Discrimination of German tense and lax vowels in German monolingual and German-Turkish an German-Russian bi-lingual children

Walkenhorst A (2017)
Presented at the Phonetics and Phonology in Europe, Köln.

Kurzbeitrag Konferenz / Poster | Englisch
 
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Abstract / Bemerkung
The phonetic correlates of the distinctive feature of tenseness in German vowels are duration (long vs. short) and (in most contrasts) vowel quality (more vs. less peripheral). According to phonological modelling, the lax vowels appear exclusively in closed syllables. The internuclear consonant in a word like [ˈbɛṭn̩ ] (beds) (in opposite to [ˈbe:.tn̩ ] to pray) is considered ambisyllabic and thus occupies the coda of the first and the onset of the second, reduced syllable [1]. German orthography is in accordance with the phonological modelling, marking the ambisyllabic consonant by doubling the consonant grapheme ( vs. ) [2]. It is claimed that children with L2 German, compared to children with L1 German, have more problems acquiring this orthographic marker [3]. It is assumed – but has not yet been experimentally tested – that this is caused by lower perceptive discrimination skills due to phonetic/phonological interferences from the L1 [3, 4]. So far, only few studies have investigated vowel perception in young learners of L2 German, but they do not take all of the tenseness contrasts in German into account [e.g. 5]. In the present study, an AX perception task suitable for children was employed to test perceptive discrimination abilities of all vowel tenseness contrasts except /ɛ: - ɛ/. The participants were monolingual German children (G n=22), bilingual German-Turkish (GT, n=37), and German-Russian children (GR, n=16). The vowel spaces of Turkish and Russian have less phonemes in comparison to German; tenseness is not a distinctive feature in these languages. A generalized linear mixed model (GLMM) was fit to the binomial data, with LANGUAGE as fixed factor and participants as random factor. It was revealed that the bilingual children as a group did not discriminate the items less accurately than the monolingual children (G vs. GT: z=.53, p=.60, G vs. GR: z=.48, p=.37, Fig. 1). More detailed inspection into the different vowel categories revealed that the groups showed different results for the /i: - ɪ/ contrast: GT bilinguals discriminated the pair less accurately than the German monolinguals (G vs. GT: z=-2.14, p=.03), while the Russian bilinguals did not differ significantly from the German monolingual group (G vs. GR: z=-1.50, p=.13, Fig. 2). This could be explained by possible L1 interference in auditory perception: Turkish has only one phoneme in the closed fronted unrounded vowel space (/i/), while Russian has two (/i, ɨ/). The ability to mark vowel tenseness in writing was further investigated by means of a longitudinal study with a subgroup of the earlier participants (n=12). The results show that some children with high perceptive accuracy rates, among them mono- and bilingual children, mark lax vowels with the vowel grapheme of their tense phonetic neighbour ([ɪ] , [ʊ] , [ʏ] <ö>). Thus they focus on phonetic detail instead of the abstract phonological structure of the syllable. From this observation one could hypothesize that high discrimination skills coupled with a teaching approach which does not take into account the phonological modelling of the syllable structure might lead to problems in writing the correct vowel graphemes. This seems to apply to mono- and bilingual children alike. Thus, high auditory perceptive skills might be linked to difficulties in acquiring the German orthographic markers of the vowel contrasts. [1] Hall, T. A. 2011. Phonologie: Eine Einführung. (2nd ed.). Berlin: De Gruyter. [Phonology. An Introduction]. [2] Fuhrhop, N. 2009. Orthografie. Heidelberg: Winter. [Orthography]. [3] Becker, T. 2011. Schriftspracherwerb in der Zweitsprache. Eine qualitative Längsschnittstudie. Baltmannsweiler: Schneider-V erlag Hohengehren [Acquisition of writing in the second language. A qualitative longitudinal study]. [4] Bredel, U. 2013. Silben und Füße im Deutschen und Türkischen – Orthographieerwerb des Deutschen durch türkischsprachige Lerner/innen. In Deppermann, A. (Ed.), Das Deutsch der Migranten. Berlin: De Gruyter, 369–390 [Syllables and (metric) feet in German and Turkish – Acquisition of German orthography by turkish-speaking learners]. [5] Darcy, I. & Krüger, F. 2012. Vowel perception and production in Turkish children acquiring L2 German. Journal of Phonetics, 40, 568–581. key words: language acquisition, acquisition of writing, L2 perception, vowel discrimination, L2 German, L1 Turkish, L1Russian
Erscheinungsjahr
2017
Konferenz
Phonetics and Phonology in Europe
Konferenzort
Köln
Konferenzdatum
2017-06-12 – 2017-06-14
Page URI
https://pub.uni-bielefeld.de/record/2959702

Zitieren

Walkenhorst A. Discrimination of German tense and lax vowels in German monolingual and German-Turkish an German-Russian bi-lingual children. Presented at the Phonetics and Phonology in Europe, Köln.
Walkenhorst, A. (2017). Discrimination of German tense and lax vowels in German monolingual and German-Turkish an German-Russian bi-lingual children. Presented at the Phonetics and Phonology in Europe, Köln.
Walkenhorst, Amrei. 2017. “Discrimination of German tense and lax vowels in German monolingual and German-Turkish an German-Russian bi-lingual children”. Presented at the Phonetics and Phonology in Europe, Köln .
Walkenhorst, A. (2017).“Discrimination of German tense and lax vowels in German monolingual and German-Turkish an German-Russian bi-lingual children”. Presented at the Phonetics and Phonology in Europe, Köln.
Walkenhorst, A., 2017. Discrimination of German tense and lax vowels in German monolingual and German-Turkish an German-Russian bi-lingual children. Presented at the Phonetics and Phonology in Europe, Köln.
A. Walkenhorst, “Discrimination of German tense and lax vowels in German monolingual and German-Turkish an German-Russian bi-lingual children”, Presented at the Phonetics and Phonology in Europe, Köln, 2017.
Walkenhorst, A.: Discrimination of German tense and lax vowels in German monolingual and German-Turkish an German-Russian bi-lingual children. Presented at the Phonetics and Phonology in Europe, Köln (2017).
Walkenhorst, Amrei. “Discrimination of German tense and lax vowels in German monolingual and German-Turkish an German-Russian bi-lingual children”. Presented at the Phonetics and Phonology in Europe, Köln, 2017.
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