5th International Conference on Spoken Language Processing

Sydney, Australia
November 30 - December 4, 1998

Computer-Mediated Input And The Acquisition Of L2 Vowels

Michelle Minnick Fox

Department of Linguistics, University of Pennsylvania, USA

Programs for testing and training of difficult vowel distinctions in American English were created for subjects to access via the Internet using a web browser. The testing and training data include many likely vowel confusions for speakers of different L1s. The training program focuses on one distinction at a time, and adjusts to concentrate on particular contexts or exemplars that are difficult for the individual subject. In the current study, 52 subjects participated in testing and 2 subjects participated in training. In the testing portion, results indicate that the L1 and the fluency level in English, as well as individual variability, have an effect on perceptual ability. In the training portion, subjects showed improvement on the contrasts on which they trained. Because these programs make extensive data collection over large populations and large distances easy, this method of research will facilitate further investigation of questions regarding second language acquisition.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Fox, Michelle Minnick (1998): "Computer-mediated input and the acquisition of L2 vowels", In ICSLP-1998, paper 0911.