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The Importance of Pronunciation

Language is primarily a means of

communication. Good pronunciation skill is very important in learning any language. Learners with good English pronunciation are likely to be understood even if they make errors in other areas such as in grammar or vocabulary. On the other hand, Learners with bad pronunciation will not be understood, even if their grammar is perfect.

We judge people by the way they speak, and

so learners with poor pronunciation may be judged as incompetent, uneducated or lacking in knowledge. Yet, many learners find pronunciation one of the most difficult aspects of English to acquire

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. What is pronunciation? Why is pronunciation difficult? Features of pronunciation Why is pronunciation so important? How to improve learners pronunciation?

1-What is pronunciation ?
Pronunciation refers to the production of sounds which are used to make meaning. Pronunciation involves : A. sounds of the language (segments), B. Aspects of speech such as intonation (suprasegmental aspects), C. Voice quality D. Gestures and expressions closely related to the way we speak a language.
(Gilakjani, A. P. (2012, April 1). The Significance of Pronunciation in English Language Teaching. English Language Teaching. Retrieved December 17, 2013, from

2-Why is English pronunciation difficult?

1. Some sounds in English do not exist in the native language (diphthongs) . 2. The absence of direct relationship between spelling and pronunciation. 3. English is a stress-timed language. 4. Specific features of pronunciation.

3-Features of Pronunciation

A. Sounds:
26 English letters vs. 44 sounds The number of sounds in a word is not always the same as the number of letters Cat (3 letters) : /kt/ (3 sounds) Catch (5 letters) : /kt/ (3 sounds)
Pronunciation Tips. BBC Learning English. Retrieved December 16, 2013, from

Voiceless sounds

No vibration e.g. /f/ Vibration

B. voicing
Voiced sounds e.g. /v/

C. Intonation:
The rising and falling pitch in a persons voice

What is the difference in the way the

following two sentences sound? A. You are going tomorrow. B. You are going tomorrow?

D. Connected Speech
Spoken language in continuous sequence as in normal utterances and conversations. (Crystal, 2008). When linguistic units are used in normal speech they are changed in some way. This change can take place by any of the aspects of connected speech.

Examples are:
Assimilation as in : /ju:zd/ (used) /ju:st tu/ (used to) Elision as in: stopped for /d/ is elided Linking as in: turn off: /trn/ / f / tur nof : /tr / /nf/

4- Why is pronunciation so important?

A basis for efficient communication in English. For being understood by the listener For feeling more self-confident For better listening comprehension For better understanding of native speakers. on the contrary
Poor pronunciation

unpleasant impression on the listener. avoid speaking in English social isolation, employment difficulties and limited opportunities for further study.

5- How to improve learners pronunciation?

1- Imitation

2- Explanation
* Speech organs

* Biological process of articulation

3- Practice

Practice using the sound or the sound pattern in:

o Poetry o Songs o Tongue twisters


Having good pronunciation does not necessarily mean speaking like a native speaker.