In The Name of God
Islamic Azad University
Ilam Science And Research Branch
Faculty of Humanities, Department of English Language Teaching
Thesis for Receiving “M.A” Degree on A Teaching
English as a Foreign Language (TEFL)
Investigating Ilami EFL teachers’ performance in pronunciation of neutral and non-neutral suffixes
H. Gowhari Ph.D.
A. Azizifar Ph.D.
IN THE NAME OF GOD
Investigating Ilami EFL teachers’ performance in pronunciation of neutral and non-neutral suffixes
Submitted in Partial Fulfillment of the
Requirements for the Degree of Master of Arts
Islamic Azad University, Ilam Science And Research Branch, Ilam, Iran
Department of English Language Teaching, Faculty of Humanities
ISLAMIC REPUBLIC OF IRAN
EVALUATED AND APPROVED BY THE THESIS COMMITTEE AS:
……………….. H. Gowhary, Ph.D., ASSISTANT.PROF. (SUPERVISOR)
…………. A. Azizifar., Ph.D., ASSISTANT.PROF. (ADVISOR)
I thank all who in one way or another contributed in the completion of this thesis. First, I give thanks to God for protection and ability to do work.
I would like to express my sincere gratitude to my supervisor Dr. Gowhari for the continuous support of my M.A study and research, for his patience, motivation, enthusiasm, and immense knowledge. His guidance helped me in all the time of research and writing of this thesis. I could not have imagined having a better advisor and mentor for my M.A study.
Besides my supervisor, I would like to thank my remarkable advisor, Dr. Azizifar for their encouragement, insightful comments, and honorable guidance.
Last but not the least; I should also express my gratitude to my dear husband who have always encouraged me and support me. Also I would like to thank my parents, for giving birth to me at the first place and supporting me spiritually throughout my life.
This thesis work is dedicated to my husband who has been a constant source of support and encouragement during the challenges of graduate school and life. I am truly thankful for having you in my life.
Table of Contents
List of TablesVIII
List of FiguresIX
Chapter One: Introduction
1-1 Over view3
1-3 Statement of problem7
1-4 Research questions7
1-5 Research hypotheses7
1-6 Significance of the study8
1-7 Definitions of technical terms8
Chapter Two: Literature Review
2-2 Iranian Studies11
2-3 Foreign Studies13
2-4 Theoretical base of the study18
2-5Categories of Suffixes20
2-5-1 Non-neutral (Strong) suffixes21
2-5-2 Neutral suffixes22
2-6 Derivation in lexical morphology23
Chapter Three: Methodology
3-2 Research questions29
3-3 Research design29
3-5-2 Reliability and Validity32
3-6 Data collection procedures32
3-7 Data analysis33
Chapter Four: Results and Discussion
4-2 Demographic information35
4-3 Descriptive statistics36
4-3-1 The frequency of the answers to the pronunciation questions37
4-3-2 The frequency of the answers to the pronunciation questions based on gender38
4-3-3 The frequency of the answers to the pronunciation questions based on academic degree40
4-3-4 The frequency of the answers to the pronunciation questions based on the place of teaching English42
4-3-5 The frequency of the answers to the pronunciation questions based on teaching experience44
4-4 Investigating research hypotheses by using inferential statistics46
4-4-1 First Hypothesis:47
4-4-2 Second Hypothesis:47
4-4-3 Third Hypothesis:48
4-4-4 Fourth Hypothesis:49
Chapter Five: Summary and Conclusion
5-5 limitations of the study55
5-6 Suggestions for further studies56
List of Tables
Table 3-1 Background information about participants of the study30
Table 4-1 Background information about participants of the study36
Table 4-2 The frequency of the answers to the pronunciation questions37
Table 4-3 The frequency of the answers to the pronunciation questions based on gender39
Table 4-4 The frequency of the answers to the pronunciation questions based on academic degree41
Table 4-5 The frequency of the answers to the pronunciation questions based on the place of teaching English43
Table 4-6 The frequency of the answers to the pronunciation questions based on teaching experience45
Table 4-7 The results obtained by applying Man-whitney U Test47
Table 4-8 The results obtained by applying Man-whitney U Test48
Table 4-9 The results obtained by applying Man-whitney U Test48
Table 4-10 The results obtained by applying Kruskal-Wallis Test49
List of Figures
Figure 3-1 Background information about participants of the study31
