Third International Conference on Spoken Language Processing (ICSLP 94)

Yokohama, Japan
September 18-22, 1994

Pre-Nuclear Intonation in Questions of Japanese Students in English

Margaret Maeda

Tokyo Woman's Christian University, Tokyo, Japan

Intonation contours in questions in English of nineteen Japanese students are examined for their shape, placement of prominence and relative speeds of different parts of the contour, concentrating on the part before the nucleus. The students' prosody in English is compared with that of eight native speakers living in Britain, with their own prosody in Japanese, and with the prosody of two native-speaking English teachers in Japan. It is noted that the students prosody shows evidence of native-language transfer, learning strategies and teaching-induced error, and that the teachers' prosody shows acquisition of their students' interlanguage. It is questioned whether native-speaking teachers who acquire their students' interlanguage can be effective as native models for pronunciation.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Maeda, Margaret (1994): "Pre-nuclear intonation in questions of Japanese students in English", In ICSLP-1994, 1723-1726.