Features of the speech of Finnish-speaking learners of French: focus on the prosodic components and the development of the foreign accent, liaison-related phenomena and comprehension problems

Projekt: Forskningsprojekt


Beskrivning (abstrakt)

The main objective of the research project is to study prosodic characteristics of Finnish-speaking learners of French. More precisely, the project aims at discovering how the prosody (pitch, speech rate, speech rhythm, stress, duration, pauses) of Finnish-speaking learners of French differ from the prosody of native French speakers, and which prosodic features of their speech create an impression of a foreign accent. Another important aspect of French pronunciation studied in this project is liaison (linking). More precisely, the project aims at finding out what kinds of manifestations of liaison occur in the speech of Finnish-speaking learners of French.

The development of the above-mentioned features will also be studied within the framework of this project. That is, the project aims at finding out how the prosody and the production of liaison (mistakes and correct performing) change when the level of spoken language proficiency of the learner is higher.
In addition, the project is directed towards comprehension problems. Indeed, one of the objectives of the project is to find out if prosodic features and liaison-related phenomena cause comprehension problems between Finnish-speaking learners of French and their native French teachers in classroom interaction. Other causes of comprehension problems as well as the ways in which comprehension problems are typically resolved in this type of classroom interaction will also be studied.

Both quantitative and qualitative methods will be used. More precisely, the methods used in the project will be instrumental and experimental phonetics as well as conversation analysis. Part of the data will also be analyzed statistically. Three types of data will be used in this project: auditive, audio-visual and experimental.

The project will have a big scientific impact in the interdisciplinary research fields of prosody, foreign accent, language learning and contrastive linguistics. By bringing up a new topic (learning of French as a foreign language) and an innovative combination of methods the project will also contribute internationally to the field of conversation analysis.

The results of the project can be directly applied to the teaching of French on different levels of education from primary schools to universities. Thus, the project will also have a big societal impact.
Gällande start-/slutdatum01/09/2020 → …



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