Figure 4-1 The frequency of the answers to the pronunciation questions38
Figure 4-2 The frequency of the answers to the pronunciation questions based on gender40
Figure 4-3 The frequency of the answers to the pronunciation questions based on academic degree42
Figure 4-4 The frequency of the answers to the pronunciation questions based on the place of teaching English44
Figure 4-5 The frequency of the answers to the pronunciation questions based on teaching experience46
Mastering pronunciation in EFL context, where direct access to native speaker is scarce, is a highly challenging objective for many language students in Iran. Derivative words more specifically, pose their own problems. There are different types of suffixes, two of which are neutral and non-neutral. This study examines the effects of the gender, experience, academic degree and the teaching place of English teachers on the pronunciation of the neutral and non-neutral suffixes. The sample included 40 Ilamian EFL teachers teaching English at different high schools and institutes. None of teachers studied in English speaking countries. They were classified into two groups male and female with B.A. and M.A. degree who taught at different schools and institutes. To analyze data two kinds of test employed: The Man-Whitney U Test for gender, academic degree and place of teaching, and The Kruskal-Wallis for teaching experience. There is no treatment in this study. According to these two tests and the analyses of dependant and independent variables, it can be concluded that there is no meaningful differences between female and male answers in the pronunciation of neutral and non-neutral suffixes. Also the difference between teachers having M.A and B.A degree with the pronunciation of neutral and non-neutral suffixes is not meaningful. But there is a meaningful difference between teaching place and the pronunciation of the neutral and non-neutral suffixes. Furthermore, conserning the last element, it can be said that there is no meaningful difference between three existed ranges of experience with the pronunciation of neutral and non-neutral suffixes.
Key words: pronunciation, derivative words, neutral suffixes, non-neutral suffixes
1-1 Over view
The first chapter of this study addresses the introduction. It is organized in six major sections: a) introduction, b) statement of problem, c) research questions, e) research hypotheses, f) significance of the study and g) definition of the technical terms.
When we think of English skills, the ‘four skills’ of listening, speaking, reading, and writing readily come to mind. Of course other skills such as pronunciation, grammar, vocabulary, and spelling all play a role in effective English communication (Bauer, Laurie, 1988).
Listening skills are vital for learners. Of the ‘four skills,’ listening is by far the most frequently used. Listening and speaking are often taught together, but beginners, especially non-literate ones, should be given more listening than speaking practice. It’s important to speak as close to natural speed as possible, although with beginners some slowing is usually necessary. Without reducing your speaking speed, you can make your language easier to comprehend by simplifying your vocabulary, using shorter sentences, and increasing the number and length of pauses in your speech (Teschner & Whitley, 2004; Fudge, 1984).
Speaking English is the main goal of many adult learners. Their personalities play a large role in determining how quickly and how correctly they will accomplish this goal. Those who are risk-takers unafraid of making mistakes will generally be more talkative, but with many errors that could become hard-to-break habits. Conservative, shy students may take a long time to speak confidently, but when they do, their English often contains fewer errors and they will be proud of their English ability. It’s a matter of quantity vs. quality, and neither approach is wrong. However, if the aim of speaking is communication and that does not require perfect English, then it makes sense to encourage quantity in your classroom. Break the silence and get students communicating with whatever English they can use, correct or not and selectively address errors that block communication. Speaking lessons often tie in pronunciation and grammar which are necessary for effective oral communication (Teschner & Whitley, 2004; Fudge, 1984).
