L2 phonetics research | conference proceedings

Conference presentations
Tsukada, K., Birdsong, D., Bialystok, E., Mack, M., Sung, H. and Flege, J. (2003). The perception and
production of English /ɛ/ and /æ/ by Korean Children and Adults living in North America. In M. Solé, D.
Recasens & J. Romero (Eds)
Proceedings of 15th International Congress of Phonetics Sciences, Barcelona:
Casual Productions, Pp. 1589-1592.

Flege, J. (2002). No perfect bilinguals. In A. James and . Leather (Eds) New Sounds 2000: Proceedings of the
Fourth International Symposium on the Acquisition of Second-Language Speech
. University of Klagenfurt, Pp.
132-141.

Baker, W., Trofimovich, P., Mack, M. and Flege, J. (2002). The effect of perceived phonetic similarity on non-
native sound learning by children and adults. In B. Skarabela, S. Fish and A. Do (Eds)
Proceedings of the 26th

Birdsong, D. & Flege, J. (2001). Regular-irregular dissociations in the acquisition of English as a second
language. In
BUCLD 25: Proceedings of the 25th Annual Boston University Conference on Language
Development
, Boston, MA: Cascadilla Press, Pp. 123-132.
Guion, S., Flege, J., & Loftin, J. (1999). The effect of L1 use on foreign accent ratings in Quicha-Spanish
bilinguals. In J. Ohala, Y. Hasegawa, M. Ohala, D. Granveille and A. Bailey (Eds)
Proceedings of the XIVth
International Congress of Phonetics Sciences
, Berkeley, CA: Department of Linguistics, UCLA, Pp. 1471-1474.

Flege, J., Yeni-Komshian, G. & Liu, S. (1999). Age Constraints on learning L2 phonology and morphosyntax.
Proceedings of the the Joint Meeting of the 16th International Congress on Acoustics and the 137th Meeting of
the Acoustical Society of America
, Berlin, 15-19 March, 1999.  

Piske, T., Flege, J., MacKay, I., & Meador, D. (1999). Non-natives’ production of vowels in conversational
speech.
Proceedings of the the Joint Meeting of the 16th International Congress on Acoustics and the 137th
Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America
, Berlin, 15-19 March, 1999.

Flege, J. (1998). The role of subject and phonetic variables in L2 speech acquisition. In M. Gruber, D. Higgins,
K. Olsen and T. Wysocki (Eds)
Papers from the 34th Annual Meeting of the Chicago Linguistic Society, Volume
II, The Panels
.  Chicago:  Chicago Linguistic Society. Pp. 213-232.

Flege, J. (1998). Second-language Learning: The role of subject and phonetic variables. In Proceedingsof the
ESCA Workshop on Speech Technology in Language Learning
(Marholmen, Sweden, May 24-27, 1998). Pp. 1-
9.

Flege, J., Guion, S., Akahane-Yamada, R., & Downs-Pruitt, J. (1998). Categorial discrimination of English and
Japanese vowels and consonants by native Japanese and English subjects. In  P. Kuhl and L. Crum (Eds)

Proceedings of the 16th International Congress on Acoustics and the 135th Meeting of the Acoustical  Society
of America, Volume IV,
 New York: Acoustical Society of America, Pp. 2973-2974.

Nozawa, T., & Flege, J. (1998). Perception of English vowels by Japanese speakers residing in the United
States, In:
Psychology and Learning of Language, Tokyo: Kinseido (Japan Society of Speech), Pp. 65-77.

Flege, J. (1997). The role of category formation in second-language speech learning. In J. Leather and A.
James (Eds)
New Sounds 97, Proceedings of the Third International Symposium on the Acquisition of Second-
Language Speech,
Klagenfurt, Austria: University of Klagenfurt, Pp. 79-89.

Hillenbrand, J.,and Flege, J. (1992). Application of acoustic techniques to the assessment of speech disorders.
In Assessment of Speech and Voice Production: Research and Clinical Applications. NIDCD Monograph.
National Institute of Deafness and Other Communication Disorders. Pp. 53-62.

Bohn, O., Flege, J., Dagenais, P., & Fletcher, S. (1991). Effects of bite-block and loud speech on tongue
heights in the production of German vowels. In
Proceedings of the 12th International Congress of Phonetic
Sciences, Volume 3
, Pp. 70-73.

Flege, J. (1984). The detection of foreign accentedness. In A. Cohen and M. van den Broecke (Eds)
Proceedings of the 10th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences, Dordrecht: Foris, Pp. 677-681.

