First Advisor

Marjorie Terdal

Term of Graduation

Summer 1997

Date of Publication


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (M.A.) in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages


Applied Linguistics




English language -- Pronunciation by foreign speakers, English language, -- Spoken English -- Study and teaching (Higher) -- Japanese speakers



Physical Description

1 online resource (ix, 103 pages)


Japanese students of English have difficulty pronouncing /f/, Ir/, /1/, /v/ and "th", sounds that are either not present in their language, or as in the case of /r/, articulated in Japanese more like an English /di. Their difficulty with these sounds seems to affect their comprehensibility in English to native-speakers of English.

The purpose of this partial replication of a 1994 study by MacDonald, Yule and Powers was to test three different methods of pronunciation instruction ( and a control) to determine which promoted the greatest improvement in the pronunciation of the five target sounds among Japanese speakers. The three types of pronunciation instruction included two traditional methods: a teacher-led lesson, listening to audiotapes in a language lab; and an experimental method, which consisted of a two phase video self-monitoring activity.

There were two hypotheses governing this study: 1) that the group participating in the video self-monitoring activity would score fewer errors in the target sounds than the subjects of the other three groups on Post-test 1, and 2) that this same group would score fewer errors two days later on Post-test 2.

The native-speaker's evaluations of the results, which were registered as the number of inaccurate articulations of each of the five sounds, were subjected to a mixed-model ANOV A. Of the five phonemes, the hypotheses were supported for fl/ only, leading to the assumption that more time was necessary for the treatments to affect the subjects and that the native-speaker judges needed to be given an agreed upon level of acceptability for determining native-like pronunciation. However, results showed that for all five phonemes, the teacher-led classroom and language lab activity proved most consistent in fostering an improvement in pronunciation of those sounds, leading to the conclusion that the teacher can not be taken out of the equation in pronunciation teaching.


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