Consonant-vowel interaction and phonological structure processing in cross-language perceptual assimilation: Australian English CV syllables perceived by L1 Mandarin listeners
AffiliationSchool of Languages and Linguistics
Document TypeMasters Coursework thesis
Access StatusOnly available to University of Melbourne staff and students, login required
© 2018 Yizhou Wang
Research on cross-language phoneme perception has mainly focused on either vowels or consonants, but little is known about the difference of the perception patterns of the two groups of phonemes. Therefore, both non-native consonants and vowels were investigated in syllable combinations within the theoretical framework of Perceptual Assimilation Model (PAM). Native Mandarin listeners completed assimilation tasks (category identification and goodness rating) on CV syllables composed of six Australian English vowels /æ e iː ɪ ʉː ʊ/ and five consonants /b p d t h/. Results in general show that consonants and vowels have different perceptual patterns in a non-native setting, and the assimilation patterns of phonemes can vary across different phonological contexts. It is also found that the full range of native language syllable inventory is available to listeners in perceptual assimilation, and non-native listeners can analyze the CV syllable sounds as having different phonological structures. Individual differences were found in the perceptual pattern and were more salient in perceiving vowels than consonants. The findings suggest that a syllable-to-syllable point of view in cross-language speech perception may better reflect the nature of the processing mechanism for perceiving phonological structure.
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