Second language acquisition has rapidly grown as a field over the past decade, as our knowledge of the ways in which children and adults learn and use a second language has become crucial for effective language teaching. In addition to this important 'applied' function, research into second language acquisition has also informed the fields of linguistics and psychology in general, as it has shed light on the differences between native and non-native models of human language and cognition. The focus of this accessible new book is second language speech - that is, how speakers perceive, process, understand and pronounce the sounds of a second language. Each chapter includes review questions, and most chapters include 'tutorial' and 'lab' sections with practical exercises based on the University of Toronto Romance Phonetics Database (available online for free). The book also has a companion website, containing illustrated answers to the exercises, scripts for running acoustic analyses and useful weblinks.
Laura Colantoni is Professor in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese at the University of Toronto. Her research focuses on sound change and categorization and the second language acquisition of variable phonetic parameters. Jeffrey Steele is Associate Professor in the Department of French at the University of Toronto. His research focuses on second and third language acquisition as well as language assessment. Paola Escudero is Associate Professor in the MARCS Institute at the University of Western Sydney. Her research focuses on speech and visual development in diverse populations, including human infants, children and adults, and zebra finches.
Part I. Questions and Frameworks for the Study of Second Language Speech: 1. An introduction to second language speech research; 2. Theoretical concepts and frameworks; Part II. Research Methodology: 3. Research methodology; Part III. Case Studies and Analysis of L2 Speech Perception and Production: 4. Vowels; 5. Obstruents; 6. Sonorants; 7. Sequences; 8. Prosody; 9. Conclusion.