The influence of lexical characteristics and talker accent on the recognition of English words by native speakers of Korean

Min Kyoung Choi, Jeffrey J. Holliday, Benjamin Munson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This study investigated the influences of lexical characteristics and talker accent on English spoken word recognition by first-language (L1) Korean second-language (L2) speakers of English. Stimuli were words that varied in phonological neighborhood density (PND) and word frequency (WF), produced by a L1 English speaker (L1 talker) and a L1 Korean speaker (L2 talker). Participants were 60 listeners from three groups: 20 L1 English speakers, 20 Korean L2 English speakers studying in the United States, and 20 Korean L2 English speakers studying in Korea. The 40 L2 English speakers varied widely in their estimated English proficiency. The results showed significant main effects of talkers, PND, and listener proficiency on word-recognition accuracy as well as significant interactions among stimulus talker (i.e., L1 vs L2 talker), PND, and WF and between stimulus talker and listener groups. However, we did not find that PND differentially affects word recognition in L2 learners, as had been found previously by Imai et al. [(2005). J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 117, 896-907] using the same design. Instead, our results paralleled closely those of Yoneyama and Munson [(2017). J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 141, 1308-1320], who examined L2 English speakers whose L1 was Japanese. These findings are discussed in light of the influence of L1 lexical structure on L2 phonological processing.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)769-782
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of the Acoustical Society of America
Volume150
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Aug 1

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank Melanie Putman and Veera Vasandani for transcribing the nonword responses. We also thank the individuals who provided accentedness ratings. This project was supported by the Department of Speech-Language-Hearing Sciences and the Graduate Research Partnership Program of the College of Liberal Arts at the University of Minnesota and the Ministry of Education of the Republic of Korea and the National Research Foundation of Korea (Grant No. NRF-2017S1A5A2A03068448).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Acoustical Society of America.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Acoustics and Ultrasonics

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