ERRORS IN PURE VOWEL SOUNDS AMONG SENIOR SECONDARY SCHOOL STUDENTS
ERRORS IN PURE VOWEL SOUNDS AMONG SENIOR SECONDARY SCHOOL STUDENTS
1.1 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
Language influences all forms of human endeavors as it is part and parcel of human`s daily activities. Brown (2002) says Language is the process by which humans acquire the capacity to perceive and comprehend it, as well as to produce and use words and sentences to communicate. It is through Language and communication that human beings are able to gain the knowledge, process of and hand it over to the succeeding generation. Hence, Language has brought about social refinement and educational advancement of the human race on earth. So, the importance of language can never be overemphasized.
Boadi (2001) maintains that English is one of the most influential languages in the world today due to its wide usage and acceptability among the international communities. In Nigeria, it has occupied an important position, being the only recognized official Language nationwide. This was as a result of the enforcement of English Language to Nigeria by the British colonial masters. Being a second Language (L2), acquiring and using it cannot be without hitches due to a host of other factors, some of which are mother tongue interferences and environmental background.
Iyiola (2010) state that Language could be non-verbal or verbal. Non-verbal Language is the process of communication through sending and receiving wordless or signs message. Most people are not even aware that they are sending a message. On the other hand, when information is exchanged or communicated through words this process is called verbal communication. Verbal communication takes place through face to face conversation, group discussion, counseling, interview, radio, television, calls, letters etc. it is of two types: either oral verbal communication or written verbal communication.
Bamgbose (1998) opines that, for one to be able to communicate effectively in the second language, one has to get acquainted with the rudiments and principles guiding the use of such a language. One of the principles for effective communication is the pronunciation of words. Pronouncing words correctly is very to effective communication as it promotes speedy assimilation of communicated ideas.
Every language surely has vowels. The vowel, an essential component of language whose mastering enable the language speakers to correct pronunciation. This would enhance their ability to deliver a message to the speakers of the same language. Richard (2002) says vowel is a speech sound produced without the significant constriction of the air flowing through the mouth. Vowels are produced when the airstream is voiced through the vibration of the vocal cords in the larynx, and then shape using the tongue and the lips to modify the overall shape of the mouth. The position of the tongue is a useful reference point for describing the differences between vowel sounds. Nathan (2008) state that, vowels are not classified in the same framework as consonants in traditional phonetics, because they are not made with significant obstruction in the oral tract.
According to Ramlan (2001), a pure vowel is a vowel in the production of which the organs of speech remains in a given position for an appreciable period of time. Kelly (2000) states that the word “pure” is used to differentiate single vowel sound from diphthong. When listening to the twelve (12) pure vowels, it is evident that five (5) of there are relatively long in duration, and seven (7) are relatively short. It is clear that the vowels will be the most likely cause of pronunciation or spelling difficulties for learners of English.
Jones (2011) asserts that one of the greatest challenges confronting speakers of English as a second language (ESL) is inability to pronounce most English sounds appropriately pronunciation is a vital aspect of language learning, as poor pronunciation distorts communication process. Senam and Ukut (2010) assert that: “Language is conceived primarily as spoken and heard, writing and reading come later; writing and reading are what makes a literate person… Effective communication involving speech delivery demands speaking intelligently and intelligibly.” Every speaker of a language requires good pronunciation skills. Akeredalu- Ale (2005) observes the appalling situation of spoken English in Nigeria and Ofulue (2007) says correct pronunciation skills are essential for intelligibility in a second Language context, noting further the need for “a renewed emphasis on effective Oral communication skills as a major requirement in the workplace, regardless of the discipline. For oral communication skills to be achieved, it must be enhanced through good pronunciation. In other words, good speaking requires good pronunciation, especially when one is communicating with people outside one`s immediate linguistic environment or speech community. Indeed every speaker is expected to produce correct forms of sounds in the language to ensure effective communication. Senam (2017) states that communication is the transmission of an idea, message or information from the source to the receiver.
Pronunciation is very important in today`s communication and currently there has been a shift from linguistic competence to a broader level of communication compliance. Effective communication is almost based on good pronunciation. Again, pronunciation is reckoned as not just production of the right phonemes but also as the foundation for the next level of speech analysis (Gilbert, 2010).