Flege, J. (1982). English speakers learn to suppress final stop devoicing, In R. Chametzky, R. Hirzel and K.
Tuite (Eds)
Papers from the 18th Regional Meeting, Chicago: Chicago Linguistic Society, Pp. 111-122.

Flege, J., Brown, W., Jr., & White, K. (1982). Voicing control in child speech, In T. Kastor-Bennett (Ed) Mid-
America Linguistics Conference Proceedings,
Wichita State University,  Dept. of English, Pp. 11-31.

Flege, J. & Hammond, R. (1981). Speakers' awareness of some non-segmental phonetic aspects of foreign
accent. In M. Henderson (Ed)
1980 Mid-America Linguistics Conference Papers, University of Kansas, Dept. of
English, Pp. 145-163.

Flege, J. (1980). Temporal correlates of [voice] in Arabic-accented English. In J. Wolfand D. Klatt (Eds) Speech
Communication Papers Presented at the 97th Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America
, New York,
Acoustical Society of America, Pp. 171-175.
Flege, J. (2012). The role of input in second language speech learning. VIth International Conference on
Native and Non-native accent of English. Lodz, Poland  6-8 December 2012.

Note: This is a slightly edited version of the keynote I  presented at New Sounds 2010. The aim of the talk was
to consider four hypotheses regarding age-related effects on L2 speech acquisition. A lot of territory is covered
here. However, I call your attention especially to the discussion of why the Johnson & Newport (1987) study
does not provide convincing evidence in support of a "maturational" account of age effect on L2 learning. I've
replotted some data from our JML article (Flege et al. 1999). The study tested the critical period hypothesis by
examining 240 Korean immigrants to the US. Several factors other than the age of L2 learning, including
education in the US and amount of English use, might well account for most of the variance in the two outcome
variables (foreign accent ratings, morphosyntax scores). Interestingly, the cross-over from Korean-dominant to
English dominant occured at an AOA of 12 years.
Flege, J. (2005). The origins and development of the Speech Learning Model. Keynote lecture at the 1st
Acoustical Society of America Workshop on L2 Speech Learning, Simon Fraser University, Vancouver, CA
(April 14-15, 2005). [conference presentation]
Flege, J. (2010). "Age" effects on second language acquisition. New Sounds 2010, 1-3, 2010, Poznań, Poland.

Note: This is a slightly edited version of the keynote I  presented at New Sounds 2010. The aim of the talk was
to consider four hypotheses regarding age-related effects on L2 speech acquisiton. A lot of territory is covered
here. However, I call your attention especially to the discussion of why the Johnson & Newport (1987) study
does not provide convincing evidence in support of a "maturational" account of age effect on L2 learning. I've
replotted some data from our JML article (Flege et al. 1999). The study tested the critical period hypothesis by
examining 240 Korean immigrants to the US. Several factors other than the age of L2 learning, including
education in the US and amount of English use, might well account for most of the variance in the two outcome
variables (foreign accent ratings, morphosyntax scores). Interestingly, the cross-over from Korean-domiant to
English dominant occured at an AOA of 12 years.
Aoyama, K., Flege, J., Guion, S., Akahane-Yamada, R. and Yamada, T. (2003). Foreign accent in English
words produced by Japanese children and adults. In M. Solé, D. Recasens and J. Romero (Eds)
Proceedings of
15th International Congress of Phonetics Sciences
, Barcelona: Casual Productions, Pp. 3201-3204.

Imai, S., Flege, J. and Walley, A. (2003). Spoken word recognition of accented
and unaccented speech: Lexical factors affecting native and nonnative listeners. In M. Solé, D. Recasens and
J. Romero (Eds)
Proceedings of 15th International Congress of Phonetics Sciences, Barcelona: Casual
Productions, Pp. 845-848.
McAllister, R., Flege, J., & Piske, T. (1999) The acquisition of Swedish Long vs. Short contrasts by nativve
speakers of English, Spanish and Estonioan. In J. Ohala, Y. Hasegawa, M. Ohala, D. Granveille and A. Bailey
(Eds)
Proceedings of the XIVth International Congress of Phonetics Sciences, Berkeley, CA: Department of
Linguistics, UCLA, Pp. 751-754.

