Podcasting Communities and Second Language Pronunciation


  • Gillian Lord

    1. (PhD, The Pennsylvania State University) is Assistant Professor of Spanish and Linguistics at the University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida.
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Abstract: Although often neglected in language classrooms, second language phonology is a crucial element in language learning because it is often the most salient feature in the speech of a foreigner. As instructors, we must decide how to emphasize pronunciation and what techniques to use. This article discusses a collaborative pod-casting project in an undergraduate Spanish phonetics class. Students worked in small groups to create and maintain their own podcast channel on which they uploaded recordings for group member feedback. Each recording focused on particular aspects of Spanish pronunciation, using tongue twisters, short readings, and personal reflection on students' own pronunciation. Both attitudes and pronunciation abilities were assessed before and after the project, and both were found to improve. The benefits of podcasting projects to improve language skills are discussed from an empirical as well as a pedagogical perspective.