We encounter a great variety of written language day to day — articles, stories, poems, announcements, letters, labels, signs, bills, recipes, schedules, questionnaires, cartoons, the list is endless. Literate adults easily recognize the distinctions of various types of texts (Teschner & Whitley, 2004; Fudge, 1984).
Good writing conveys a meaningful message and uses English well, but the message is more important than correct presentation. If you can understand the message or even part of it, your student has succeeded in communicating on paper and should be praised for that. For many adult ESL learners, writing skills will not be used much outside your class. This doesn’t mean that they shouldn’t be challenged to write, but you should consider their needs and balance your class time appropriately. Many adults who do not need to write will enjoy it for the purpose of sharing their thoughts and personal stories, and they appreciate a format where they can revise their work into better English than if they shared the same information orally (Celce-Murcia et al, 1996; Laroy, 1995).
Grammar is often named as a subject difficult to teach. Its technical language and complex rules can be intimidating (Gainesville, William (1987). Teaching a good grammar lesson is one thing, but what if you’re in the middle of a reading or speaking activity and a student has a grammar question? Some students may have studied grammar in their home countries and be surprised that you don’t understand, “Does passive voice always need the past participle?” But even if your student’s question is simple and jargon-free, explaining grammar is a skill you will need to acquire through practice. If you don’t know how to explain it on the spot, write down the specific sentence or structure in question and tell the student you will find out. There are several resources below that can help you understand and explain various grammar issues (Anderson, R. C., & Freebody, P. 1983).
One of the most difficult troubles facing non-native speakers of English is pronunciation. It is usually the largest obstacle to overcome when trying to achieve fluency.
Pronunciation is an integral part of second or foreign language learning since it directly affects learners’ communicative competence as well as performance on the career. It is the primary medium for communication in which people share ideas and understandings with each other (Jenkins, 2000). Correct pronunciation is an important factor determining the meaningfulness and success of communication.
Pronunciation involves far more than individual sounds. As defined by Peter Roach (2004), pronunciation has been viewed as the sum of three components. The components are sounds, stress and intonation. Word stress, sentence stress, intonation, and word linking all influence the sound of spoken English, not to mention the way we often slur words and phrases together in casual speech (Roach, 2004). ‘What are you going to do?’ becomes ‘Whaddaya gonna do?’ English pronunciation involves too many complexities for learners to strive for a complete elimination of accent, but improving pronunciation will boost self esteem, facilitate communication, and possibly lead to a better job or at least more respect in the workplace. Effective communication is of greatest importance, so choose first to work on problems that significantly hinder communication and let the rest go (Jenkins, 2000). Remember that your students also need to learn strategies for dealing with misunderstandings, since native pronunciation is for most an unrealistic goal. A student’s first language often interferes with English pronunciation. For example, /p/ is aspirated in English but not in Spanish, so when a Spanish speaker pronounces ‘pig’ without a puff of air on the /p/, an American may hear ‘big’ instead (Freyd, P., & Baron, J. 1982). Sometimes the students will be able to identify specific problem sounds and sometimes they won’t. You can ask them for suggestions, but you will also need to observe them over time and make note of problem sounds. Another challenge resulting from differences in the first language is the inability to hear certain English sounds that the native language does not contain. Often these are vowels, as in ‘ship’ and ‘sheep,’ which many learners cannot distinguish. The Japanese are known for confusing /r/ and /l/, as their language contains neither of these but instead has one sound somewhere between the two. For problems such as these, listening is crucial because students can’t produce a sound they can’t hear (Dalton, D. 2002). Descriptions of the sound and mouth position can help students increase their awareness of subtle sound differences (Morley, J. 1991).
