The Importance of Pronunciation Among Saudi Learners in Second Language

Acquisition and Their Performance
Outline
Introduction: concerns what the assignment is about
Problem statement: This will focus on identifying the problem that will
be discussed
Objectives of the Study: This will highlight what the assignment tries
to examine
Research Questions: This part highlights the questions that the essay
tries to answer
Significance of the Study: This covers why the study is important
Literature Review: This part concentrates on giving views of other
researchers concerning the problem being studied
Methodology: This discusses the participants and data collection and
analysis concerning study of the problem under concern
Conclusion: This gives an analysis and views concerning the problem
under study
Each language has a rule for merging sound segments so as to make
meaningful words. While developing these sounds, children adopt these
sound rules via listening followed by trial and error. Later, they
develop a linguistic competence through which they recognize and produce
meaningful sounds. Alternatively, when students learn a foreign or
second language, they encounter some overlaps because of the different
phoneme systems of both languages (Soler, 2008). Hence, when they try
speaking a second language, they produce sounds that are closest to the
sounds that exist in their first language. For instance, most Arab
speakers pronounce the words cheap and play as sheep and blay. This kind
of pronunciation problem develops a vast hindrance in the process of
communication amid speakers. Besides, it spoils the learning and
teaching efforts in second language learning settings. In this
assignment, the importance of pronunciation to Saudi learners acquiring
English as a second language will be discussed. Besides, ways of
overcoming the problem of pronunciation among Saudi learners acquiring
English as a second language will also be discussed.
Problem Statement
Different Saudi learners, who desire to acquire English as a second
language have experienced the problem of pronunciation, which has
resulted in poor acquisition of the English language and poor
performance overall since English has become a common language used in
setting exams. Today, English has become Lingua Franca, which implies
that it is exceedingly vital to learn and understand the language
(Sharifian, 2009). In order to understand any language, it is crucial to
have the capacity to pronounce, write and read words of that language
this is not different in learning and understanding the English
language. The chief problem that this research deals with concerns the
issue of pronunciation among Saudi learners acquiring English as their
second language.
Objectives of the study
To understand the importance of pronunciation in the acquisition of
English as a second language
To establish whether the pronunciation is a common problem among Saudi
learners acquiring English as their second language
To find ways of solving the problem of pronunciation
Research Questions
Why is pronunciation important for Saudi learners acquiring English as a
second language?
Is pronunciation a common problem among Saudi learners acquiring English
as a second language?
How can the problem of pronunciation be solved among learners?
Significance of the Study
English is a vital language since it determines in the overall
performance of students. Therefore, pronunciation is also vital for
learners acquiring English as a second language since it helps them in
becoming proficient in the language. Hence, this study will help Arabia
learners in understanding the importance of pronunciation to the overall
performance. Besides, this study will help learners in solving the
problem of pronunciation. Apart from helping the learners, the study
will also help teachers in educating learners on how to end the problem
of pronunciation. In addition, this research will open up an avenue for
other studies conducted in the future regarding the problem of
pronunciation in learners acquiring English as a second language.
Literature Review
Saudi students learning English as a second language encounter various
problems with almost every component of language such as writing,
reading, vocabulary, grammar and pronunciation. At most of the time, all
the other components except pronunciation are greatly emphasized in
classroom teaching. As a result, learners come up with flawed
pronunciation that creates huge obstacles in the communication process.
According to Rakas (2008), the phonological system of any language acts
as a sieve through which everything, which is said passes. Every person
acquires the system of his first language. However, when he hears
another language, he intuitively utilizes the known phonological sieve
of his first language in analyzing what is being said in another
language. Nonetheless, since the phonological sieve is not suitable for
the foreign language, various mistakes and mispronunciations emerge
(Binturki, 2008).
The sounds of the second language receive incorrect phonological
interpretations because they become strained through the phonological
sieve of one’s own first language. The pronunciation of certain
consonants by Saudi learners is a major concern in teaching of English
as a second language. For instance, /p/ has no counterpart in the
phonemic system of the Arabic language therefore, it is voiceless and
is not easily realized by the Saudi learners (Kharma & Hajjaj, 1998).
This bilabial plosive is usually replaced by /b/, which possesses a
phonemic value in the phonemic system of the Arabic language. According
to Al-Shuaibi (2009), Saudi learners have a difficulty in the
pronunciation of English initial consonants that have three members and
final consonant clusters that have three and four members. In addition,
according to Al-Saidat (2010), Saudi English learners insert an
anaptyctic vowel in the onset and in the coda of certain English
syllables unintentionally. The chief contributor to declusterization
process is the first language influence.
