Improved Out-of-Scope Intent Classification with Dual Encoding and Threshold-based Re-Classification

Hossam M. Zawbaa, Wael Rashwan,Sourav Dutta,Haytham Assem

International Conference on Computational Linguistics(2024)

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Detecting out-of-scope user utterances is essential for task-oriented dialogues and intent classification. Current methodologies face difficulties with the unpredictable distribution of outliers and often rely on assumptions about data distributions. We present the Dual Encoder for Threshold-Based Re-Classification (DETER) to address these challenges. This end-to-end framework efficiently detects out-of-scope intents without requiring assumptions on data distributions or additional post-processing steps. The core of DETER utilizes dual text encoders, the Universal Sentence Encoder (USE) and the Transformer-based Denoising AutoEncoder (TSDAE), to generate user utterance embeddings, which are classified through a branched neural architecture. Further, DETER generates synthetic outliers using self-supervision and incorporates out-of-scope phrases from open-domain datasets. This approach ensures a comprehensive training set for out-of-scope detection. Additionally, a threshold-based re-classification mechanism refines the model's initial predictions. Evaluations on the CLINC-150, Stackoverflow, and Banking77 datasets demonstrate DETER's efficacy. Our model outperforms previous benchmarks, increasing up to 13 intents on CLINC-150 and Stackoverflow, and 16 intents on Banking77. The source code has been released at
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