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ERIC Number: ED143000
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1977-Apr
Pages: 11
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: 0
Adult Comprehension of Black and Standard English.
Granger, Robert C.; Crane, Judith
This study compares the ability of 37 Standard-English-speaking graduate students to comprehend Black English versions of a set of 45 utterances with the ability of 37 comparable students to comprehend Standard English versions of the same utterances. Of the two stimulus tapes used (consisting of 45 sentences each), one was recorded in Black English and the other in Standard English. The sentences consisted of five examples each of nine features that contrast Standard English and Black English. The group of students that listened to the Standard English tape comprehended significantly more utterances than did the Black English group. Analysis of all errors made on Black English tape transcriptions, however, indicates that most comprehension difficulties were not due to inability to comprehend the contrastive feature: in 32 out of 37 cases, students who listened to the Black English stimulus tapes transcribed correctly more of the final 15 utterances than they did of the first 15 utterances, indicating an increase in comprehension with an increase in familiarity. The report concludes that a small amount of contact with a speaker may be sufficient to alleviate cross-dialect comprehension problems. (RL)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: N/A
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (New York City, April 1977)