Learning foreign vowels. Kingston, J. Language and Speech, 46(2-3):295-348.
doi  abstract   bibtex   
Two hypotheses have recently been put forward to account for listeners' ability to distinguish and learn contrasts between speech sounds in foreign languages. First, Best's Perceptual Assimilation Model and Flege's Speech Learning Model both predict that the ease with which a listener can tell onenon-native phoneme from an other varies directly with the extent to which these sounds assimilate to different native phonemes (Best, 1994; also Best, McRoberts, & Goodell, 2001; Flege, 1991). Second, Logan, Lively, & Pisoni (1991)have argued that training listeners to identify nonnative phonemes teaches them sets of exemplars rather than more abstract distinctive feature values. Ireport here the results of three sets of experiments designed to test these hypotheses, in which American English listeners were trained to categorize German nonlow vowels. The first set of experiments show that some instances of the same contrast between German vowels are more easily discriminated than others, a result incompatible with the predictions of either Best's or Flege's models, but compatible with the alternative category recognition interpretation. Thesecond set of experiments reveals effects of contextual and speaker variation on listeners' ability to learn [tense] but not [high] contrasts between foreign vowels, and are thus at least partly compatible with an exemplar model of foreign category learning (Pisoni, Lively, & Logan, 1994; also Nosofsky, 1986). The third set of ex periments compares the predictions of Nosofsky's (1986) selective attention exemplar
@article{kingston_learning_2003,
	Author = {Kingston, John},
	Date = {2003},
	Date-Modified = {2017-04-19 08:04:07 +0000},
	Doi = {10.1177/00238309030460020201},
	File = {Attachment:files/5973/Kingston - 2003 - Learning foreign vowels.pdf:application/pdf},
	Journal = {Language and Speech},
	Keywords = {L2, phonetics},
	Number = {2-3},
	Pages = {295-348},
	Title = {Learning foreign vowels},
	Volume = {46},
	Abstract = {Two hypotheses have recently been put forward to account for listeners' ability to distinguish and learn contrasts between speech sounds in foreign languages. First, Best's Perceptual Assimilation Model and Flege's Speech Learning Model both predict that the ease with which a listener can tell onenon-native phoneme from an other varies directly with the extent to which these sounds assimilate to different native phonemes (Best, 1994; also Best, McRoberts, \& Goodell, 2001; Flege, 1991). Second, Logan, Lively, \& Pisoni (1991)have argued that training listeners to identify nonnative phonemes teaches them sets of exemplars rather than more abstract distinctive feature values. Ireport here the results of three sets of experiments designed to test these hypotheses, in which American English listeners were trained to categorize German nonlow vowels. The first set of experiments show that some instances of the same contrast between German vowels are more easily discriminated than others, a result incompatible with the predictions of either Best's or Flege's models, but compatible with the alternative category recognition interpretation. Thesecond set of experiments reveals effects of contextual and speaker variation on listeners' ability to learn [tense] but not [high] contrasts between foreign vowels, and are thus at least partly compatible with an exemplar model of foreign category learning (Pisoni, Lively, \& Logan, 1994; also Nosofsky, 1986). The third set of ex periments compares the predictions of Nosofsky's (1986) selective attention exemplar},
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