Questions tagged [pronunciation]

Questions about the sounds, intonation, and stress of how words are uttered or produced. When asking questions about learning or teaching the pronunciation of a specific language, pleased add a language-specific tag.

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9
votes
1answer
71 views

Standardized Phonemes and Pronunciation

I want to start from the most fundamental and hard problem to me (and maybe to everyone). Two years ago, I had started a project to teach English to non-natives only in English. Before, lots of them ...
4
votes
1answer
40 views

How do I not prioritize pronunciation over comprehension when reading out loud?

When I read an Italian text (this question is about reading out loud), what I focus on dictates how "well" I read it. For example, if I focus on pronunciation, then my pronunciation is flawless, but ...
5
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3answers
179 views

Is it good practice to learn new foreign words with transcription in my native language?

For example, the English kitchen [китчен]. Is this way suitable for children?
9
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0answers
1k views

Mastering both the French r and the German r

I have a high level in German and French, but I use a uvular /ʁ/ in French and an alveolar /r/ in German (and in Dutch, my native language). In German, the alveolar /r/ is mainly used in Bavaria and ...
5
votes
1answer
86 views

Is using x-ray/MRI images of the vocal track to learn a foreign language recommended?

In this blog post the author makes a convincing case for teaching/studying the cardinal vowel quadrilateral in language learning. Apparently it's taught to actors and in some advanced language courses ...
4
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2answers
138 views

How can I roll the Georgian r?

Whenever I speak to Georgians, I always have to try and pronounce 'r' right before I can have a conversation in Georgian. It's annoying but really comical at the same time because I am absolutely ...
8
votes
1answer
142 views

How can I understand the difference between the 'D' sound and 'T' sound?

I have started learning English. Currently, I can't understand the difference between the 'D' sound and the 'T' sound while listening to someone speaking or in audio. How can I learn how to ...
9
votes
2answers
124 views

Does a good pronunciation improve one's ability to learn a language?

My father is a native Spanish speaker. He struggles with English pronunciation, and even though he has studied many English courses, he seems to be stuck. Once I talked with a phonetics teacher, with ...
6
votes
1answer
89 views

What does “linking” mean?

When I am learning about pronunciation of English, I found a word called linking. The word seems about pronunciation. What is linking? And how can I learn correct linking in pronunciation?
6
votes
1answer
120 views

Even if the pronunciation and the alphabet don't correspond to each other, is phonics effective?

Phonics, a method of correlating sounds in a language to letters or groups of letters, is often used to learn proper pronunciation of words in a language. However, in the case that a language's ...
5
votes
1answer
73 views

Are minimal pairs for learners of a given L2 independent of their L1?

As mentioned in this question, Gabriel Wyner attaches a lot of importance to minimal pairs in the early stages of learning of foreign language. Gabriel Wyner is a native speaker of English, and his ...
10
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2answers
194 views

Is there a web site for minimal pairs in arbitrary languages?

Gabriel Wyner puts a strong emphasis on studying minimal pairs to improve pronunciation. But I have yet to find a good resource for actually finding minimal pair lists. It seems I'm not alone. When ...
15
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2answers
148 views

Can reading aloud be an alternative to practicing speaking skills with other people?

The reason might be that we can not easily find people with the same language that we learn or just feeling more comfortable when we read out loud and try to make correct sounds by ourselves.
4
votes
1answer
82 views

How can I learn all the rules and exceptions about the Vowel Reduction in Russian?

I've been trying to find the rules and exceptions about this subject, but I can't really find a good source. At this point, I don't know if I'm supposed to learn this in this way. Sorry, I'm kind of ...
12
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1answer
112 views

How could we know that the pronunciation of an ancient language like Aramaic is correct?

This question is directly related to my former question on Aramaic: How to learn the vocabulary of an ancient language like Aramaic, which is based on scripture only? I'd like to know how and on ...
6
votes
2answers
149 views

How can I remember the pronunciation of Danish words?

I've been studying Danish for 6 days. I can have an easy conversation and ask some basic questions like: hvad koster det? (How much does this cost?). Anyway, I have a big problem: I can't remember ...
9
votes
1answer
123 views

What is the name of this particular language learning class (technique)?

