Pronunciation Pedagogy and Intelligibility Issues in Language Acquisition

Manyasi N. Beatrice


Language teachers’ knowledge of pronunciation pedagogy affects their classroom practice. The study sought to find out language approaches used to teach pronunciation and to establish how teachers’ mastery of pronunciation facilitate the acquisition of sounds by learners. The findings revealed that teachers of English had challenges when teaching pronunciation hindering mastery of English sounds by learners. Some of their pronunciation was not comprehensible distorting meaning. They used imitation, phonetic transcriptions, minimal pair drills and sentence drills to teach pronunciation. It was established that some of them had pronunciation difficulties affecting the intelligibility or comprehensibility of what they were communicating about. Learners do not have to achieve native like pronunciation but they should surpass the threshold level to ensure that their pronunciation does not distort the meaning of what they communicate. When a teacher who is meant to be a role model and source of input for learners uses incomprehensible pronunciation distorting meaning, it is a significant setback to English Language Teaching (ELT). There is need to reassess policies concerning who should be trained to teach English as a Second Language.

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International Journal of English Language Teaching ISSN 2329-7913 (Print) ISSN 2329-7921 (Online)

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