1887
Volume 35, Issue 1
  • ISSN 0155-0640
  • E-ISSN: 1833-7139

Abstract

This paper investigates the effect of listener attitudes on the ability to understand a foreign (non-Australian) accent. The research focuses on individual listener characteristics, such as attitude and frequency of contact with accented speakers, rather than speech production. Data was collected through a web-based survey and analysis employed both quantitative and qualitative methodologies. Correlation was found between a negative attitude toward other ethnicities and ability to correctly transcribe foreign-accented speech, with a stronger correlation between a negative attitude and comprehensibility. Qualitative analysis of participant comments highlighted discrepancies in attitude testing methods and indicated that an accent can inspire many assumptions, the most common being that foreign-accented speakers have a lower level of education than Australian-accented speakers. The results suggest that future research in this area should always try to account for individual participant characteristics.

Loading

Article metrics loading...

/content/journals/10.1075/aral.35.1.04fra
2012-01-01
2019-09-16
Loading full text...

Full text loading...

References

  1. Anderson-Hsieh, J. , Johnson, R. Koehler, K.
    (1992) The relationship between native speaker judgments of nonnative pronunciation and deviance in segmentals, prosody, and syllable structure. Language Learning, 42, 529–555. doi: 10.1111/j.1467‑1770.1992.tb01043.x
    https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-1770.1992.tb01043.x [Google Scholar]
  2. Barker, V. , Giles, H. , Noels, K. , Duck, J. , Hecht, M. & Clément, R.
    (2001) The English-only movement: A communication analysis of changing perceptions of language vitality. Journal of Communication, 51(1), 3–37. doi: 10.1111/j.1460‑2466.2001.tb02870.x
    https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1460-2466.2001.tb02870.x [Google Scholar]
  3. Clarke, C. M.
    (2000) Perceptual adjustment to foreign-accented English. Journal of Acoustic Society of America, 107, 28–56. doi: 10.1121/1.429245
    https://doi.org/10.1121/1.429245 [Google Scholar]
  4. Clarke, C. M. , & Garrett, M. F.
    (2002) Rapid adaptation to foreign-accented English. Journal of Acoustic Society of America, 116, 3647–3658. doi: 10.1121/1.1815131
    https://doi.org/10.1121/1.1815131 [Google Scholar]
  5. Field, J.
    (2005) Intelligibility and the listener: the role of lexical stress. TESOL Quarterly, 39(3), 399–423. doi: 10.2307/3588487
    https://doi.org/10.2307/3588487 [Google Scholar]
  6. Flege, J. E. & Fletcher, K. L.
    (1992) Talker and listener effects on degree of perceived foreign accent. Journal of Acoustic Society of America, 91(1), 370–389. doi: 10.1121/1.402780
    https://doi.org/10.1121/1.402780 [Google Scholar]
  7. Flege, J. E. , Munro, M. J. & MacKay, I. R.
    (1995) Factors affecting strength of perceived foreign accent in a second language. Journal of Acoustic Society of America, 97(5), 3125–3134. doi: 10.1121/1.413041
    https://doi.org/10.1121/1.413041 [Google Scholar]
  8. Gynan. S. N.
    (1985) Comprehensibility, irritation and error hierarchies. Hispanica, 68(1), 160 – 165. doi: 10.2307/341633
    https://doi.org/10.2307/341633 [Google Scholar]
  9. Fayer, J. & Krasinski, E.
    (1987) Native and nonnative judgements of intelligibility and irritation. Language Learning, 37, 313–326. doi: 10.1111/j.1467‑1770.1987.tb00573.x
    https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-1770.1987.tb00573.x [Google Scholar]
  10. Jenkins, J.
    (2000) The phonology of English as an international language: New models, new norms, new goals. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  11. Lindemann, S.
    (2002) Listening with attitude: A model of native-speaker comprehensibility of nonnative speakers in the United States. Language in Society, 31, 419–441. doi: 10.1017/S0047404502020286
    https://doi.org/10.1017/S0047404502020286 [Google Scholar]
  12. (2003) Koreans, Chinese or Indians? Attitudes and ideologies about non-native English speakers in the United States. Journal of Sociolinguistics, 7(3). 348–364. doi: 10.1111/1467‑9481.00228
    https://doi.org/10.1111/1467-9481.00228 [Google Scholar]
  13. Lippi-Green, R.
    (1997) English with an accent. London: Routledge.
    [Google Scholar]
  14. McCoy, S. , Marks, Jr, P. V. , Carr, C. L. & Mbarika, V.
    (2004, January 5–8) Electronic versus paper surveys: analysis of potential psychometric biases. Paper presented at the37th Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences 2004 (HICCS’ 04) (p. 80265c). RetrievedOctober 3, 2006, fromcsdl2.computer.org/comp/proceedings/hicss/2004/2056/08/205680265c.pdf.
    [Google Scholar]
  15. Morton, S. L. , Munro, M. & Derwing, T. M.
    (2005) The mutual intelligibility of L2 speech. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 28, 111–131.
    [Google Scholar]
  16. Mueller, D. J.
    (1986) Measuring social attitudes: A handbook for researchers and practitioners. New York: Teachers College Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  17. Munro, M. J. & Derwing, T. M.
    (1995a) Processing time, accent, and the comprehensibility in the perception of native and foreign-accented speech. Language and Speech, 38(3), 289–306.
    [Google Scholar]
  18. (1995b) Foreign accent, comprehensibility, and intelligibility in the speech of second language learners. Language Learning, 45, 73–97. doi: 10.1111/j.1467‑1770.1995.tb00963.x
    https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-1770.1995.tb00963.x [Google Scholar]
  19. (2008) Segmental acquisition in adult ESL learners: A longitudinal study of vowel production. Language Learning, 58, 479–502. doi: 10.1111/j.1467‑9922.2008.00448.x
    https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-9922.2008.00448.x [Google Scholar]
  20. Pickering, L.
    (2006) Current research on intelligibility in English as lingua franca. Annual Review of Applied Linguistics, 26, 219–233. doi: 10.1017/S0267190506000110
    https://doi.org/10.1017/S0267190506000110 [Google Scholar]
  21. Powers, D. E. , Schedl, M. A. , Leung, S. W. & Butler, F. A.
    (1999) Validating the revised Test of Spoken English against a criterion of communicative success. Language Testing, 16(4), 399–425.
    [Google Scholar]
  22. van Wijngaarden, S. , Steeneken, H. & Houtgast, T.
    (2002) Quantifying the intelligibility of speech in noise for nonnative talkers. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 112, 3004–3013. doi: 10.1121/1.1512289
    https://doi.org/10.1121/1.1512289 [Google Scholar]
  23. Zielinski, B.
    (2006) The intelligibility cocktail: An interaction between speaker and listener ingredients. Prospect, 21, 22–45.
    [Google Scholar]
  24. (2008) The listener: No longer the silent partner in reduced intelligibility. System, 36, 69–84. doi: 10.1016/j.system.2007.11.004
    https://doi.org/10.1016/j.system.2007.11.004 [Google Scholar]
http://instance.metastore.ingenta.com/content/journals/10.1075/aral.35.1.04fra
Loading
  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): accent , attitudes , comprehensibility , intelligibility and listener characteristics
This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was successful
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error