Central to lexical morphology is theprinciple that the morphological component of a grammar is organized in a series of heiarchical strata (cf. Allen, 1978; Siegel, 1974; Pesetsky, 1979; Kiparasky, 1982a, 1982b, 1983, 1985; Mohanan, 1982,1986; Mohanan and Mohanan, 1984; Halle and Mohanan, 1985; Strauss, 1982a; and Pulleyblank, 1986).
Katamba (1947) states that English affixes (both prefixes and suffixes) can be grouped in two classes on the basis of their phonological behavior. One type is neutral and the other type is non-neutral. Neutral affixes have no phonological effect on the base to which they have attached, but non-neutral ones affect in some way the consonant or vowel segments, or the location of the stress in the base to which they are attached, they also tend to trigger changes in the shape of vowels or consonants of the base to which they are added. In SPE (this is the standard way of referring to Chomsky and Halle’s 1968 book, The Sound Pattern of English) the difference between the behavior of neutral and non-neutral affixes was dealt with in terms of the strength of boundaries. Between the base and a neutral suffix like -ness or -ly, there was said to intervene a strong boundary (symbolized by ‘#’). In contrast, a weak boundary (symbolized by ‘+’) was assumed to separate the base from a non-neutral suffix like -ic, -ee, or -th. The distinction between non-neutral affixes (associated with ‘+boundary’ in SPE) and neutral affixes (associated with ‘#boundary’) corresponds roughly to the more traditional distinction between primary and secondary affixes (Whitney, 1889; Bloomfield, 1933).
The neutral/non-neutral distinction corresponds to the more traditional distinction between primary (= non-neutral) and secondary (= neutral) affixes and the classic distinction of weak boundary (‘#’) between neutral suffix and base vs. strong boundary (‘+’) between non-neutral suffix and base in SPE.
Formal training basically refers to a course of instruction that has particular objectives of learning and is conducted outside the workplace. Formal training is important as it ensures that your workforce is equipped to handle the job. Some jobs require on the job training but most jobs require one to go to school and receive the necessary qualifications in order to be able to do the job. It is time consuming and costly to correct mistakes made by untrained staff. Training is important because when you don’t know how to do something and you get trained for it, you will eventually learn how to do it (Anderson, R. C., & Freebody, P. 1983).
1-3 Statement of problem
A large part of learning English is about the learning of the pronouncing derivative words. They also called derived form in grammar, form that has undergone derivation from another, as atomic from atom. According to Freyd, P., & Baron, J. (1982) derivative words are problematic especially in pronunciation for EFL teachers and students. The usefulness of teaching pronunciation is a widely debated subject in the language teaching world. Some of the current research would suggest that teachers can make little or no difference in improving their students’ pronunciation. In contrast, there is research that indicates that the teacher can make a noticeable difference if certain criteria, such as the teaching of suprasegmentals are fulfilled. One of the most difficult troubles facing non-native speakers of English is pronunciation. It is usually the largest obstacle to overcome when trying to achieve fluency. That is why; the issue of pronunciation has been dealt with in this M.A thesis.
1-4 Research questions
1. Is there any relationship between teachers’ gender and their pronunciation of the neutral and non-neutral suffixes?
2 Is there any relationship between teachers’ academic degree and their pronunciation of the neutral and non-neutral suffixes?
3 Is there any difference between high school teachers and institute teachers in pronouncing the neutral and non-neutral suffixes?
4. Is there any relationship between teachers’ experience and their pronunciation of the neutral and non-neutral suffixes?
1-5 Research hypotheses
H01. There is no relationship between teachers’ gender and their pronunciation of the neutral and non-neutral suffixes.
H02. There is no relationship between teachers’ academic degree and their pronunciation of the neutral and non-neutral suffixes.
H03. There is no relationship between teaching place and the way of pronouncing the neutral and non-neutral suffixes.
H04. There is no relationship between teachers’ experience and their pronunciation of the neutral and non-neutral suffixes.
