Identifier

etd-04102008-134208

Degree

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

Foreign Languages and Literatures

Document Type

Thesis

Abstract

Traditionally, there has been a lack of emphasis placed on proper second language (L2) pronunciation in recent theoretical perspectives on foreign language pedagogy. Pronunciation is important because it is indicative of a learner’s level of phonemic awareness, an important component of second language acquisition. Inaccurate pronunciation (and therefore poor phonemic awareness) is often the result of a lack of training in this area due to the focus on grammar and syntax in many language classrooms. One often-neglected method of training students in L2 pronunciation discussed in some theoretical literature is the use of authentic materials in the form of musical recordings. This thesis reports on the results of a lengthy longitudinal study in which the researcher measures the effects of musical training in the foreign language classroom on the acquisition of a series of phonemes in Spanish. Pretest and posttest scores for all participants in both the control and experimental groups were judged by native speakers of Spanish and assessed on a 5-point scale. The range of increase for the experimental group’s scores ranged from 5% to 53%, with 33.4% as the mean percent of increase. The results of this study indeed suggest that musical training is an effective manner of increasing learners’ pronunciation accuracy through developing phonemic awareness in the L2 classroom.

Date

2008

Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

King, Jeremy W.

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