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Trends in Phonetics and Phonology

Studies from German-speaking Europe

Edited By Adrian Leemann, Marie-José Kolly, Stephan Schmid and Volker Dellwo

This volume was inspired by the 9th edition of the Phonetik & Phonologie conference, held in Zurich in October 2013. It includes state of the art research on phonetics and phonology in various languages and from interdisciplinary contributors. The volume is structured into the following eight sections: segmentals, suprasegmentals, articulation in spoken and sign language, perception, phonology, crowdsourcing phonetic data, second language speech, and arts (with inevitable overlap between these areas).
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The influence of orthographic input on pronunciation: The case of assimilation across word boundaries in second language Danish



This paper aims at investigating whether orthographic input affects the pronunciation of second language learners of Danish in terms of assimilation over word boundaries. With regard to Danish, this field of research is particularly interesting, because there is a high discrepancy between the orthography and pronunciation of Danish (Davidsen-Nielsen, 2003), and this discrepancy is prominent in assimilation across word boundaries. Individual and group audio recordings of 12 Swiss university students of Danish as a foreign language were analysed for assimilation across word boundaries in 11 selected phrases that are usually assimilated in first language speakers. The results show that orthography has a different effect on the realisation of vowels as compared to the realisation of consonants. Furthermore, an interaction of speech style was found: Whereas for consonants, orthography has a lower effect on spontaneous speech than on read speech, for vowels, orthography is similarly influential in all recording conditions.


Second language acquisition, pronunciation acquisition, assimilation across word boundaries, Danish

*   Corresponding author;, Tel. +41 56 202 85 28 (Direkt).

a   Pädagogische Hochschule, Institut Vorschul- und Unterstufe, Bahnhofstrasse 6, 5210 Windisch (Raum 5.3C03). ← 363 | 364 →

1.0   Introduction

This study investigated orthographic effects on the pronunciation of second language (L2) Danish among L1 German speakers. One challenge for L2 learners of Danish is that the phonological inventory is very large and complex and that in addition the orthographic transparency is very low...

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