The effectiveness of embodied prosodic training in L2 accentedness and vowel accuracy

Peng Li*, Florence Baills, Lorraine Baqué, Pilar Prieto

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


This study explores the effects of embodied prosodic training on the production of non-native French front rounded vowels (i.e. /y, ø, œ/) and the overall pronunciation proficiency. Fifty-seven Catalan learners of French practiced pronunciation in one of two conditions: one group observed hand gestures embodying prosodic features of the sentences they were listening to, while the other group did not see any such gestures. The learning outcome was assessed in a pretest, posttest, and delayed posttest through a dialogue-reading task and a sentence imitation task in terms of accentedness, comprehensibility and fluency scores, and through formant analysis of participant-produced target vowels. The results showed that compared to non-embodied training, embodied prosodic training yielded continuous improvement in accentedness in both tasks and improved the F2 values of French front rounded vowels (more fronted). As for comprehensibility and fluency scores, both groups showed similar levels of significant improvement. This study highlights the interaction between prosodic and segmental features of speech by showing that training with embodied prosodic features benefitted accentedness and the production accuracy of non-native vowels.

Original languageEnglish
JournalSecond Language Research
Early online date1 Oct 2022
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 1 Oct 2022


  • accentedness
  • hand gestures
  • prosody
  • second language pronunciation
  • vowel


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