Back in 1988 or 1989, I took a three month French immersion program at the University of Tours. We had classes in reading, grammar, writing, etc. Amongst the various classes there was one that stood ...
3
votes
2answers
83 views

Have you any ideas on how I can improve my Russian pronunciation? [duplicate]

I want to practise my speaking skills in Russian but I have no conversation partner knowing Russian pretty well to correct all my mistakes. What should I do?
10
votes
3answers
203 views

How to avoid an English accent in Hebrew

I speak fairly fluent Hebrew as a second language, and I have a UK English accent. I want to know what pronunciation issues generally would be an issue for English speakers and would sound strange/be ...
4
votes
1answer
69 views

Does the quality of audio recordings affect their effectiveness in exemplifying pronunciation?

Some of the FSI free language courses are accompanied by audio recordings which were originally on cassette tapes. This means that those recordings are not quite on par with the more modern audio ...
14
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4answers
2k views

What advantages, if any, are there for learning the IPA when studying a language with phonetic spelling?

The IPA provides a standard, unambiguous way of writing the pronunciation of words, which can be quite helpful when learning a language like English, which has very irregular spelling (with respect to ...
11
votes
1answer
223 views

What techniques can I use to master nasal vowel pronunciation?

I'm referring to those encountered often in French and Portuguese for example. In Portuguese they may be denoted by "ão" or "õe". When first learning these new pronunciations from my native English, ...
14
votes
5answers
2k views

Pros and cons of using IPA over other phonetic alphabets

I've taught myself to use the IPA as an aide for pronunciation training, but I'm well aware that other phonetic alphabets are in widespread use in language courses. Where does the IPA fall short ...
16
votes
4answers
1k views

How can I teach someone how to roll their r's?

The sound I'm referring to is the alveolar trill (/r/), as found in Spanish word "carro", though that is just an example in one language. I learned how to make this sound by making positioning my ...
13
votes
1answer
142 views

How can I teach someone to pronounce phonemes non-existent in their native language?

As I learned other languages I realized that some phonemes which are common in one language are not so familiar in others. There are even cases where some phonemes do not exist in other specific ...
1
vote
1answer
588 views

Are vowels more difficult for English speakers than consonants? If so, why? [closed]

When learning Japanese, I didn't often get words wrong, but it felt like when I did, it was the vowels I got wrong, not the consonants. As background, I learnt Japanese using romaji for a while, but ...
17
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3answers
156 views

How can I help a person improve their L2 pronunciation?

My wife is a native Spanish speaker. I'm a native English speaker. At home we speak both languages nearly interchangeably. But now she has a job speaking English. How can I most effectively help her ...
3
votes
1answer
115 views

How important is accent for being understood in a given language? [closed]

When I learned English at school (in France), my teachers asked me to make effort to have an "England-like" pronunciation (which was difficult for me). Today, I use the English language for my work (...
16
votes
3answers
303 views

Can the McGurk effect also help develop pronunciation?

Seeing someone's mouth movements can influence what your brain processes a word to be (see McGurk effect), and hearing someone talk can also help you develop your pronunciation for that language. ...
18
votes
1answer
573 views

How can I develop an accent in a foreign language?

I have been teaching myself Italian for 2 years so far, and I still sound very foreign. When I am speaking Italian with someone else, it is difficult to imitate their accent properly, and when I try, ...
18
votes
4answers
1k views

How can I learn IPA?

There are many resources that I wish I could use, but can't, because I don't understand the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) fluently. I constantly need to refer to a table of characters, and I'm ...
44
votes
6answers
1k views

How can I verify my pronunciation without a native speaker?

I've been learning Japanese for a short while, and it uses some sounds that aren't in my native language (English). (For example, the "r" sound, which has been described to me as a combination of "d", ...
32
votes
4answers
553 views

How can I avoid learning an incorrect pronunciation due to a word's spelling?

I've noticed that I and others (sometimes entire communities) mispronounce words in a second language, which they could in theory pronounce well using phonemes of their first language, because of the ...
19
votes
3answers
487 views

Can I have C1-level proficiency in a foreign language even if my pronunciation is poor?

The Common European Framework of Reference for Languages and its A1–C2 scale is often referred to when discussing one's skill in a language. I've never been tested, but, based on the Wikipedia ...

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