CE  Vol.4 No.9 B , September 2013
Application of Form-Focused Instruction in English Pronunciation: Examples from Mandarin Learners
Abstract: Training L2 learners’ pronunciation by using a controlled perception procedure has long been the mainstream of L2 speech pedagogy research. However, endeavors have also been done to explore more communicative teaching methods. The current study presents a paradigm that tests both communicative teaching methods’ renderings of pronunciation pedagogy and a form-focused instruction which is less used in pronunciation pedagogy. The authors introduced a focus-on-form method to pronunciation teaching by giving participants information about the speech articulators to help five Mandarin-speaking students to improve the accuracy in production of English /r/. For the sake of contrasting, another group of five students received communicative training for the same amount of time. Stimuli words for both groups in both pre-test and post-test were embedded in a discourse for participants to read aloud. Productions were recorded and went through both acoustic analysis and native speaker perception for the measurement of nativeness. Results showed that the focus-on form method is more effective at least in the presented participants to improve segmental pronunciation performance.
Cite this paper: Lan, Y. & Wu, M. (2013). Application of Form-Focused Instruction in English Pronunciation: Examples from Mandarin Learners. Creative Education, 4, 29-34. doi: 10.4236/ce.2013.49B007.

[1]   Asher, J. J. (1969). The total physical response approach to second language learning. The Modern Language Journal, 53, 3-17.

[2]   Asher, J. J., & Price, B. S. (1967). The learning strategy of the total physical response: Some age differences. Child Development, 1219- 1227.

[3]   Barrutia, R. (1970). Visual phonetics. The Modern Language Journal, 54, 482-486.

[4]   Browman, C. P., & Goldstein, L. (1992). Articulatory phonology: An overview. Phonetica, 49, 155-180.

[5]   Celce-Murcia, M. (1996). Teaching pronunciation audio cassette: A reference for teachers of English to speakers of other languages. New York: Cambridge University Press.

[6]   Derwing, T. M., & Munro, M. J. (2005). Second language accent and pronunciation teaching: A research-based approach. TESOL Quarterly, 39, 379-397.

[7]   Doughty, C., & Williams, J. (1998). Focus on form in classroom second language acquisition. New York: Cambridge University Press.

[8]   Flege, J. E. (1987). The production of “new” and “similar” phones in a foreign language: Evidence for the effect of equivalence classification. Journal of Phonetics, 15, 47-65.

[9]   Flege, J. E. (1995). Second language speech learning: Theory, findings, and problems. In W. Strange (Ed.), Speech perception and linguistic experience: Issues in cross-language research, 233-277.

[10]   Foote, J. A., Trofimovich, P., Collins, L., & Urzúa, F. S. (2013). Pronunciation teaching practices in communicative second language classes. The Language Learning Journal, (ahead-of-print), 1-16.

[11]   Fowler, C. A. (1986). An event approach to the study of speech perception from a direct-realist perspective. Journal of Phonetics, 14, 3-28.

[12]   Gattegno, C. (2010). Teaching foreign languages in schools: The silent way. Educational Solutions World.

[13]   Graham, S., Harris, K. R., & Loynachan, C. (1993). The basic spelling vocabulary list. The Journal of Educational Research, 86, 363-368.

[14]   Ingram, D. E. (1974). Beyond audiolingualism—A linguistic and psycholinguistic view. Babel, 10, 9-15.

[15]   Krashen, S. D., & Terrell, T. D. (1988). The natural approach: Language acquisition in the classroom, language teaching methodology series.

[16]   Kuhl, P. K. (2000). A new view of language acquisition. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 97, 11850-11857.

[17]   Ladefoged, P., & Johnson, K. (2010). A course in phonetics. Wadsworth Publishing Company.

[18]   Lado, R. (1961). Language testing: The construction and use of foreign language tests: A teacher’s book. Bristol, Inglaterra: Longmans, Green and Company.

[19]   Lado, R. (1964). Language teaching: A scientific approach.

[20]   Lehiste, I. (1964). Acoustical characteristics of selected English consonants. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University.

[21]   Long, M., & Robinson, P. (1998). Focus on form: Theory, research and practice. In C. Doughty, & J. Williams (Eds.), Focus on form in classroom second language acquisition. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.

[22]   MacIntyre, P. D., & Gardner, R. C. (2006). Methods and results in the study of anxiety and language learning: A review of the literature. Language Learning, 41, 85-117.

[23]   Morley, J. (1994). Pronunciation pedagogy and theory: New views, new directions. TESOL, 1600 Cameron Street, Suite 300, Alexandria, VA 22314.

[24]   Scovel, T. (1983). Emphasizing language: A reply to humanism, neo-audiolingualism, and notional-functionalism. M. A. Clarke and J. Handscombe, 85-96.

[25]   Shi, F. (2008). Yuyin Geju, phonetic patterns. Beijing: Shangwu.

[26]   Stevick, E. W. (1976). Memory, meaning and method: Some Psychological perspectives on language learning.

[27]   Widdowson, H. G. (1978). Teaching language as communication. New York: Oxford University Press.