1-6 Significance of the study
One of the neglected aspects of teaching language is the way of pronouncing derivative words, so pronouncing derivative words and neutral and non-neutral suffixes are problematic for teachers to teach on one hand, and for learners on the other hand. In this study we examine the effect of four factors on the way of pronouncing derivative and neutral and non-neutral suffixes to show the differences. The results of this study produce awareness about pronunciation of the words especially derivative words.
1-7 Definitions of technical terms
Neutral affix have no phonological effect on the base to which they have attached (Katamba 1947).
abstract – abstractness,
serious – seriousness,
alert – alertness’
home – homeless,
power – powerless,
paper – paperless
Non-neutral affix affect in some way the consonant or vowel segments, or the location of the stress in the base to which they are attached, they also tend to trigger changes in the shape of vowels or consonants of the base to which they are added (Katamba 1947).
strategy – strategic,
morpheme – morphemic,
photograph – photographic
employ – employee,
detain – detainee,
absent – absentee
-ic is a pre-accenting suffix (syllable immediately before it is stressed)
-ee is an auto-stressed suffix (attracts the stress itself)
Pronunciation is one of the English skills that involves far more than individual sounds. Word stress, sentence stress, intonation, and word linking all influence the sound of spoken English (Jenkins, 2000).
Derivative word is a word formed from another by derivation, such as electricity from electric (Freyd, P., & Baron, J. 1982).
This chapter of this study organized in five major sections: the first section is Iranian studies, then foreign studies, after that theoretical base of the study, it followed by categories of suffixes and the last section is derivation in lexical morphology.
2-2 Iranian Studies
In Iran there are studies in suffixes and pronunciation area. It can be mentioned EFL Learner’s Awareness of Stress-Moving vs. Neutral Suffixes was conducted by Zahra Ghorbani Shemshadsara in 2011 as the first research. She states that mastering pronunciation in EFL context, where direct access to native speaker is scarce, is a highly challenging objective for many language students in Iran. Stress as a suprasegmental feature, more specifically, poses its own problems, especially when suffixes are added to words. There are different types of suffixes, two of which are neutral (with no effect on word stress) and stress-moving (changing stress pattern). This research study intended to investigate the students’ awareness of stress patterns when (stress-moving and neutral) suffixes are added to words. This research was conducted to examine the amount of awareness and skill in pronouncing two types of words: words with stress moving suffix and words with neutral suffix. The result showed that stress-moving suffixes are more difficult to learn than neutral suffixes. As a result, it is suggested that this feature of stress pattern in the English language be explicitly taught and practiced in the classroom. Otherwise, the learners may not notice such delicate differences in stress patterns of words due to addition of stress-moving suffixes. Also, as far as research on pronunciation is concerned, the present study can stimulate more investigations on similar problems at both segmental and suprasegmental levels of pronunciation in EFL classes. For instance, some interlanguage studies can reveal the pattern of pronunciation development in EFL learners with different L1 backgrounds. Furthermore, there is a need to try different strategies for teaching pronunciation to discover more effective pedagogical tools or means for the learners to promote their pronunciation.
Another study concerning pronunciation is A Study of Factors Affecting EFL Learners’ English Pronunciation Learning and the Strategies for Instruction by Abbas Pourhosein Gilakjani (2012). In this study he states that pronunciation can be one of the most difficult parts of a language for EFL learners to master and one of the least favorite topics for teachers to address in the EFL classroom. All learners can do well in learning the pronunciation of a foreign language if the teacher and learner participate together in the total learning process. Success can be achieved if each has set individual teaching and learning goals. Pronunciation must be viewed as more than correct production of phonemes: it must be viewed in the same light as grammar, syntax, and discourse that is an important part of communication. Research has shown and current pedagogical thinking on pronunciation maintains that intelligible pronunciation is seen as an essential component of communicative competence. With this in mind, the teacher must then set obtainable aims that are applicable and suitable for the communication needs of the learner. The learner must also become part of the learning process, actively involved in their own learning. The content of the course should be integrated into the communication class, with the content emphasizing the teaching of suprasegmentals, linking pronunciation with listening comprehension, and allowing for meaningful pronunciation practice. With the teacher acting as a ‘speech coach’, rather than as a mere checker of pronunciation, the feedback given to the student can encourage learners to improve their pronunciation. If these criteria are met, all learners, within their learner unique aims, can be expected to do well learning the pronunciation of a foreign language.
