A Phonetic Analysis of Korean EFL Learners' Production of English Reduced Vowel

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Kwon, HaRim
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Seoul National University Department of English Language and Literature
SNU Working Papers in English Language and Linguistics 5, 1-13
English reduced vowelsL1 effectdurationpitchformantfrequencies
This study investigates the phonetic properties of English reduced vowel of Korean EFL learners. Five native speakers of Korean (experimental group) and two native speakers of English (control group) participated in the study. While pronouncing English reduced vowels, Korean EFL learners were different from English native speakers in two acoustic features. Firstly, the learners' duration of the reduced vowels was significantly longer than that of the native speakers. Secondly, the vowel quality (first and second formant frequencies) of reduced vowels was also different between the learners and the native speakers. The formant frequencies of English reduced vowels of Korean EFL learners were more like those of native speakers' /З/ or /υ/ rather than the reduced vowels. However, the learners were nativelike in having a lower fundamental frequency for the reduced vowels. The results are discussed in terms of the effect of the first language of the learners, especially the effect of phonological status of certain phonetic features.
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College of Humanities (인문대학)English Language and Literature (영어영문학과)SNU working papers in English language and linguisticsSNU working papers in English language and linguistics Vol.06 (2007)
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