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Phonetic and phonological influences in non-native intonation: an overview for language teachers.

By Ineke Mennen


Just as poor pronunciation can make a foreign language learner very difficult to understand, poor prosodic and intonational skills can have an equally devastating\ud effect on communication and can make conversation frustrating and unpleasant for both learners and their listeners. Language teachers have lately become more aware of this and have shifted the focus of their pronunciation teaching more towards the inclusion of suprasegmentals alongside segmentals with a view of improving general\ud comprehensibility (Celce-Murcia, Brinton and Goodwin 1996). It is therefore crucial for language teachers to be aware of current research findings in the area of foreign\ud (second) language learning of prosody and intonation, the type of prosodic and intonational ‘errors’ second language (L2) learners are likely to make, and in particular where these ‘errors’ stem from. The focus of this paper will be on intonation in L2 learning, but some related prosodic phenomena such as stress and rhythm will be\ud touched upon

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