Piske, T. & MacKay, I. (1999). Age and L1 Use effects on degree of foreign accent in English. In J. Ohala, Y.
Hasegawa, M. Ohala, D. Granveille and A. Bailey (Eds)
Proceedings of the XIVth International Congress of
Phonetics Sciences
, Berkeley, CA: Department of Linguistics, UCLA, Pp. 1433-1436.
Flege, J.. (1999). The relation between L2 production and perception. In J. Ohala, Y. Hasegawa, M. Ohala, D.
Granveille and A. Bailey (Eds)
Proceedings of the XIVth International Congress of Phonetics Sciences
(Berkeley, CA: Department of Linguistics, Univ. of California at Berkeley), Pp. 1273-1276.

Abstract: It has been claimed that a correlation does not exist between how accurately experienced late
learners produce and perceive phonetic segments in a second language (L2). According to one theory,
learners of an L2 are no longer able to align segmental production and perception after the passing of a critical
period. This contribution reviews studies that have examined L2 production and perception. All of the studies
yielded significant, albeit modest,correlations. Possible explanations for why stronger correlations have not
been observed are presented.

Comment: The article lays out the SLM hypothesis regarding the relation between segmental production and
perception in an L2, namely: "The accuracy with which L2 segments are perceived limits how accurately they
will typically be produced (p. 1273). The article notes that "not all aspects of perceptual learning may be
incorporated into production. That is, production and perception may not be brought into perfect alignment, as
is the case in LI speech acquisition. Thus, the SLM predicts that modest correlations will exist between L2
segmental production and perception for highly experienced speakers of an L2."

For further discussion of the relation between production and perception, including analysis techniques, see
Discussion Topic 4.
Flege, J.E. (2016). The role of phonetic category formation in second language speech acquisition. Eight
International Conference on Second Language Speech, 10-12 June, 2016, Aarhus University, Denmark.

Abstract: In 1995, after 15 years of preliminary work, I formally presented the Speech Learning Mode. A key
aspect of this L2 speech acquisition model was the hypothesis is that learners of any age, even late learners,
retain the capacities used in successful L1 speech learning, including the capacity to create new phonetic
categories for certain L2 sounds. In the first part of this talk I describe the both general and specific properties
of phonetic categories, referred to as "containers" in which learners store and structure information in long term
memory pertinent to classes of speech sounds. Then I present studies providing evidence for the formation of
phonetic categories for English /p/, by native speakers of Spanish; for English
/ɝ/, by native speakers of Italian;
and for English /r/, by native speakers of Japanese. I conclude the talk with a brief summary, indicating what it is
that we still don't know about L2 category formation, and identifying obstacles to complete understanding of this
crucial aspect of L2 speech learning.
Flege, J.E. (2017). Imparare la pronuncia di una lingua straniera: Possiamo farlo anche noi anziani? Circolo
Culturale «Enrico Pocci»  Via G. Verdi, 7  Tuscania (VT)
Flege, J.E. (2017) The cross-language acquisition of stops differing in VOT: Historical overview and key
findings. Phonetic Teaching and Learning Conference 2017, University College London. 9-12 August 2017.

Part 1: Historical overview of VOT

A great deal of L2 research has focused on the Voice onset time (VOT) dimension in word-initial stop
consonants. Interest in the VOT dimension arises from the fact that languages differ in terms of how VOT is
used to distinguish phonemes (e.g., /b/ vs /p/) and to the fact that the VOT dimension provides a useful
bridge between production and perception. Other considerations are that it is easy to measure VOT and to
create perceptual continua consisting of stimuli that differ in VOT. Alas, it is also possible to make errors
when using VOT to evaluate segmental production and perception.

This talk reviews the VOT dimension from the perspective of cross language differences, inter-lingual
identification, phonetic theory, L1 acquisition and L2 learning. A proposal deriving from the L1 acquisition
research is that learners of an L2 may need as much as 10 years of native speaker input to produce and
perceive L2 stops accurately. The discussion of phonetic organization focuses on the nature of phonetic
categories and the language-specific realization rules used to motorically output the phonetic categories in
speech production. Also included is a consideration of individual differences and a review of studies
examining the capacity of adults to learn to use VOT differently when learning an L2.
Part 2: The cross-language acquisition of stops differing in VOT: Key findings

This review of the literature led to the following conclusions regarding the production and perception of word-
initial consonants by native speakers of Romance languages who learn English as an L2

1. Learning to perceive and produce the VOT dimension depends more importantly on the phonetic input
received than on age of L2 learning;

2.Learners of all ages retain the speech-learning capacities available to children who learn an L1, including
the capacity to make effective of use of input and establish new phonetic categories and phonetic realization
rules;

3. For native speakers of Romance languages learning of English /b d g/ and /p t k/ proceed differently due
to differing patterns of cross-language differences;

