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Knowledge Augmented Deep Neural Networks for Joint Facial Expression and Action Unit Recognition

Zijun Cui · Tengfei Song · Yuru Wang · Qiang Ji

Poster Session 1 #208


Facial expression and action units (AUs) represent two levels of descriptions of the facial behavior. Due to the underlying facial anatomy and the need to form a meaningful coherent expression, they are strongly correlated. This paper proposes to systematically capture their dependencies and incorporate them into a deep learning framework for joint facial expression recognition and action unit detection. Specifically, we first propose a constraint optimization method to encode the generic knowledge on expression-AUs probabilistic dependencies into a Bayesian Network (BN). The BN is then integrated into a deep learning framework as a weak supervision for an AU detection model. A data-driven facial expression recognition(FER) model is then constructed from data. Finally, the FER model and AU detection model are trained jointly to refine their learning. Evaluations on benchmark datasets demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed knowledge integration in improving the performance of both the FER model and the AU detection model. The proposed AU detection model is demonstrated to be able to achieve competitive performance without AU annotations. Furthermore, the proposed Bayesian Network capturing the generic knowledge is demonstrated to generalize well to different datasets.

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