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LINGUIST List 21.4407

Thu Nov 04 2010

Diss: Lang Acq/Phonetics/Phonology: Chang: 'First Language Phonetic...'

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        1.     Charles Chang , First Language Phonetic Drift During Second Language Acquisition

Message 1: First Language Phonetic Drift During Second Language Acquisition
Date: 02-Nov-2010
From: Charles Chang <cbchangpost.harvard.edu>
Subject: First Language Phonetic Drift During Second Language Acquisition
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Institution: University of California, Berkeley
Program: Phonology Lab
Dissertation Status: Completed
Degree Date: 2010

Author: Charles B. Chang

Dissertation Title: First Language Phonetic Drift During Second Language Acquisition

Dissertation URL: http://linguistics.berkeley.edu/dissertations/Chang_dissertation2010.pdf

Linguistic Field(s): Language Acquisition

Subject Language(s): English (eng)
                            Korean (kor)

Dissertation Director:
Susanne Gahl
Carla Hudson Kam
Keith Johnson
Sharon Inkelas

Dissertation Abstract:

Despite abundant evidence of malleability in speech production, previous
studies of the effects of late second-language learning on first-language
production have been limited to advanced learners. This dissertation
examines these effects in novice learners, finding that experience in a
second language rapidly, and possibly inexorably, affects production of the
native language. In a longitudinal study of Korean acquisition, native
English-speaking adult learners (n=19) produced the same English words at
weekly intervals over the course of intensive elementary Korean classes.
Results of two acoustic case studies indicate that experience with Korean
rapidly influences the production of English, and that the effect is one of
assimilation to phonetic properties of Korean. In case study 1, experience
with Korean stop types is found to influence the production of English stop
types (in terms of voice onset time and/or fundamental frequency onset) as
early as the second week of Korean classes, resulting in the lengthening of
VOT in English voiceless stops (in approximation to the longer VOT of the
perceptually similar Korean aspirated stops) and the raising of F0 onset
following English voiced and voiceless stops (in approximation to the
higher F0 levels of Korean). Similarly, in case study 2, experience with
the Korean vowel space is found to have a significant effect on production
of the English vowel space, resulting in a general raising of females'
English vowels in approximation to the overall higher Korean vowel space.
These rapid effects of second-language experience on first-language
production suggest that cross-language linkages are established from the
onset of second-language learning, that they occur at multiple levels, and
that they are based not on orthographic equivalence, but on phonetic and/or
phonological proximity between languages. The findings are discussed with
respect to current notions of cross-linguistic similarity, exemplar models
of phonology, and language teaching and research practices.

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