Before you start, make sure you have downloaded and familiarized yourselves with the Praat software (see Working in Praat).
You will receive your recording (.wav file) by email within two weeks from the recording session, as well as the TextGrid (.TextGrid file). You can open the sound and TG in Praat.
Please do not make any changes to the sound file – you only open it, never save it. You will only be changing, saving and sending to us the TG. Do not rename any of the files (specifically, do not add things like „final“, „evaluated“, „really-final“ or anything else to the file name, nor to the extension).
The automatic aligner which marks the boundaries of words and segments works with the original text. It may thus occasionally make mistakes which must be corrected manually. Therefore, before doing any other work, go through your files and see whether there are any “problems”.
In addition, the alignment and subsequent post-processing may lead to faulty phonemes transcribed in some words; if these include some of the target sounds for analysis, please correct them.
Once you’ve prepared the TG, you can start working on the analysis. First, create a new point tier which will be called “evaluation”. To do this, click on Tier – Add point tier… in the Editor window. In the dialogue window which pops up, enter “2” for Position, and “evaluation” for Name. That’s it. Don’t forget to save the modified TG.
You will be evaluating three kinds of speech sounds:
For each evaluated sound, insert a point into the evaluation tier by clicking into the little circle at the top of the tier (or as described on the Working in Praat page). Then specify your evaluation in the newly created point.
The vowels and the three consonants will be evaluated on the following scale:
You will handle aspiration differently. Instead of evaluating the correctness of your pronunciation, you simply mark the presence or absence of aspiration in your pronunciation (“Y” equals presence, “N” equals absence of aspiration in the given sound).
An example sound and TG can be downloaded here (all phenomena are marked in the initial portion of this file).
The course of work is up to you, but we strongly recommend that you follow the rough guidelines below, and/or our announcements in classes.
NOTE: If you pronounce a completely different sound, don’t evaluate it! Especially in altered or otherwise modified words.
Listening assignment guideline (winter semester):
Week 4: do the preparation stage (see above)
Week 5: start evaluating your /e/ and /æ/ vowels
Week 6: start evaluating the other two vowels; all vowels are checked in the first Progress Check
Week 8: start marking aspiration
Week 9: evaluate your dental fricatives
Week 10: evaluate your velar nasal sound
You will work with the same recording and TextGrid, as well as with the recording of spontaneous speech.
First of all, delete the evaluation tier from the winter semester. Then you will need to create two new point tiers, one for linking analysis (as the first tier) and one for the analysis of weak forms (between the phone and word tiers). To do this, click on Tier – Add point tier… in the Editor window.
You will be evaluating two connected-speech phenomena:
See an example sound and TG here to make sure you’re doing the task correctly.