A Descriptive Overview of Pronunciation Instruction in Iranian High Schools was done by Hesamoddin Shahriari & Beheshteh Shakhsi Dastgahian in 2014. According to this study, among 20 different methods of teaching pronunciation which are used more frequently by Iranian English teachers, imitation as oral repetition has shown the first and foremost place. Using different kinds of materials such as pictures, making students use dictionaries to see the correct pronunciation, and showing the organs of articulation through pictorial diagrams are the second, third, and fourth effective factors respectively. By descriptive statistics for male and female teachers, men show a higher mean in using oral repetition and also in using instructional materials for teaching pronunciation. Those teachers with higher degrees do better in using different techniques in general and oral repetition in particular. Furthermore, teachers having a higher degree and more work experience have better understanding which method to choose for teaching pronunciation to their students which is simpler and easier. It is assumed that although frequent techniques used in our schools by male and female teachers are taken away by other teaching pronunciation techniques introduced by some researchers such as Nation and Newton, there will still remain a question to what extent these techniques are helpful in ran’s pedagogical system. Future studies may focus on the roles of these techniques in the achievement of Iranian EFL learners.
The last study to be mentioned here The Effect of Stress Pattern on Iranian English Language Learners’ Pronunciation by Lida Vafaei, Islamic Azad University of Takestan, Iran in 2013. This study investigated the stress pattern of Iranian English language learners’ pronunciation. Participants were 30 intermediate EFL learners studying English in Jouya English institute in Tehran. In order to measure the level of the ability of the students in pronouncing the correct words in terms of their stress, 80 words selected from participants’ text books. The words were divided into four groups according to the number of syllables and the place of stress; the first group consisted of 20 two-syllable words with stress on the first syllable, the second group was a 20 two-syllable words with stress is on the second syllable, the third group consisted of 20 three-syllable words with the stress was on the first syllable, and Lastly the fourth group included 20 three-syllable words with stress is on the second syllable. Participants were asked to read the words which were selected as a production test. Participants’ performance was audio taped to find out on which syllable of the word the stress is put. The results revealed that participants were more successful in pronouncing the words whose stress was on the first syllable in comparison to those having stress on the second syllable.
2-3 Foreign Studies
Although there is no any research and paper about suffixes and especially about pronunciation of the non-neutral suffixes; but there are some studies in pronunciation area as following.
The first one is done by Mathias B?rjesson on fall 2013 had conducted a research in pronunciation, its title is The Pronunciation of English by Somali L1 students in Sweden: Testing indications of phonetic transfer through Error Analysis and Contrastive Analysis. The main aim of the study was to investigate phonemic errors in relation to transfer seen from a didactic point of view. The material consisted of 10 Somali L1 students’ results on a pronunciation test and their answers to some interview questions. Four of the students were born in Sweden and six of them were born abroad. The results shown that the average Somali L1 student born outside of Sweden made approximately three times as many errors as the average Somali L1 student born in Sweden. The errors made by all students were shown to be related to both Somali, Swedish and the Somali-Swedish interlanguage. The results also shown that the Somali L1 students born outside of Sweden were the only ones who made errors that could not be linked to typical difficulties, so called non-typical errors.
Next research was conducted by Anitabarraza on July 2013 on Teaching Pronunciation to ESL Adult Learners. This paper aimed at reviewing the theory regarding second language learning and at finding evidence in previous research that adults are capable of learning a foreign language as successfully as children. In relation with pronunciation learning, there is evidence that adults may not acquire foreign sounds with the same accuracy as children do. However, it also possible to find within the seminal works in the field of learning theories that adults need a methodology that is different from the teaching methodology for children and that a change in the approach to teaching pronunciation may result in better acquisition of oral communicative skills in ESL adult learners, although the investigation done in the phonological area of ESL is scarce and further research in the field is needed.
