Centre International de Formation et de Recherche en Approche Neurolinguistique et en Neuroéducation

Phonetic Correction (PHC)

In the last 50 years, research in phonology, phonetics, phonotactics, and other areas of language science bearing on aurality and pronunciation has yielded a wide range of descriptive knowledge which has inspired numerous strategies for phonetic correction in the language classroom. Recent advances in applying cognitive neuroscience in education now reveal which of these practices are effective, and when and why they should be used.

Great Effective Teaching Means

Despite this, though training curricula may mention elements of how the speech organs operate, or language-specific prosodic phenomena, or the existence of an international phonetic alphabet, concrete techniques for teaching accepted pronunciation or correcting faulty pronunciation are almost never included.

At the same time, while the perspective underlying many basic texts urges that language classes should aim for social integration, who is unaware of the difficulties non-native speakers face when their pronunciation of the L2/FL is insufficiently intelligible? During a job interview, for instance, even if they master the grammar of the language they want to use, and even if they are competent in their area of expertise, the employer asking them questions will systematically focus on their elocutionary approximations rather than on their professional qualifications.

Intelligibility therefore proves to be a necessary condition for enabling language exchange. The more time and effort interlocutors must expend on understanding what the other has said, the less time is available for meaningful exchanges. If the primary objective of teaching a second language is to achieve intelligible spoken language, awareness of this should be an ethical imperative for teachers and demanded by students (LeBel 2011).

Experienced Multilingual Trainers

This training, offered by Steeve Mercier (Ph.D.) and Olivier Massé (Master’s in SL Education), with the participation of Jean-Guy LeBel (Ph.D.), aligns with this perspective. Between them, these three multilingual specialists in teaching and phonetic correction represent some 80 years’ experience among diverse audiences (international students, economic migrants, refugees, persons facing challenges when it comes to speech and language). What, when, and how to teach? What, when, and how to correct target-language pronunciation? Following this five-day workshop, you will be able to answer these questions.

The teaching strategies put into practice during this workshop are the essential complement to the NLA workshops and will allow you to optimise the latter’s teaching strategies. 

cph1

PHC1 – Initial training 

for teaching pronunciation and to Great Means for correcting pronunciation when teaching an L2/FL

CPH2

PHC2 – Advanced training

to teaching pronunciation and to Great Means for correcting pronunciation when teaching an L2/FL

CPH3

PHC3 – Introductory workshop to evaluation tools

specific to L2/FL pronunciation

This training session introduces participants to the theoretical bases and practical experience of strategies for teaching and correcting the pronunciation of the language being learned, an indispensable element for ensuring accurate and fluent elocution that permits maximum communicative intelligibility.

In keeping with the workshop’s guiding thread of a neuroliteracy-based perspective, by the end of the training participants will have in hand decision-making criteria allowing them to: 1) diagnose their learners’ pronunciation difficulties; 2) choose which of the Great Means for phonetic correction will most effectively allow them to guide their learners to produce the expected L2/FL pronunciation; and 3) objectively note the results of their interventions.

By analysing the phonological and phonetic systems of the language being learned participants will come to identify the main pronunciation difficulties or mistakes and to diagnose their nature in order to determine the best correction techniques to remedy them. Participants will learn how knowledge derived from cognitive neuroscience serves as criteria for educational choices.

Nine Great Means for phonetic correction are taught during the workshop and participants will apply them with three groups of learners presenting with different difficulties (with different first languages, at different L2/FL levels, etc.), based on the participants’ teaching contexts.

Intended for second-language or foreign-language teachers, as well as for future teachers and education administrators. Strongly recommended to ANL practitioners.

This 50-hour course is divided into 30 in-class workshop hours and 20 hours of personal work (guided self-learning), 5 to be completed before the workshop and 15 after.

5 days

Day 1: Linguistic Contexts

• Feedback on classroom observations and the needs of teachers/trainers (e.g. mistakes at the level of phonemes of the phonotactics of complex syllables, and of prosody).

• Presentation of the main observations and analyses concerning speech perception and production in a second/foreign language.

• Terminological update (e.g. phonetic correction, phonetics vs. phonology, phonemes, phonotactics, prosody, fluency, accuracy, IPA, articulatory criteria).

• Presentation of the phonological and phonetic systems of the language being learned; comparisons with other languages (e.g. English, French, Spanish, Mandarin, Arab, Japanese).

• Reflections on the sociophonetic variations of the language being learned and the consequences for phonetic correction in a second/foreign language.

Day 2: Pedagogical interventions

• Review of terminology of the phonological and phonetic systems.

• Discussions on various commonly used techniques for teaching pronunciation.

• Presentation of advances in cognitive neuroscience suggesting explicit teaching strategies liable to correct faulty pronunciations.

• Presentation of advances in cognitive neuroscience suggesting implicit teaching strategies liable to correct faulty pronunciations.

• Presentation of LeBel, Mercier, and Massé’s Nine Great Means for Phonetic Correction (2016).

Day 3: Classroom practice, Learner Group 1

• Demonstrations of correcting pronunciation errors with L2/FL learners; case studies (videos).

• Demonstrations of correcting pronunciation errors with L2/FL learners; work with real learners (group 1).

• Under supervision, participants work with learners (group 1) in a learning situation; feedback.

