The production of voice onset time (VOT) by English-speaking children in a Japanese immersion program

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This study analyzed the production of voice onset time (VOT) for /p, t, k/ in Japanese and English by English-speaking children (n 15) in a Japanese immersion program. The immersion children produced Japanese voiceless stops with significantly longer VOT values than the monolingual Japanese children and the immersion teachers, but they produced them with significantly shorter VOT values than their English VOT. This suggests that the immersion students are making a phonetic distinction in VOT between Japanese and English, though their VOT values are still intermediate, compared with the norms of the monolingual speakers and their immersion teachers. In other words, the immersion children implemented the VOT contrast differently from the model they were exposed to, that is, that of the Japanese English bilingual teachers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)353-378
Number of pages26
JournalIRAL - International Review of Applied Linguistics in Language Teaching
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2007 Dec 19


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language

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