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Perceptual assimilation and graded discrimination as predictors of identification accuracy for learners differing in L2 experience: The case of Danish learners' perception of English initial fricatives

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The present study had two aims: To examine how well two measures of perceived similarity of L2 sounds (perceptual assimilation and graded discrimination) predict identification accuracy for nonnative consonants, and to examine how L2 experience affects these measures and identification accuracy. Two groups of native Danish listeners differing in English language experience participated. Experiment 1 examined the perceptual assimilation of English initial fricatives to Danish categories, Experiment 2 examined how similar the participants perceived English fricative pairs to be. The results from these experiments generated predictions for the identification accuracy of English fricatives, which were examined in Experiment 3.
Results revealed, in general, the expected effect of L2 experience on all three perceptual measures. Perceived dissimilarity and perceptual assimilation predicted identification accuracy equally well, with one important exception where both measures failed. We discuss whether dissimilarity ratings could replace perceptual assimilation tasks in studies aimed at predicting L2 identification accuracy.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 19th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences, Melbourne, Australia 2019
EditorsSasha Calhoun, Paola Escudero, Marija Tabain, Paul Warren
Number of pages4
Place of publicationCanberra
PublisherAustralasian Speech Science and Technology Association Inc.
Publication year2019
ISBN (print)978-0-646-80069-1
Publication statusPublished - 2019
Event19th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences - Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre, Melbourne, Australia
Duration: 5 Aug 20199 Aug 2019


Conference19th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences
LocationMelbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre
SeriesProceedings of the International Congress of Phonetic Sciences

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