• Correction of previously reported pronunciation errors.

• Discussions among participants regarding their choice of Great Means for optimal phonetic correction.

Day 4: Classroom practice, Learner Group 2

• Demonstrations of correcting pronunciation errors with L2/FL learners; video case studies.

• Demonstrations of correcting pronunciation errors with L2/FL learners; work with real learners (group 2).

• Under supervision, participants work with learners (group 2) in a learning situation; feedback.

• Correction of previously reported pronunciation errors.

• Discussions among participants regarding their choice of Great Means for optimal phonetic correction.

Day 5: Real classroom practice, Learner Group 3

• Demonstrations of correcting pronunciation errors with L2/FL learners; video case studies.

• Demonstrations of correcting pronunciation errors with L2/FL learners; work with real learners (group 3).

• Under supervision, participants work with learners (group 3) in a learning situation; feedback.

• Correction of previously reported pronunciation errors.

• Discussion among participants regarding their choice of Great Means for optimal phonetic correction.

This 50-hour training workshop leads to a PHC1 Certificate (Certified Phonetic Correction Practitioner).

Validation of this certificate is contingent on the participant demonstrating his or her implementation of the Great Means for Phonetic Correction in a classroom situation.

Intended for L2/FL teachers who have completed initial PHC1 phonetic correction training, this workshop aims to enrich phonetic and phonological knowledge, to reinforce the ability to diagnose pronunciation difficulties, to better choose and to master the Great Means in real situations, and at acquiring initial abilities at teacher training in this area. Particularly recommended for pedagogical coordinators, educational consultants, and educational administrators responsible for guiding teachers needing to implement phonetic correction in their classrooms.

By applying a reflective observational approach throughout the workshop, participants will reinforce their knowledge of phonological and phonetic theory, as well as the skills needed to implement the Nine Great Means for phonetic correction that are essential for any L2/FL teacher wishing to optimise their learners’ intelligibility. Participating teachers will also develop the professional attitudes needed to analyse teaching practices and to formulate effective personal feedback to assist colleagues beginning to use phonetic correction.

The Nine Great Means for phonetic correction reviewed during the workshop will be applied with three groups of learners presenting with different difficulties (with different first languages, at different L2/FL levels, etc.), depending on the participants’ contexts.

Intended for L2/FL teachers trained in the use of the Nine Great Means for phonetic correction who wish to enrich their on-the-ground skills and/or to transmit their know-how.

This 50-hour course is divided into 30 in-class workshop hours and 20 hours of personal work (guided self-learning), 5 to be completed before the workshop and 15 after.

5 days

Following a review of the Nine Great Means for phonetic correction (LeBel, Mercier, Massé, 2016) introduced in the PHC1 workshop, we will consider the main types of awkwardness observed among teachers wishing to correct their students’ pronunciation – the deadly sins of phonetic correction – as well as the main difficulties that most practitioners of phonetic correction will encounter. On this basis, participants will be placed in a real-life phonetic correction situation with a group of learners gathered for this purpose. Implementing the Great Means for phonetic correction will allow participants to present, justify, and analyse diagnoses of pronunciation difficulties, as well as how the Great Means for phonetic correction have been implemented in light of a constant search for the optimal modeling of a target language so that learners can be integrated in their social context.

Program

Day 1: The phonetic corrector’s required knowledge

• LeBel, Mercier, and Massé’s Nine Great Means for Phonetic Correction (2016).

• The deadly sins of phonetic correction: case studies and synthesis.

• Issues in formative teachers’ training.

• Linguistic, sociolinguistic, psychoeducational, and neurocognitive levels of educational choices.

• Difficulties encountered by practitioners applying the Nine Great Means for phonetic correction: analysis of participants’ reports, synthesis.

Day 2: Pedagogical interventions

• Work with real learners; correction of pronunciation mistakes among L2/FL learners (group 1).

• Analysis of diagnoses, choices, and practices by the participants.

• Analysis of participants’ feedback.

• Wrap-up of the first day of practical applications.

Day 3: Real classroom practice, Learner Group 2

• Work with real learners; correction of pronunciation mistakes among L2/FL learners (group 2).

• Analysis of diagnoses, choices, and practices by the participants.

• Analysis of participants’ feedback.

• Wrap-up of the second day of practice.

Day 4: Real classroom practice, Learner Group 3

• Work with real learners; correction of pronunciation mistakes among L2/FL learners (group 3).

• Analysis of diagnoses, choices, and practices by the participants.

• Analysis of participants’ feedback.

• Wrap-up of the third day of practice.

Day 5: Real classroom practice, Learner Group 4

• Work with real learners; correction of pronunciation mistakes among L2/FL learners (group 4).

• Analysis of diagnoses, choices, and practices by the participants.

• Analysis of participants’ feedback.

• Wrap-up of the fourth day of practice.

• Review of difficulties formulated at the beginning of the workshop and formulation of remedial solutions to be applied.

• Review of expected feedback and formulation of appropriate behaviours to assist teachers during training.

This 50-hour training workshop leads to a PHC2 Certificate (Certified Phonetic Correction Adviser).

Validation of this certificate is contingent on the participant, in a professional situation, demonstrating having successfully carried out the educational accompaniment of a teacher wishing to implement phonetic correction in the classroom, and having successfully analysed the situation.

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