Second Language Pronunciation: Attainment and Assessment

This PhD study advances our understanding of the factors that constrain attainment and assessment of second language pronunciation.

Dr. Tanja Angelovska

Duration: 2007-2010 (completed). 

(Betreuung: Prof. Dr. Angela Hahn)

Drawing upon theoretical and methodological paradigms from speech science and applied linguistics, this study advances our understanding of the factors that constrain attainment and assessment of second language pronunciation. Its innovative aspects are the inclusion of unexplored language combinations and the triangulation of several research instruments. Speech ratings by native speaker judges in combination with interviews suggest that assessment of second language pronunciation entails a broad spectrum of influences.

The work contributes to the evidence against a simply construed critical period for phonological development and it reveals insights into the social relativity of accent. Thus, the myth, that every native speaker is a competent rater in all cases and always, is deconstructed.

This PhD project was funded by the Friedrich Ebert Foundation.

  • Angelovska, T. & Hahn, A. (2009). “English with a ‘native-like’ accent: An empirical study on proficiency.” In: Benati, Alessandro (ed.). Issues in Second Language Proficiency. Continuum Publishing, ISBN: 9780826435156. Co-author: Angela Hahn (p.147-169).
  • Angelovska, T. (2010). “An empirical research of individual differences in L2 oral proficiency. What makes native-like speakers special?” In Henderson, A. (ed.). (2010). English Pronunciation: Issues and Practices (EPIP), Proceedings of the First International Conference, Université de Savoie, Chambéry, France, ISBN 978-2-915797-73-2 (p.95-117).
  • Angelovska, T. (2012). Second Language Pronunciation: Attainment and Assessment. European University Studies. Series 14: Anglo-Saxon Language and Literature. Vol. 495, Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang, ISBN 978-3-631-63107-2. (209 p.)