The Relationship between Pronunciation Ability and Listening Ability is the other research which was done by Rika Purnama Sari on June 2012. The Relationship between Pronunciation Ability and Listening Ability of Employees in PT. PGN Area Batam Language involves a duality of patterning, as Hockett (1954) has noted. On the one hand, there are patterns that pertain to the way that sounds are organized; on the other, there are patterns that relate to hoe meanings are organized. Although language use dealing with patterns at both levels, it often seems as though the two are studied in relative isolation of one another. So, what is definition of language? Language is one system for human to communicate with other by speech and writing, so that human can represent their ideas and thoughts through the sounds or letters. Language is vested in culture and the origin of spoken language is as old as humanity itself. Early human ancestors began using spoken language several million years ago. Humans began writing about 5,000 years ago. Language made it possible for human societies to develop. Language is the development of the basic form of communication between human beings, and in a society. And just as it is the basic form, it is also the most developed. We cannot communicate in any real sense without language.
Another research is Modern English by TanayKundu on November 2013. This research helped to discover some of the interesting findings of a survey conducted to determine how Modern English language came to us. The main issue of this research paper was total information about modern English. What is language chronicles? What is the period of modern English language? What is early modern English language? What is late modern English language? We have collected data by reading several books and read over internet. Its major findings were how we got modern English language. Though this research had been done with a small group of students, it revealed so many interesting and influential findings that will help us to know about history of modern English language.
Accent and Pronunciation by johnsonhuong that was done on November 2013 as the other research in the pronunciation area. Empirical studies are essential to improving our understanding of the relationship between accent and pronunciation teaching. However, the study of pronunciation has been marginalized within the ?eld of applied linguistics. As a result, teachers are often left to rely on their own intuitions with little direction. Although some instructors can successfully assist their students under these conditions, many others are reluctant to teach pronunciation. In this article we call for more research to enhance our knowledge of the nature of foreign accents and their effects on communication. Research of this type has much to offer to teachers and students in terms of helping them to set learning goals, identifying appropriate pedagogical priorities for the classroom, and determining the most effective approaches to teaching. We discuss these possibilities within a framework in which mutual intelligibility is the primary consideration, although social rami?cations of accent must also be taken into account. We describe several problem areas and identify some misconceptions about pronunciation instruction. In addition, we make suggestions for future research that would address intelligibility, functional load, computer-assisted language learning, and the role of the listener. Finally, we recommend greater collaboration between researchers and practitioners, such that more classroom relevant research is undertaken. The phenomenon that we call a foreign accent is a complex aspect of language that affects speakers and listeners in both perception and production and, consequently, in social interaction.
The Use of ESI to Improve Students English Pronunciation of Word Stress was done by Aree Tehlah, Rattaphum College, Rajamangala University of Technology Srivijaya, Songkhla, Thailand in 2012. The purposes of this study were: 1) to investigate the learners’ background knowledge of English pronunciation in terms of word stress; 2) to investigate the effectiveness of explicit suffixation instruction (ESI) in developing students’ English pronunciation; and 3) to investigate the learners’ satisfaction with explicit suffixation instruction in developing students’ English pronunciation. Subjects were 61 students of 2nd year Diploma program at Rattaphum College, Rajamangala University of Technology Srivijaya, Songkhla province. They were divided into two groups: 31 students of the experimental group, and 30 students of the control group. This study was conducted throughout the first semester in academic year 2012 (May-September 2012). There were 4 instruments used in this study: 1) the pre-test; 2) the treatment about explicit suffixation instruction; 3) the post-test; and 4) the questionnaire. The findings showed that: 1) the learners’ background knowledge of English pronunciation in both groups was not significantly different; 2) the explicit suffixation instruction could enhance the knowledge of English pronunciation of the students in the experimental group and showed a significant difference at 0.01 level (t = 7.25); and 3) the learners’ overall satisfaction of the explicit suffixation instruction in developing English pronunciation was positively high (x = 3.84). This indicates that the explicit suffixation instruction can not only help students improve their English pronunciation, but it also enhances learners’ satisfaction with learning of English pronunciation in terms of word stress. This research study aimed to find out at which level the English pronunciation knowledge of learners before the experiment was, whether the explicit instruction could improve their knowledge of English pronunciation, and at which level students was satisfied with the explicit suffixation instruction of English pronunciation in terms of word stress. The details were described as follows.
