Results 1 to 5 of 5
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    53
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Standard Scottish English (SSE)

    Browsing through the forums, I get the impression that the prevalent idea (especially among native speakers) regarding pronunciation is that it doesn't matter too much as long as meaning can be put across effectively. However, there have been studies showing that, all other things being equal, the accent of a speaker has an impact on many of the assumptions the listener makes about the speaker. I mean that pronunciation and dialect carry meaning in themselves.
    I was taught English with RP as a model. I remember my teacher insisting that we make the 'o' in 'going' clearly diphthongal. She herself, however, had a rhotic accent. Rhoticity is clearly not RP, then why insist on a different feature of RP (diphthongal realization of 'o' in 'going') when many other equally acceptable accents (Standard Scottish English, for example) don't have it?
    On to my question, Standard Scottish English (SSE) is mentioned sometimes in the literature as being highly regarded all over the British Isles. Its phonetic structure is simpler than those of RP or General American. Do you think it could be a better model for students of ESL?

  2. #2
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • Philippines
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Posts
    42,543
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Sse

    Many are working towards something, which may seem a bit devil-may-care, but underneath there are some principles that I think are worthwhile. The notion of the core sounds, which are the ones that are essential for comprehension, which have been codified, though there will always be debate about some of the sounds, makes sense as we move into a world where the native speaker has less importance and that communication between non-natives already accounts for a huge majority of communication, and this will only increase. For many non-nativespeakers the choice isn't really the variety of native speech they aspire to, but quite simply being understood at all, especially by someone from a different language background with a different set of pronuncation issues. If SSE is simpler and could be more widely recognised, then there is no logical reason why it shouldn't be used, though the general conservatism of the ESLpublishers will ensure that nothing rocks their boat. However, many believe that students need exposure to wider samples and not a focus on a model. ELT is very much in flux at the moment, and absorbing the impact of the explosion in places like China

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    53
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Sse

    I agree that exposure to all native and non-native pronunciations is important, but I still adhere to the principle that a model is important. A coherent model, rather than a chaotic assembly of different rules from different accents, may help the learner build confidence and get a better grasp and command of the phonotactic rules of the language. For example, without a clear model, the learner might be confused as to whether the 'r' is pronounced or not in a certain word, or if it is ok to 'tap' the 't' in a certain environment. They may not be aware of these matters, but they get in the way nonetheless.

  4. #4
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • Philippines
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Posts
    42,543
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Sse

    The idea is to assemble a coherent body, though a different one. With your example of rhoticity, I think that will depend much on the part of the world- in Asia, where I'm living, American English is the dominant form, but in Europe, British English is more widely used, so learners will tend to be exposed to different models. This might ultimately add another element of difference, though I feel the rise of international English will lead by necessity to a greater harmonisation of pronunciation. An example would be the call centres in India, where they have found that speaking the language didn't necessarily mean being able to speak it internationally. I see your point about a model, but, as with so much in ESL, there is no industry-wide standard, and I'm not sure that I see one coming.
    Last edited by Tdol; 12-May-2011 at 20:57. Reason: typo

  5. #5
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • Philippines
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Posts
    42,543
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Sse

    Re-opening

Similar Threads

  1. Help
    By zhangjin in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 22
    Last Post: 29-Mar-2008, 19:47
  2. Is it right?
    By Genrikh in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 03-Dec-2005, 15:59
  3. Teaching of Standard English in Primary and Secondary
    By BGC_STUDENT in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 07-Jun-2004, 17:19

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Hotchalk