oa Marang : Journal of Language and Literature - The applications of phonemic contrasts and their implications for oral english teaching in Nigeria

Volume 18, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1816-7659



This paper focuses on the applications of phonemic contrasts in the utterances of forty final-year Yoruba-English bilingual University undergraduates and the implications of their applications on pedagogic practices especially in English as a second language (ESL) environment. This subject is rarely studied in Nigeria, yet, it might be significant for shaping the effective teaching of oral English. The respondents, twenty of whom were students of English and the other twenty, students of Yoruba, were tested based on the framework of traditional phonemic theory. The results indicated that only 40% of the students studying Yoruba Linguistics were able to apply phonemic contrasts in the rendition of English words whereas 60% of the students undertaking English Studies did. The study establishes application or otherwise of phonological rules as a vital dimension of investigating phonological variationn and proficiencies in ESL and suggests the need to pay more attention to the area in ESL teaching and learning operations, especially for students in other disciplines.

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