10th Annual Conference of the International Speech Communication Association

Brighton, United Kingdom
September 6-10, 2009

An Articulatory Analysis of Phonological Transfer Using Real-Time MRI

Joseph Tepperman, Erik Bresch, Yoon-Chul Kim, Sungbok Lee, Louis Goldstein, Shrikanth S. Narayanan

University of Southern California, USA

Phonological transfer is the influence of a first language on phonological variations made when speaking a second language. With automatic pronunciation assessment applications in mind, this study intends to uncover evidence of phonological transfer in terms of articulation. Real-time MRI videos from three German speakers of English and three native English speakers are compared to uncover the influence of German consonants on close English consonants not found in German. Results show that nonnative speakers demonstrate the effects of L1 transfer through the absence of articulatory contrasts seen in native speakers, while still maintaining minimal articulatory contrasts that are necessary for automatic detection of pronunciation errors, encouraging the further use of articulatory models for speech error characterization and detection.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Tepperman, Joseph / Bresch, Erik / Kim, Yoon-Chul / Lee, Sungbok / Goldstein, Louis / Narayanan, Shrikanth S. (2009): "An articulatory analysis of phonological transfer using real-time MRI", In INTERSPEECH-2009, 700-703.