Peer-Reviewed Journal Details
Mandatory Fields
Lee, A., Nyland, J., & Peppé, S.
Folia Phoniatrica Et Logopaedica
Irish English PEPS-C (2015 edition) and Learners of ESL
Optional Fields
prosody Irish English second language learning assessment
Introduction: Profiling Elements of Prosody in Speech-Communication (PEPS-C) is a computerised test for assessing the abilities to understand and use speech prosody in communication. It has been used to obtain a profile of strengths and weaknesses in different prosodic forms and functions for different clinical populations (e.g., autism spectrum disorders, Down syndrome) and second language learners. The 2015 edition of PEPS-C incorporates four new subtests addressing the understanding and production of lexical stress and phrasal stress, and collapses four form subtests (Intonation/Short-Item Input and Output, Prosody/Long-Item Input and Output) into two (Discrimination, Imitation). However, the suitability of these new tasks has not been reported in any published studies, although they are likely to be relevant for learners of English. Moreover, the present authors update the Irish English (IE) version of PEPS-C to the 2015 edition for another research project on prosodic skills in children with spina bifida. Hence, this paper reports the making of PEPS-C 2015 (IE) and examines the usefulness of this test in assessing a group of non-native speakers of English, as compared to a group of native speakers of IE. Methods: PEPS-C 2015 for Irish English was developed by adapting the test items of the UK English version of the test. The PEPS-C 2015 (IE) was then trialled on 25 native speakers of Irish English and 10 Spanish speakers who speak English as a second language (ESL). Results: All native speakers of Irish English showed competence (scored >= 75% correct) in the comprehension and expression of prosodic form and functions assessed. For the ESL speakers, the test identified two areas of possible difficulty for this group: Phrase Stress Comprehension and Expression, and Contrastive Stress Comprehension. Conclusion: The PEPS-C 2015, with its extra stress tasks, might therefore be useful as a prosody assessment tool for ESL speakers, particularly those with a Romance first language or at an early stage of learning, but further research is needed.
Grant Details
Health Research Board
HRB Summer Student Scholarships 2016, awarded to the 2nd author.