Pronunciation plays an important role in the totality of what may be described as good speech. Jones (1956) as cited in Roach (2009) describes good speech as a way of speaking which is clearly intelligible to all ordinary people. In this case, poor pronunciation may be the first cause of unintelligible utterances not only the grammar. This is why Linguistics is more concerned with the spoken, rather than the written word (Aitchison, 2003). Since speech is primary to every Language and central to human communication good pronunciation is indispensable. Every learner of English should by his interlocutors.
Ellis (2008) notes that an error in the technical sense takes place when the deviation arises as a result of lack of knowledge. It represents lack of competence. A mistake occurs when learners fail to perform their competence.
Brown (2007) states that the fact that learners do make errors, and that these errors can be observed, analyzed, and classified to reveal something of the system operating within the learner, led to a surge of study of learner`s errors, called error analysis. According to Gass and Selinker (2008), Error analysis is a type of linguistics analysis that focuses on the errors learners make.
Error Analysis, a branch of Applied Linguistics emerged in the sixties to reveal that learners errors were not only because of the learner`s native language but also they reflected some universal strategies. To Senam (2004) Errors can be taken as red flags; they provide windows onto a system that is evidence of the state of a learner`s knowledge of the L2. They are not to be viewed solely as a product of imperfect learning; hence, they are not something for teachers to throw their hands up in the air about.
Jowitt (1999) maintains that Error Analysis may be carried out in order to:
i. Find out how someone learns a language.
ii. Find out how someone knows a language, and
iii. Obtain information on common difficulties in language learning.
Thus, error analysis is the study and the analysis of error made by language learners which function is to give the information on how they learn a language, how well they know the language and what difficulties faced by them in achieving the objective.
According to the causes of error, Harmer (2001) explains that it is widely accepted that there are two distinct causes of error that most if not all students make at various stages.
a. L1 interference:
Students who learn English as Second Language (L2) already have a deep knowledge of at least one other language, and where L1 and English come into contact with one another there are often confusions which provoke errors in learner`s use of English. This can be at the level of sounds: Arabic, for example, does not have a phonemic distinction between /f/ and /v/, and Arabic speaker may say ferry when he means very. It can also be at the level of grammar and at the level of word usage.
b. Developmental errors:
For a long time, no researcher in child Language development has been aware of the phenomenon of “over-generalization.” This is best described in a situation where a child who starts talking by saying “Daddy went, they come” etc. perfectly correctly suddenly starts saying “Daddy goed and they comed.” What seems to happen is that the child starts to over-generalize a new rule that has been subconsciously leant, and as a result makes mistakes with things that he or she knew before.
Fauziati (2000) Identifies types of pronunciation error:
Substitution is a type of errors which are characterized by the replacement of an item (Crystal, 1985). A performance which the performer uses the wrong form of pronunciation, Substitution of a word such as heart /ha:t/ is pronounced as /hət / or /hɜ:t/ by generalizing the spelling combination e.g. in a word such as learn /lɜ:n/ and earn /ɜ:n /.
Insertion or addition is a type of errors which are characterized by the presence of an item, which should otherwise not appear in a well-formed utterance (Fauziati, 2000). In this context, one or more extra sounds are added or inserted to a word. For example inserting vowel /ə/ in words such as, studied /stʌdid / and is pronounced as
An omission is a type of errors which are characterized by the absence of an item that must appear in a well-formed utterance (Fauziati 2000). Certain sounds are not produced, entire syllable or classes of sounds may be deleted. Omission vowel /e/ in a word such as, develop /div’loped / is pronounced /diveləpt/.
Other sources which have contributed to error making include ignorance of the rule of restriction and incomplete application of rules [Richards, 2002].
Therefore, the teaching of pronunciation is crucial in the social system because it is a filter through which others see them and often discriminate against them. A teacher should help the student in other to acquire the acceptable accent of the target language. In many situations, the non-native teacher can be an adequate model provided he or she is a competent speaker of the English language. Arising from the foregoing, the researcher is interested in conducting research about errors analysis in English pure vowels pronunciation and its implication on oral communication of some selected secondary schools in BarkinLadi Local Government Area.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
Adegbija (2011) states correct pronunciation is a fundamental factor to effective oral communication. Therefore, the correct pronunciation of English speech sounds is a bridge to correct pronunciation of English words. A cursory observation of speech communication situation in Nigeria reveals that wrong pronunciation is a major problem in human communication.
