Learning to Attend, Copy, and Generate for Session-Based Query Suggestion

11 Aug 2017  ·  Mostafa Dehghani, Sascha Rothe, Enrique Alfonseca, Pascal Fleury ·

Users try to articulate their complex information needs during search sessions by reformulating their queries. To make this process more effective, search engines provide related queries to help users in specifying the information need in their search process. In this paper, we propose a customized sequence-to-sequence model for session-based query suggestion. In our model, we employ a query-aware attention mechanism to capture the structure of the session context. is enables us to control the scope of the session from which we infer the suggested next query, which helps not only handle the noisy data but also automatically detect session boundaries. Furthermore, we observe that, based on the user query reformulation behavior, within a single session a large portion of query terms is retained from the previously submitted queries and consists of mostly infrequent or unseen terms that are usually not included in the vocabulary. We therefore empower the decoder of our model to access the source words from the session context during decoding by incorporating a copy mechanism. Moreover, we propose evaluation metrics to assess the quality of the generative models for query suggestion. We conduct an extensive set of experiments and analysis. e results suggest that our model outperforms the baselines both in terms of the generating queries and scoring candidate queries for the task of query suggestion.

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