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NLP as a Lens for Causal Analysis and Perception Mining to Infer Mental Health on Social Media

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posted on 2023-02-01, 20:42 authored by Muskan Garg, Chandni Saxena, Usman Naseem, Sunghwan Sohn, Bonnie J Dorr

Interactions among humans on social media often convey intentions behind their actions, yielding a psychological language resource for Mental Health Analysis (MHA) of online users. The success of Computational Intelligence Techniques (CIT) for inferring mental illness from such social media resources points to NLP as a lens for causal analysis and perception mining. However, we argue that more consequential and explainable research is required for optimal impact on clinical psychology practice and personalized mental healthcare. To bridge this gap, we posit two significant dimensions: (1) Causal analysis to illustrate a cause and effect relationship in the user generated text; (2) Perception mining to infer psychological perspectives of social effects on online users intentions. Within the scope of Natural Language Processing (NLP), we further explore critical areas of inquiry associated with these two dimensions, specifically through recent advancements in discourse analysis. This position paper guides the community to explore solutions in this space and advance the state of practice in developing conversational agents for inferring mental health from social media. We advocate for a more explainable approach toward modeling computational psychology problems through the lens of language as we observe an increased number of research contributions in dataset and problem formulation for causal relation extraction and perception enhancements while inferring mental states.


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Submitting Author's Institution

The Chinese University of Hong Kong

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  • Hong Kong

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