Volume 6, Issue 2
  • ISSN 1871-1340
  • E-ISSN: 1871-1375
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Most two-syllable English nouns exhibit trochaic stress, whereas most two-syllable English verbs exhibit iambic stress. This study examined whether ESL speakers whose native language is not a stress language acquire knowledge of stress typicality in English. Thirty native Chinese and 30 native English speakers participated in two grammatical decision tasks. Experiment 1 used English noun-verb homographs embedded in two grammatical frames (‘the ___’ and ‘to ___’). Both groups showed different response patterns to ungrammatical phrases. Experiment 2 used two-syllable non-homographs: typically-stressed nouns and verbs and atypically stressed nouns and verbs. Results indicated that stress typicality and grammatical frame both create expectations regarding word type, and these expectations affect lexical access in Chinese and English listeners in similar ways.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): lexical stress; second language acquisition; speech perception; stress typicality
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