A new robust relevance model in the language model framework

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In this paper, a new robust relevance model is proposed that can be applied to both pseudo and true relevance feedback in the language-modeling framework for document retrieval. There are at least three main differences between our new relevance model and other relevance models. The proposed model brings back the original query into the relevance model by treating it as a short, special document, in addition to a number of top-ranked documents returned from the first round retrieval for pseudo feedback, or a number of relevant documents for true relevance feedback. Second, instead of using a uniform prior as in the original relevance model proposed by Lavrenko and Croft, documents are assigned with different priors according to their lengths (in terms) and ranks in the first round retrieval. Third, the probability of a term in the relevance model is further adjusted by its probability in a background language model. In both pseudo and true relevance cases, we have compared the performance of our model to that of the two baselines: the original relevance model and a linear combination model. Our experimental results show that the proposed new model outperforms both of the two baselines in terms of mean average precision.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)991-1007
Number of pages17
JournalInformation Processing and Management
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 2008
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Information Systems
  • Media Technology
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Management Science and Operations Research
  • Library and Information Sciences


  • Feedback
  • Language modeling
  • Query expansion
  • Relevance models


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