The 4th International Symposium on Tonal Aspects of Languages

Nijmegen, The Netherlands
May 13-16, 2014

Development of Sensitivity to Tone Correlates by Learners of Mandarin

Li Bin, Shao Jing

City University of Hong Kong

This study examined how Vietnamese learners of Mandarin who varied in their learning experience perceived synthesized Mandarin tones. We aimed to assess whether and how learners’ sensitivity to tonal correlates is commensurate with their knowledge and experience in the target language. 60 Vietnamese learners of Mandarin in Hanoi, and native speakers of Mandarin, were recruited to participate in tone identification tasks. As expected, Mandarin speakers scored the highest among all groups of listeners. More advanced Vietnamese listeners performed better than inexperienced ones and the response patterns were resemble to the native Mandarin speakers. Results also suggest that experience in Mandarin interacted significantly with certain tonal correlate.

Index Terms: Mandarin tone, Vietnamese, tone perception, development

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Bin, Li / Jing, Shao (2014): "Development of sensitivity to tone correlates by learners of Mandarin", In TAL-2014, 156-159.