14th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences (ICPhS-14)

San Francisco, CA, USA
August 1-7, 1999

A CALL System for Correcting Vowel Insertions in English Spoken by Native Speakers of Japanese

Goh Kawai, Ching Siu Lim, Keikichi Hirose

University of Tokyo, Department of Information and Communication Engineering, Tokyo, Japan

We developed a computer-aided language learning system for correcting vowel insertion errors in English pronounced by native speakers of Japanese learning English as a foreign language. The system's core component is a speech recognizer using a pronunciation lattice of American English phones plus Japanese vowels where anaptyxis may occur. The system displays English words and sentences on the computer screen and asks the learner to read them aloud. The reading material contains consonant clusters and syllable-final consonants that trigger vowel insertion errors. Loans from English having fixed Japanese pronunciations are included to illustrate pronunciation differences between the two languages. Phonological rules convert pronunciation patterns of correct English to Japanese-accented English. The system alerts the learner whenever inserted vowels are detected. The learner can adjust the speech recognizer's sensitivity to practice at different levels of difficulty.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Kawai, Goh / Lim, Ching Siu / Hirose, Keikichi (1999): "A CALL system for correcting vowel insertions in English spoken by native speakers of Japanese", In ICPhS-14, 767-770.