The perception of Estonian quantity degrees by Spanish listeners

Katrin Leppik, Pärtel Lippus, Eva Liina Asu


This paper studies the perception of Estonian quantity degrees by Spanish L1 listeners. Estonian and Spanish have different prosodic systems. Estonian is a quantity language where duration combined with tonal components is used to signal quantity while Spanish does not have phonological length oppositions. Twenty-two Spanish L1 and ten Estonian L1 listeners participated in the Estonian three-way quantity identification test. The results showed that Spanish L1 listeners find it difficult to perceive the Estonian quantity degrees, in particular to distinguish the long and overlong quantities. The duration of study of Estonian and the time of residence in Estonia did not have an effect on the results. The results of this study support previous findings about the perception of Estonian quantity degrees, and are in line with the Feature Hypothesis according to which the perception of L2 phonological features that are not used in L1 is difficult for L2 learners.


 DOI: 10.21437/SpeechProsody.2018-97

Cite as: Leppik, K., Lippus, P., Asu, E.L. (2018) The perception of Estonian quantity degrees by Spanish listeners. Proc. 9th International Conference on Speech Prosody 2018, 478-482, DOI: 10.21437/SpeechProsody.2018-97.


@inproceedings{Leppik2018,
  author={Katrin Leppik and Pärtel Lippus and Eva Liina Asu},
  title={The perception of Estonian quantity degrees by Spanish listeners},
  year=2018,
  booktitle={Proc. 9th International Conference on Speech Prosody 2018},
  pages={478--482},
  doi={10.21437/SpeechProsody.2018-97},
  url={http://dx.doi.org/10.21437/SpeechProsody.2018-97}
}