LINGUIST List 15.1478

Mon May 10 2004

Diss: Applied Ling: Obed: 'Troublesome Sounds of...'

Editor for this issue: Tomoko Okuno <>


  1. onojukwu, Troublesome Sounds of the Nigerian Child: Ibibio - Igbo Templates

Message 1: Troublesome Sounds of the Nigerian Child: Ibibio - Igbo Templates

Date: Mon, 10 May 2004 13:42:52 -0400 (EDT)
From: onojukwu <>
Subject: Troublesome Sounds of the Nigerian Child: Ibibio - Igbo Templates

Institution: University of Calabar
Program: PhD Linguistcs
Dissertation Status: Completed
Degree Date: 2003

Author: Ojukwu Nlewemchi Obed

Dissertation Title:
Troublesome Sounds of the Nigerian Child: Ibibio - Igbo Templates

Linguistic Field: Applied Linguistics

Dissertation Director 1: Prof. Okon Essien
Dissertation Director 2: Dr. Michael Ekere
Dissertation Director 3: Dr. Paulinus Noah

Dissertation Abstract:

The complexities associated with the various strata of the life of
Nigeria, can be said to find some amplification also in its
plurilinguistic orientation. It houses well over five hundred
different languages. This, no doubt, is a most confound intricate
situation. In Developmental Linguistics (and allied areas),
therefore, the contemporary global trend is to carry out studies that,
firstly, establish the norm. And, then, from these standards, it will
be no much difficult task to streamline deviations. These deviations
are then approximated towards the said targets isolated a priori. In
our acclaimed "paradise" of languages (Nigeria), studies in this
regard, are relatively non-existent whereas from my interactions with
scholars in Europe, findings from research investigations are at the
peak. This work is based on two Nigerian Languages, Ibibio and Igbo.
It examines the speech of twenty-five children from both languages,
aged between 2;6 and 4;0. It draws from Ingram's (1976:11)
postulation of "...troublesome speech sounds", to seek to establish
such paradigm in Nigeria given Ibibio and Igbo. Speech samples of the
population were elicited in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State and Ofeme-Umuahia,
Abia State. These were tape-recorded and transcribed. By the
application of three different statistical coefficients in
quantitative analysis together with corresponding process analyses in
both data, this investigation validates the hypotheses put forward.
For the first time in Ibibio and Igbo linguistic and array of sound
segments, sound categories and sound sequences (within the SPE
framework and within the classical taxonomy) are identified as
particularly troublesome to the child's repertoire. We have been able
to isolate divergences in processes and sequences between Ibibio and
Igbo on the one hand, and also between Ibibio and English; and Igbo
and English, on the other hand. The implication is that some of the
assumptions transposed from English to Ibibio and Igbo hitherto, are
really incongruous with the reality of the Ibibio-Igbo situation.
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