Charles B. Chang colloquium: ‘Phonological learning in multilingual contexts’

Friday January 15, 2021
3:30 PM - 5:00 PM

Charles B. Chang (Boston University) will present a colloquium titled ‘Phonological learning in multilingual contexts’.

Click to join Zoom meeting. The passcode is 635410. (The meeting ID is 647 6334 5823.)

Phonological learning in multilingual contexts

This talk will report on recent and ongoing work examining aspects of phonological learning in the context of multilingualism. First, I’ll describe a line of research examining the role of acquisition order and phonetic similarity in influencing language transfer during third language (L3) perceptual learning. The results of this research show a facilitative effect of prior tonal experience, whether from one’s first-learned language (L1) or second-learned language (L2), in L3 tone perception, but also a larger effect of L1 tonal experience; furthermore, although the findings show no effect of typological similarity, they do show significant effects of crosslinguistic perceptual similarity and within-language acoustic similarity between different L3 tones. Second, I’ll outline an ongoing line of research examining the role of typological similarity among L1, L2, and L3 in regressive language transfer, focusing on the case of speech rhythm. I will discuss the implications of this work for theoretical models of later language acquisition and nonnative speech, arguing that studies of elaborated language contact are crucial to a general understanding of the language faculty.