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Ife Studies in English Language - Abstract

Title

Ghanaians’ Realization of [] and its Implications for English Teachers

Authors

Charlotte Fofo Lomotey, University of Education, Winneba, Ghana

Published

© Ife Studies in English Language Vol. 8(1) 2010, pp. 21-33

Language

English

Keywords

Schwa, Ghanaian English words, L2 speakers, unstressed syllables, speech perception


Abstract:

Studies have shown that speech perception of non-native contrasts in second language acquisition pose problems for L2 speakers. These may be due to the influence of the L1 phonological system, markedness, universal tendencies or individual characteristics. This paper is an acoustic study that examined the way Ghanaians realize the [] in speech. In all, 66 first year students from the Ghanaian Languages departments of the University of Education, Winneba were chosen for the study. They were given English words with [] at initial, medial and final positions in carrier frames to read as sentences. The data was then analyzed using the Computerized Speech Laboratory (CSL 4500). Results of this study showed that Ghanaians do not really produce [], but rather, produce the vowels according to the way they are spelt in words. English teachers are therefore advised to pay particular attention to the teaching of pronunciation of English words while teaching their students and teacher-trainees.

 

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