ESSV Konferenz Elektronische Sprachsignalverarbeitung

Title: A Preliminary Study on the Inter-Lexical Pauses in L2 English Read by Chinese Students

Authors: Hongwei Ding, Rainer Jäckel, Rüdiger Hoffmann


This study is concerned with the organization of inter-lexical pauses of L2 English speech produced by Chinese students. Foreign language learners (L2 learners) have often been observed to lack a natural “rhythm” when reading aloud. This investigation analyzed read speech of 5 English sentences at three different speech tempos by 18 Chinese native speakers. We compared the patterns of inter-lexical pauses of the Chinese subjects in the collected speech with those of the native English speakers reported in previous literature. It was found that the Chinese speakers could hardly read English at a very fast speech rate. Their patterns of inter-lexical pauses were more similar to those of the native speakers at a slow or normal speech rate than at a fast speech rate. However, most inter- lexical pause patterns of L2 English by the Chinese speakers deviate from those of the native speakers, which may result in foreign-accented speech with degraded intelligibility. We suggest that the importance of the organization of pauses between words should be taken into account in L2 English speech learning and teaching.

Year: 2016
In session: Fremdspracherwerb, Dialekt- und Korpusanalyse
Pages: 191 to 197