Pronunciation is vital to the Saudi learners acquiring English as their
second language as it boosts their understanding of the English language
(Emad, 2010). Without proper pronunciation of words of a certain
language, it would be exceedingly difficult for a person to express
himself in that language however, correct pronunciation of words in a
certain language helps a person in expressing himself in that particular
language (Wahba, 1998). In case a person does not know how to pronounce
sounds properly, in a certain language, it will be difficult reading and
writing the language. Therefore, the proper pronunciation of English
sounds will help Saudi learners acquiring English as their second
language in reading and writing English language fluently. The proper
pronunciation of English words is vital as it helps learners in
enhancing their overall performance since English is usually set as the
primary language in setting exams.
In order to solve the problem of pronunciation, learners should be keen
on listening to English sounds during presentations, which include
radio, or TV show presentations, lecturers and movies. An exposure to
the presentations will help learners in acquiring the correct
pronunciation of sounds. However, listening to these sounds is not
enough learners should consider practicing the sounds regularly (Boyer
& Boyer, 2002). This will enhance their pronunciation and communication
in the English language. Learners are supposed to identify the sounds
that they have a problem in pronouncing, and focus on improving one at a
time.
Methodology
Participants
In this study, the participants will be from the different parts of
Saudi Arabia. The participants must not have visited any English
speaking countries and they must not have received any English
instructions. The study will focus on those participants that have just
finished secondary school in Saudi Arabia being enrolled in a university
for a preparatory program. This will necessitate the ability of the
participant to fully comprehend their first language, which implies that
they are ready to learn English as their second language. From the
different parts of Saudi Arabia, the number of participants will be ten
in number.
Data Collection and Analysis
The ten participants picked randomly from the different areas of Saudi
Arabia will be required to pronounce different words selected from the
English language. The pronunciation given by the participants will be
recorded. Tape recorder will be used in recording the different
pronunciations given by the participants. After collecting information
regarding how different participants pronounce certain English words,
the recordings will be carefully analyzed in order to establish whether
the pronunciation is a common problem for Saudi learners acquiring
English as their second language.
Conclusion
In improving in any language, pronunciation is a key element this
implies that Saudi learners desiring to acquire and be proficient in
English have to understand the pronunciation of different sounds.
Pronunciation emerges as a common problem among Saudi learners acquiring
English as a second language due to the mother tongue influence (Altaha,
1995). The problem of pronunciation can be eliminated through listening
and practicing various sounds that a learner has a problem in
pronouncing a learner should first recognize the sounds he has a
problem in pronouncing and focus on improving one by one. Pronunciation
is crucial for Saudi learners acquiring English as a second language
because it helps in understanding how to write and write the language.
Proper pronunciation is also vital since it helps a learner in
expressing himself to others. In addition, the proper pronunciation of
English sounds is vital to learners since it helps in enhancing the
overall performance of a learner.
References
Altaha, F. (1995). Pronunciation errors made by Saudi university
students learning English: Analysis and remedy. International Review of
Applied Linguistics, 109, 110-123.
Binturki, T. A. (2008). Analysis of pronunciation errors of Saudi ESL
learners. Southern Illinois University, USA.
Boyer, S., & Boyer, L. (2002). Understanding English pronunciation: An
integrated practice course. Glenbrook, N.S.W: Boyer Educational
Resources.
Emad, M. A. (2010). Phonological Analysis of English Phonotactics: A
Case Study of Arab Learners of English. The Buckinghum Journal of
Language and Linguistics, V 3, 121 to 134.
Kharma, N. & Hajjaj, A. (1998). Errors in English among Arabic speakers:
Analysis and remedy. Longman: London.
Sharifian, F. (2009). English as an international language: Perspectives
and pedagogical issues. Bristol, UK: Multilingual Matters.
Soler, L. M. (2008). Teaching English at university level. Barcelona:
Edicions UPC.
Wahba, E. (1998). Teaching pronunciation-why? Language Teaching Forum,
V36, 3-32.
THE IMPORTANCE OF PRONUNCIATION AMONG SAUDI LEARNERS IN SECOND LANGUAGE
ACQUISITION AND THEIR PERFORMANCE PAGE * MERGEFORMAT 2
THE IMPORTANCE OF PRONUNCIATION AMONG SAUDI LEARNERS IN
SECOND LANGUAGE ACQUISITION AND THEIR PERFORMANCE

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