ERIC Number: ED192595
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1980
Reference Count: 0
Learning to Speak without an Accent: Acquisition of a Second-Language Phonology. Papers and Reports on Child Language Development, Number 18.
Mulford, Randa; Hecht, Barbara F.
An investigation of the naturalistic acquisition of a second language phonology, based on the case of a native Icelandic speaker learning the fricatives and affricates of English, reveals that neither transfer hypothesis nor the developmental hypothesis alone provides an adequate explanation of second language phonological development. This development is best accounted for by a systematic interaction between general processes of phonological development and transfer from the native language. Transfer best predicts the order of difficulty of English fricatives and affricates, while the developmental hypothesis best predicts sound substitution for difficult segments. The pattern of interaction between transfer from the native language and developmental processes noted for fricatives and affricates may be somewhat different for other types of phonological segments. Finally, variability--in language models, among different language learners, and in an individual child's production--is a complicating factor for any detailed analysis of phonological development. Several ways are suggested of taking these types of variability into account in future studies of second language phonological acquisition. (Author/JB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Stanford Univ., CA. Dept. of Linguistics.
Identifiers: Accents; Affricates; Fricatives; Icelandic
Note: Revised version of a paper presented at the Annual Boston University Conference on Language Development (4th, Boston, MA, September 14, 1979).