Thanks, Mark.
You are right. It's not so easy for the Chinese
students to get access to internet in the
universities. That's why I'll have to find all the
necessary materials for the program. I'll use it in
our university's intranet and as an auxiliary way to
my English course. But I'll try to do it in a way that
the students can follow it themselves without too much
help from my part.
Thanks again for your advice.

--- Mark Odegard <markodegard@...> wrote:
> --
> I'm writing my MA thesis which is
> to create a program through internet/intranet to
> help
> students like those I taught to improve their
> pronunciation. I'm trying to find a possible and
> practical way or method.
> --
> My first advice to E2L students is to direct them to
> the online sound
> files. Encarta, AHD4 and the University of
> Pennsylvania have such
> sound files:
> Encarta and AHD have very slick, very professional
> voices, while
> U.Penn is closer to English as she is spoke (i.e.,
> their speaker is
> consistently inconsistent, as normal 'General
> American' is; compare
> wok and walk), whereas the other two can be called
> 'citation English',
> i.e., the kind of English only a trained voice can
> manage.
> These only do individual words, unfortunately. This,
> of course, gives
> no information on how English modifies pronunciation
> in word clusters,
> but it is **considerably** better than nothing.
> Of course, the student has to be carefully
> instructed and often,
> *shown* how to make certain sounds.
> True story. Twice in my life, I've explained to a
> fluent non-native
> speaker exactly how the English th-sound (edh,
> thorn) is made: they
> had never had this explained to them (it did take a
> bit of
> demonstration), but can be stated as 'make an F by
> flicking your
> tongue against your upper teeth' (and yes, certain
> dialects of English
> do seem to confuse certain occurances of /th/ with
> /f/).
> The usual American English values of L and R, of
> course, are much much
> harder to explain, and this is where much of the
> problem occurs. In
> fact, I am unable to explain exactly what I do when
> I make my Rs. The
> phoneticians themselves (as I think Piotr will
> agree) have never been
> able to write a plain paragraph on the topic that
> any native-speaker
> of English untrained in phonology would immediately
> understand.
> With China, the biggest problem is the 'Great
> FireWall of China',
> where everything is censored by very poorly educated
> apparatchiks.

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