International Phonetic Association
Certificate Examination in English Phonetics

London, 17 June 1998

Answer ALL questions. All four questions are equally weighted.

  1. Using a standard set of symbols for Received Pronunciation (or, if you prefer, of some other accent that you specify), make a phonemic transcription of the following passage, in an informal colloquial style. Indicate rhythmically stressed syllables, but NOT intonation.
    - How've you been keeping recently?
    - Oh, mustn't grumble. What about you?
    - Not too bad, really. I wish the weather would clear up, though. It seems to have been raining non-stop for days.
    - Well if it wasn't raining we'd probably all be complaining about the drought. I can't think why the English are such keen gardeners - it's always either too wet to mow the lawn, or so dry that there's a hosepipe ban and you're not allowed to water the flowers.
    - I do find the garden a burden these days.
    - You ought to pay someone to do it, then. If you let it get too untidy, the neighbours'll start complaining.

  2. Describe in detail, with appropriate diagrams, the movements made by the organs of speech in pronouncing the word sprinkler.

  3. EITHER (a) English /t/ is usually classified as a voiceless alveolar plosive. How adequate is this classification?

    OR (b) What is a diphthong? How can English diphthongs be classified? Is it helpful also to recognise a set of triphthongs?

  4. EITHER (a) Supply an appropriate intonation pattern for the sentence You ought to pay someone to do it, then in the dialogue above. Explain what determines the choice of pattern you have described.

    OR (b) What is the difference between primary and secondary articulation? Exemplify by discussing some of the secondary articulations found in English.


    Examiners: P.J. Roach, J.C.Wells

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