Minimum Word Error Training of Long Short-Term Memory Recurrent Neural Network Language Models for Speech Recognition

This paper describes minimum word error (MWE) training of recurrent neural network language models (RNNLMs) for speech recognition. RNNLMs are usually trained to minimize a cross entropy of estimated word probabilities against the correct word sequence, which corresponds to maximum likelihood criterion. However, this training does not necessarily maximize a performance measure in a target task, i.e. it does not minimize word error rate (WER) explicitly in speech recognition. To solve such a problem, several discriminative training methods have already been proposed for n-gram language models, but those for RNNLMs have not sufficiently investigated. In this paper, we propose a MWE training method for RNNLMs, and report significant WER reductions when we applied the MWE method to a standard Elman-type RNNLM and a more advanced model, a Long Short-Term Memory (LSTM) RNNLM. We also present efficient MWE training with N-best lists on Graphics Processing Units (GPUs).