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Finding Unexpected Test Accuracy by Cross Validation in Machine Learning


Hoijin Yoon


Vol. 21  No. 12  pp. 549-555


Machine Learning(ML) splits data into 3 parts, which are usually 60% for training, 20% for validation, and 20% for testing. It just splits quantitatively instead of selecting each set of data by a criterion, which is very important concept for the adequacy of test data. ML measures a model’s accuracy by applying a set of validation data, and revises the model until the validation accuracy reaches on a certain level. After the validation process, the complete model is tested with the set of test data, which are not seen by the model yet. If the set of test data covers the model’s attributes well, the test accuracy will be close to the validation accuracy of the model. To make sure that ML’s set of test data works adequately, we design an experiment and see if the test accuracy of model is always close to its validation adequacy as expected. The experiment builds 100 different SVM models for each of six data sets published in UCI ML repository. From the test accuracy and its validation accuracy of 600 cases, we find some unexpected cases, where the test accuracy is very different from its validation accuracy. Consequently, it is not always true that ML’s set of test data is adequate to assure a model’s quality.


Software Testing, Machin learning, Test adequacy, Validation, Accuracy.