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Benchmarking Robustness of Adaptation Methods on Pre-trained Vision-Language Models

Shuo Chen · Jindong Gu · Zhen Han · Yunpu Ma · Philip Torr · Volker Tresp

Great Hall & Hall B1+B2 (level 1) #909


Various adaptation methods, such as LoRA, prompts, and adapters, have been proposed to enhance the performance of pre-trained vision-language models in specific domains. As test samples in real-world applications usually differ from adaptation data, the robustness of these adaptation methods against distribution shifts are essential. In this study, we assess the robustness of 11 widely-used adaptation methods across 4 vision-language datasets under multimodal corruptions. Concretely, we introduce 7 benchmark datasets, including 96 visual and 87 textual corruptions, to investigate the robustness of different adaptation methods, the impact of available adaptation examples, and the influence of trainable parameter size during adaptation. Our analysis reveals that: 1) Adaptation methods are more sensitive to text corruptions than visual corruptions. 2) Full fine-tuning does not consistently provide the highest robustness; instead, adapters can achieve better robustness with comparable clean performance. 3) Contrary to expectations, our findings indicate that increasing the number of adaptation data and parameters does not guarantee enhanced robustness; instead, it results in even lower robustness. We hope this study could benefit future research in the development of robust multimodal adaptation methods. The benchmark, code, and dataset used in this study can be accessed at

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