10 English Pronunciation Errors by Japanese speakers
If your mother tongue is Japanese, you may find certain sounds in English more difficult than others. Here we present to you some of the common errors made by Japanese-speaking students at Pronunciation Studio:
1. /l/ or /r/
Japanese speakers often confuse the lateral alveolar approximant /l/ with the alveolar approximant /r/. In the sound /l/, the tip of the tongue touches behind the top teeth, whereas in /r/ the tongue doesn’t touch anywhere:
Roy left the rice in the red trolley.
2. Schwa /ə/
There is no neutral vowel in Japanese, whereas in English we use the neutral schwa in many unstressed syllables:
Can the prince come today for a chat.
3. ‘th’ Fricatives – /θ,ð/
Fricatives articulated in the front of the mouth are very difficult for Japanese speakers, most noticeably the two ‘th’ sounds: /θ/ and /ð/ which should not be replaced by either dental /t/ & /d/ or alveolar /s/ & /z/:
I think the theatre was more than thrilling.
4. 12 Vowel Positions
Japanese contains 5 vowel positions – /a, e i, o u/, English contains 11: /i ɪ e æ ɜ ʌ ɑ u ʊ ɔ ɒ/. Japanese speakers should try to use the full range of vowels in their English:
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