In the context of 90 adult Japanese learners of English with diverse second language experience and 10 native speakers, this study examined the linguistic characteristics and learner profiles of low-, mid-and high-level fluency performance. The participants' spontaneous speech samples were initially rated by 10 native listeners for global fluency on a 9-point scale (1 = dysfluent, 9 = very fluent), and then divided into four proficiency groups via cluster analyses: low (n = 29), mid (n = 30), high (n = 31), and native (n = 10). Next, the data set was analyzed for the number of pauses within/between clauses, articulation rate, and the frequency of repetitions/self-corrections. According to the results of a series of analyses of variance, the frequency of final-clause pauses differentiated low-and mid-level fluency performance; the number of mid-clause pauses differentiated mid-and high-level performance; and articulation rate differentiated high-level and nativelike performance. The analyses also found that the participants' second language fluency was significantly associated with their length of residence profiles (0-18 years), but not with their age of arrival profiles (19-40 years).
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