Skip to yearly menu bar Skip to main content

Workshop: MATH-AI: Toward Human-Level Mathematical Reasoning

Learning to Reason With Relational Abstractions

Andrew Nam · James McClelland · Mengye Ren · Chelsea Finn


Large language models have recently shown promising progress in mathematical reasoning when fine-tuned with human-generated sequences walking through a sequence of solution steps. However, the solution sequences are not formally structured and the resulting model-generated sequences may not reflect the kind of systematic reasoning we might expect an expert human to produce. In this paper, we study how to build stronger reasoning capability in language models using the idea of relational abstractions. We introduce new types of sequences that more explicitly provide an abstract characterization of the transitions through intermediate solution steps to the goal state. We find that models that are supplied with such sequences as prompts can solve tasks with a significantly higher accuracy, and models that are trained to produce such sequences solve problems better than those that are trained with previously used human-generated sequences and other baselines. Our work thus takes several steps toward elucidating and improving how language models perform on tasks requiring multi-step mathematical reasoning.

Chat is not available.