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STRESS-BASED MISTAKES IN VOWEL QUALITY MADE BY SLOVAK LEARNERS OF ENGLISH

H. Vancova

Trnava University in Trnava (SLOVAKIA)
Word stress affects the quality of the English vowels in polysyllabic words, as vowel quality results from the interplay of the preceding or following sounds in a word. The words pronounced in a continuous speech are governed by a distinct set of rules to the pronunciation of individual words. Also, a full vowel can lose its voicing, and on the contrary, a reduced vowel can become full when the structure of a word is changed by a suffix shifting the word stress. Adapting vowel quality to the constantly moving stress in a word represents a challenge for many foreign learners of English. The presented study aims to analyse the mistakes in the pronunciation of vowels in English words based on the transcription tasks performed by the Slovak learners of English who completed a blended learning course of phonetics and phonology. The data show the necessity to devote attention to the issue, as the mistakes are not infrequent. The paper was supported by the Rector’s grant scheme for research projects (Trnava University in Trnava, no. 6/TU/2019 Suprasegmental features in the English language).