Perceptual Training in the development of Voice Onset Time in English (L2) by an Argentinean learner

A complex-dynamic approach

Keywords: perceptual training, Complex Dynamical Systems Theory, peak analysis, Voice Onset Time

Abstract

Based on the tenets of Complex Dynamic Systems Theory (CDST) (De Bot et al., 2007; De Bot, 2017) and following the Intelligibility Principle (Levis, 2005, 2018) in the definition of a pronunciation syllabus, this study aims to analyze the development of English Voice Onset Time in word-initial voiceless plosives produced by an Argentinian learner (L1: Spanish, L2: English and L3: Brazilian Portuguese). This is a longitudinal study of the period when this learner took part in perceptual training sessions on the English Accent Coach website (Thomson, 2019). Data were collected fortnightly over 12 months, in order to verify the development of the participant’s VOT patterns. Subsequently, following Van Dijk et al. (2011), Monte Carlo simulations were carried out to verify rising and falling developmental peaks. The results showed that the training contributed to lower the intra-subject variation rates in each data collection, as well as to rise the learner’s VOT durational values. These results are relevant as they suggest that training can be important even when applied to learners who already show some greater command of the trained phenomenon. 

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Author Biographies

Ubiratã Kickhöfel Alves, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), Porto Alegre, RS, Brasil.

Doutor em Linguística pela Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio Grande do Sul (PUCRS), em Porto Alegre, RS, Brasil; mestre em Letras pela Universidade Católica de Pelotas (UCPel), em Pelotas, RS, Brasil. Professor da Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), em Porto Alegre, RS, Brasil. Pesquisador do Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico (CNPq), Brasil. 

Felipe Guedes Moreira Vieira, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), Porto Alegre, RS, Brasil.

Graduando em Letras pela Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), em Porto Alegre, RS, Brasil. Bolsista de Iniciação Científica do Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico (CNPq), Brasil. 

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Published
2022-09-21
How to Cite
Alves, U. K., & Vieira, F. G. M. (2022). Perceptual Training in the development of Voice Onset Time in English (L2) by an Argentinean learner: A complex-dynamic approach. BELT - Brazilian English Language Teaching Journal, 13(1), e42967. https://doi.org/10.15448/2178-3640.2022.1.42967