdsourced annotators. Furthermore, the paper introduces the first conversation-based information retrieval (ConIR) dataset, which is constructed using AnnoLLM and exhibits high quality based on human evaluation.
"Many natural language processing (NLP) tasks rely on labeled data to train machine learning models with high performance." "Labeled data refers to a dataset that has been manually annotated with predefined target labels or categories." "The process of labeling data is typically done by human annotators under specific guidelines and criteria on how to assign labels to each instance in the dataset." "Previous works have shown that LLMs, such as GPT-3 and PaLM, achieve impressive results in many downstream tasks without requiring large-scale task-specific data or parameter tuning, but only with a few examples as instructions."
"Can GPT-3.5 potentially replace crowdsourced annotators?" "Providing detailed instructions is crucial for crowdsourced workers to annotate data, as it helps them better understand task requirements and annotation standards, ultimately improving the quality and accuracy of annotated data." "Recent research (Wei et al., 2022) has discovered that adding human written rationales to demonstrated examples, called as chain-of-thought (CoT), can elicit LLMs' reasoning ability, thus gaining improvements on reasoning tasks."

Key Insights Distilled From

by Xingwei He,Z... at 04-08-2024

Deeper Inquiries

How can the explain-then-annotate approach be extended to other types of tasks beyond classification, such as generation or structured prediction?

The explain-then-annotate approach can be extended to tasks beyond classification by adapting the process to suit the specific requirements of each task. For tasks involving generation, such as text generation or image captioning, the LLM can first generate an explanation for why a certain output was chosen, providing insights into the reasoning behind the generated content. This explanation can then be used to guide the generation process and ensure coherence and relevance in the output. For structured prediction tasks, such as named entity recognition or semantic role labeling, the LLM can be prompted to explain the rationale behind predicting certain labels or structures. This can help in understanding the model's decision-making process and improve the accuracy and consistency of the predictions. By incorporating explanations into the annotation process, LLMs can effectively handle a wide range of tasks beyond classification, enhancing their versatility and performance.

What are the potential limitations or drawbacks of using LLMs as crowdsourced annotators, and how can they be addressed?

One potential limitation of using LLMs as crowdsourced annotators is the lack of domain-specific knowledge and context understanding. LLMs may struggle with tasks that require specialized domain expertise or nuanced understanding of specific topics. Additionally, LLMs may exhibit biases or generate incorrect explanations, leading to inaccurate annotations. To address these limitations, it is essential to provide comprehensive and detailed task descriptions to LLMs, along with relevant examples and guidelines. Fine-tuning the LLM on domain-specific data can also improve its performance in specialized tasks. Additionally, incorporating human oversight and validation mechanisms can help identify and correct errors in the annotations generated by LLMs. Continuous monitoring and feedback loops can further refine the LLM's performance as an annotator.

Given the rapid progress in large language models, how might the role and capabilities of LLMs as data annotators evolve in the future, and what implications could this have for the field of natural language processing?

As large language models continue to advance, their role as data annotators is likely to become more prominent and sophisticated. LLMs may evolve to handle a broader range of annotation tasks across different domains and languages, offering more accurate and efficient annotations. The capabilities of LLMs in generating explanations and reasoning behind annotations may also improve, enhancing the transparency and interpretability of machine learning models. In the future, LLMs could potentially automate the entire data annotation process, from understanding task requirements to generating high-quality annotations. This could significantly reduce the time and cost associated with manual annotation, making data labeling more accessible and scalable. The implications for the field of natural language processing are profound, as LLMs can accelerate research and development in NLP by providing reliable annotations for training and evaluation datasets. Additionally, the use of LLMs as annotators can lead to the creation of more diverse and comprehensive datasets, enabling the development of more robust and accurate NLP models.