4. Native speakers of Romance languages do not establish new phonetic categories for English /b d g/.
Instead, they restructure their L1 phonetic categories for use in two languages on the basis of the input they
have received;

5. On the other hand, native speakers of Romance languages who receive adequate phonetic input do
establish new phonetic categories for English /p t k/;

6. Doing so does not cause them to “lose” their L1 phonetic categories for /p t k/. As a result, they have three
categories for stops consonants, not just two as is the case for monolingual speakers of English and
Romance languages;

7.Those who begin to produce L1 /b d g/ with short-lag VOT values as the result of long-term exposure to
such stops in the L2 slightly increase VOT in L1 /p t k/ in order to avoid producing L1 /b d g/ and /p t k/ with
the same short-lag VOT values
Flege, J.E. (2017) The cross-language acquisition of stops differing in VOT: Historical overview. SICSS
2017: 2017 Seoul International Conference on Speech Sciences,  10–11 November 2017, Seoul National
University, Korea

Flege, J.E. (2017) The role of input in the acquisition of L2 stops. SICSS 2017: 2017 Seoul International
Conference on Speech Sciences,  10–11 November 2017, Seoul National University, Korea
This talk examines the role of input in the perception and production of L2 stop consonants, focusing on the
VOT dimension. I review results obtained in research with native Italian learners of English in Canada. The
results convinced me that input is a far more important determinant of success in L2 speech learning than
the age at which L2 learning begins. Many believe that native vs. non-native differences are often due to
differences in age of L2 learning (AOL). Immigrants' AOA is more important in our research because it
conditions the kind of experience our participants had with English, defining both the quantity and quality of
input they received over the course of their lives
Flege, J.E. (2018). The Critical Period Hypothesis fails to predict L2 foreign accent
and segmental production accurac
y. Research Frontiers of Second Language
Speech
, April 14-15 2018, Nanjing University of Science and Technology, China.

Lenneberg (1967) was correct in saying that most people who begin learning an L2
after puberty usually speak it with a foreign accent (FA), but predictions generated
by his critical period hypotheses (CPH) do not conform well to deta
iled analyses of
FA. First, individuals who learned their L2 as young children and have spoken it for
decades as their primary language speak their L2 with FA. Second, the strength of
a FA grows tends to grow increasing strong after the closure of the hypothesized
critical period. Further, the focus on L2 learning that has been promoted by
widespread acceptance of the CPH has
diverted attention away from a a very
important aspect of FA, that is, the presence of an L2 inspired FA in the native
language of bilinguals.
A consideration of segmental production and perception by
L2 learner
s casts further doubt on the validity of the CPH. Individuals who learned
the L2 as young children differ significantly from native speakers of the target L2. In
some cases adults who began learning the L2 at the ages of 8 and 20 ages perform
the same in the L2. Taken as a whole, the results of phonetically oriented research
has not supported the CPH, and so I propose that it be rejected.
Flege, J.E. (2018). How the revised Speech Learning Model (SLM-r) works for word-
initial stop consonants.Research Frontiers of Second Language Speech
, April 14-
15
2018, Nanjing University of Science and Technology, China.

In this talk I
review research examining the production and perception of word-initial
stops by speakers of two Romance languages,
Spanish and Italian. In an aspiration
language like English, the phonetic basis of voiced-voiceless distinctions is the
presence vs absence of aspiration following release while in Romance languages it
is the presence vs absence of glottal pulsing prior to release of word-initial stops.
Different tasks face L1 Romance learn
ers of English  for voiced and voiceless
stops. The task for /p t k/ is to establish new “long lag” phonetic categories. As
predicted by the SLM-r, the L2 learners examined manage to do so if they obtain
ed
a sufficient amount of native speaker input. The learning task for /b d g/. is
different. In English these
stops can realized with lead or short-lag VOT values. L1
Romance learners cannot create new “short lag” phonetic categories
for them
because this portion of the phonetic space (shared across languages) is already
occupied by short-lag realizations of
L1 /p t k/. It would be easy for Romance L1
learners to simply continue producing English /b d g/ with full pre
-voicing. After all,
some native speakers of English do so. However, as predicted by the SLM-r,
Romance L1 learners
of English L2 begin showing the English pattern, producing:
full pre-voicing, prevoicing that ends before release, and short-lag VOT. A
lso as
predicted by the SLM-r, the mix depends on the input they have received, and
effects of the (seemingly unnecessary) learning that has occurred in English is
carried back into the L1.