Interspeech'2005 - Eurospeech

Lisbon, Portugal
September 4-8, 2005

Perceptual Space of English Fricatives for Japanese Learners

Won Tokuma (1), Shinichi Tokuma (2)

(1) Seijo University, Japan; (2) Chuo University, Japan

This study investigates the relationship between perceptual and physical spatial configurations of English fricatives judged by Japanese learners. Multidimensional scaling analyses were used to obtain spatial representations from similarity judgements and spectral distance analysis. The 2-dimensional perceptual solution did not correspond well to its physical solution. For the physical space, the two dimensions could be interpreted as the phonetic feature properties of ‘sibilance' and ‘place' of articulation for fricatives. For the perceptual space, the sibilance property was maintained while the place property was not. In terms of their spectral properties, overall spectral shape was a salient acoustic cue for L2 learners but individual spectral peak frequencies seem to be language specific. The results imply that L2 perception was not based on the acoustic signals, but largely influenced by the learners' native language phonological structure.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Tokuma, Won / Tokuma, Shinichi (2005): "Perceptual space of English fricatives for Japanese learners", In INTERSPEECH-2005, 1769-1772.