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Podcast-based pronunciation training: Enhancing FL learners’ perception and production of fossilised segmental features

  • Jonás Fouz-González (a1)
Abstract

This study investigates the potential of a podcast-based approach aimed at helping foreign language learners improve their pronunciation of features that tend to be fossilised in their interlanguage. Training took place over a period of three weeks in which podcasts were used for perceptual and productive practice as well as for peer evaluation. Participants in this study (N=47) were randomly assigned to two groups that acted as control and experimental at the same time. One group received training on the English /s – z/ contrast and the other one was trained on the pronunciation of English /b d g/ as stops in intervocalic position. Pre- and post-tests were used to measure the participants’ perception and production of the target features. The results show that training had a positive impact on the participants’ perception and production of the target sounds. Even though the differences between groups did not reach statistical significance for every sound in every task, the data reveal that the approach adopted could foster substantial improvements in the participants’ pronunciation of features that tend to be fossilised, even after short periods of training.

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