The problem of articulation of English speech sounds in an environment where English is spoken as a second language (ESL) is an acknowledge phenomenon as there will be an advise effect of mother tongue (MT) of the learner to the learners second language during the second language learning process. Moreover, it is generally thought that English vowels are speech sounds that are less problematic to learners of the language as a second language. However, some vowel sounds constitute a serious problem to ESL student perhaps, as a result of learner’s linguistic and ethnic background.
Spoken English of secondary schools students as observed by the researcher is appalling and this greatly affects the pronunciations or oral performance of a student in English. Secondary school student in BarkinLadi has pronunciation problem in English speech sounds, especially pure vowels. Therefore, the question is how do they pronounce English pure vowels?
This above problem is what interest the researcher to carry out an error analysis in English pure vowel pronunciation and its implication on oral communication among some selected secondary schools in Barkin-Ladi Local Government Area of plateau state.
1.3 PURPOSE OF THE STUDY
The purpose of this study is to carry out the error analysis in English pure vowels pronunciation and its implication on oral communication of some selected senior secondary schools in Barkin Ladi Local Government Area. Other specific objectives are to:
i. Test the mastery of English pure vowels by secondary school students in Barkin Ladi Local Government Area;
ii. Identify the problematic pure vowels among secondary school students in Barkin Ladi Local Government Area;
iii. Find out what influences the general performance of secondary school students in Barkin Ladi Local Government Area, in their pronunciation of pure vowel sound;
iv. Ascertain the implications of the pronunciation of English pure vowels for oral communication among selected secondary school students in Barkin Ladi Local Government Area.
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
1. To what extent has our secondary school student’s master English pure vowels in BarkinLadi Local Government Area?
2. What are the problematic pure vowels among secondary school student in BarkinLadi Local Government Area?
3. How dons the general performance of secondary school students influence their pronunciation of pure vowel sounds?
4. What are the implications of the pronunciation of English pure vowels for oral communication among secondary school student in Barkin Ladi Local Government Area?
1.5 RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS
Ho: Students who have not been taught oral English are likely to encounter problems in the realization of pure vowel sounds.
Ha: Students who have been taught oral English are not likely to encounter problems in their realization of pure vowel sounds.
1.6 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
The study will be of importance as the finding will help teachers, students and also curriculum planners remedy to pronunciation and oral communication deficiencies.
To the teachers, they will come to understand the types of errors made by students in the use of pure vowels hence, they will employ teaching methods and adequate instructional materials for the proper teaching and learning of pure vowels at the senior secondary school level.
The curriculum planners will also benefit from this study due to the fact that they are saddled with the responsibility of structuring learning experiences, suggesting instructional materials and teaching methods. Therefore, this work shall serve as an evaluative tool for them to know that there is more work to be done in the aspect of teaching and learning of pure vowels sounds.
To the government who are the purse strings of education, they will provide adequate equipment for the teaching and learning of the pure vowel sounds. As the serious need for this will be brought to limelight.
The students will also benefit from the study as the recommendations made in this study will be for their benefits.
Finally, the study will be a source of reference for future researchers who wish to carry out research in this same field.
1.7 SCOPE AND DELIMITATION OF THE STUDY
This study covers error analysis in English pure vowel pronunciation and its implication on oral communication. It is limited to some selected secondary schools in Barkin Ladi Local Government Area; however, the findings of this study can be generalized to other parts of the state.
1.8 OPERATIONAL DEFINITION OF TERMS
Error: Is a term referring to a performance that takes place when deviation arises as a result of lack of knowledge.
Error Analysis: It is a technique for identifying, classifying and systematically interpreting the unacceptable forms produce by someone learning a foreign language, using any of the principles and procedures provided by Linguistics.
Pure English Vowels: Is a vowel in the production of which the organs of speech remains in a given position for an appreciable period of time
Pronunciation: Is the production of significant sound in two senses, first, the sound is significant because it is used as part of a code a particular language, second, it is used to achieve meaning in contexts of use.
Implication: Is a possible effect or result of an action or a decision.
Oral Communication: Is the process of expressing information or ideas by word of mouth.
- Format: ms-word (doc)
- Chapter 1 to 5
- With abstract reference and questionnaire
- Preview Table of contents, abstract and chapter 1 below
This Complete Project Material is Available for Instant Download Immediately After Payment of ₦3000.
Bank Name: United Bank of Africa (UBA)
Account Name: chianen kenter
Account Number: 2056899630
Account Type: savings