# Model Understanding#

Simply examining a model’s performance metrics is not enough to select a model and promote it for use in a production setting. While developing an ML algorithm, it is important to understand how the model behaves on the data, to examine the key factors influencing its predictions and to consider where it may be deficient. Determination of what “success” may mean for an ML project depends first and foremost on the user’s domain expertise.

EvalML includes a variety of tools for understanding models, from graphing utilities to methods for explaining predictions.

** Graphing methods on Jupyter Notebook and Jupyter Lab require ipywidgets to be installed.

** If graphing on Jupyter Lab, jupyterlab-plotly required. To download this, make sure you have npm installed.

## Explaining Feature Influence#

The EvalML package offers a variety of methods for understanding which features in a dataset have an impact on the output of the model. We can investigate this either through feature importance or through permutation importance, and leverage either in generating more readable explanations.

First, let’s train a pipeline on some data.

```
[1]:
```

```
import evalml
from evalml.pipelines import BinaryClassificationPipeline
X, y = evalml.demos.load_breast_cancer()
X_train, X_holdout, y_train, y_holdout = evalml.preprocessing.split_data(
X, y, problem_type="binary", test_size=0.2, random_seed=0
)
pipeline_binary = BinaryClassificationPipeline(
component_graph={
"Label Encoder": ["Label Encoder", "X", "y"],
"Imputer": ["Imputer", "X", "Label Encoder.y"],
"Random Forest Classifier": [
"Random Forest Classifier",
"Imputer.x",
"Label Encoder.y",
],
}
)
pipeline_binary.fit(X_train, y_train)
print(pipeline_binary.score(X_holdout, y_holdout, objectives=["log loss binary"]))
```

```
Number of Features
Numeric 30
Number of training examples: 569
Targets
benign 62.74%
malignant 37.26%
Name: count, dtype: object
```

```
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```

```
OrderedDict([('Log Loss Binary', 0.1686746297113362)])
```

### Feature Importance#

We can get the importance associated with each feature of the resulting pipeline

```
[2]:
```

```
pipeline_binary.feature_importance
```

```
[2]:
```

feature | importance | |
---|---|---|

0 | mean concave points | 0.138857 |

1 | worst perimeter | 0.137780 |

2 | worst concave points | 0.117782 |

3 | worst radius | 0.100584 |

4 | mean concavity | 0.086402 |

5 | worst area | 0.072027 |

6 | mean perimeter | 0.046500 |

7 | worst concavity | 0.043408 |

8 | mean radius | 0.037664 |

9 | mean area | 0.033683 |

10 | radius error | 0.025036 |

11 | area error | 0.019324 |

12 | worst texture | 0.014754 |

13 | worst compactness | 0.014462 |

14 | mean texture | 0.013856 |

15 | worst smoothness | 0.013710 |

16 | worst symmetry | 0.011395 |

17 | perimeter error | 0.010284 |

18 | mean compactness | 0.008162 |

19 | mean smoothness | 0.008154 |

20 | worst fractal dimension | 0.007034 |

21 | fractal dimension error | 0.005502 |

22 | compactness error | 0.004953 |

23 | smoothness error | 0.004728 |

24 | texture error | 0.004384 |

25 | symmetry error | 0.004250 |

26 | mean fractal dimension | 0.004164 |

27 | concavity error | 0.004089 |

28 | mean symmetry | 0.003997 |

29 | concave points error | 0.003076 |

We can also create a bar plot of the feature importances

```
[3]:
```

```
pipeline_binary.graph_feature_importance()
```