Teaching and Learning of Pronunciation was done by Phool (2012). Pronunciation teaching is a prominent factor in foreign language teaching. Since sounds play an important role in communication, foreign language teachers must attribute proper importance to teaching pronunciation in their classes. However, this fact is very much neglected by many foreign language teachers. This paper is aimed at pinpointing the current situation in teaching and pronunciation especially in China. It summarized the background of pronunciation teaching, and the need for incorporating pronunciation into foreign language classes owing to regarding pronunciation as a key to gaining full communicative competence. The possible problems and the responding reasons be disused and some solutions also be pinpointed out in the paper. There had arisen many approaches and methods towards the teaching and learning of pronunciation and a relatively new approach called the prosody pyramid be introduced here, which may shed a light on the research.
Teaching Pronunciation to Adult English Language Learners was conducted by Kirsten Schaetzel, Georgetown Law Center, Washington, DC on July 2009. Recent discussion of and research on the teaching and learning of pronunciation had focused on the following issues: the importance of accent, stress, intonation, and rhythm in the comprehensibility of the speech of nonnative speakers; the effects of motivation and exposure on the development of native-like pronunciation; and the intelligibility of speech among speakers of different English varieties. Although there are challenges to teaching and learning English pronunciation, it is an area vital to adult English language learners’ communicative competence. Recent research has shed light on pronunciation features to be taught and on learners’ goals and motivations for improving their pronunciation. By incorporating current research and its implications into their teaching practice, teachers can help learners gain the skills they need for effective communication in English.
Improving Adult ESL Learners’ Pronunciation Skills was done by MaryAnn Cunningham Florez who had studied at National Center for ESL Literacy Education on December 1998. According to this research it can be said Pronunciation can be one of the most difficult parts of a language for adult learners to master and one of the least favorite topics for teachers to address in the classroom. Nevertheless, with careful preparation and integration, pronunciation can play an important role in supporting learners’ overall communicative power.
Level Ordering: A Model for Suffix Combinations is another study in suffixes area which was conducted by Asst.Inst.Wasan Noori Fadhil . This model assumes that English affixes belong to different strata and that these strata interact phonologically and morphologically in intricate ways. This is called level ordering. This paper deals with level ordering as a model for suffix combinations and to what extent can we depend on level ordering in order to provide a correct order of suffix combinations. The main conclusion of this paper is that level ordering helps us to say that English affixes belong to different strata and that stratum 1 is distinguished from stratum 2 phonologically, morphologically and semantically. Most importantly, the order of affixes is constrained by a certain restriction that stratum 1 affixes cannot occur outside stratum 2 affixes. However, level ordering does not prove a powerful model for affix combinations since it encounters serious problems. These problems involve some counterexamples to the above restriction, dual-class affixes and racketing paradoxes. Thus, we have to look for another model for affix combinations.
Also The Syntax of Turkish Pre-Stressing Suffixes was done by Kabak & ogel (2001) and Kornfilt & Kahnemuyipour (2006). The ‘pre-stressing’ suffixes in Turkish have attracted considerable attention because these suffixes change the placement of the word