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JTCLT Abstract

Volume 6 Number 1, 2015
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Da, J. (2015). The Application of Speech Recognition Technology in Chinese Language Learning: What Can Be Learned From a Pinyin Lab Session. Journal of Technology and Chinese Language Teaching, 6(1), 16-24.

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This paper reports the findings from a language lab session where speech recognition technology was used to give students practice opportunities in Chinese Pinyin pronunciation. Our limited observations suggest that current Chinese ASR technologies, as exemplified by Google's Web Speech API, can provide opportunities for students to engage in meaningful pronunciation practices. This is demonstrated by students' more willingness to practice, and relaxed reactions to both the expected and unexpected feedbacks from the Google speech engine. Though we do not have sufficient data to demonstrate the effectiveness of current speech technologies in improving second language acquisition, our observations do indicate that it helps to lead to some good learner behaviors in language learning, which are acknowledged to be good indicators of better language acquisition. Our observations also suggest that when designing Pinyin activities it is better for instructors to provide students with meaningful and frequently used prompts rather than isolated syllables groups or low-frequency expressions.

本文通过对一次汉语拼音课堂练习活动的观察初步探讨了借 助语音识别技术进行拼音练习的三个基础问题。我们观察到目前的中 文语音识别技术,比如像 Google 公司的语音识别引擎,可以给学生 提供有意义的练习机会。这表现在 Google 语音引擎识别常用且有意 义的言语时准确率更高,不能正确识别时给出的(出乎意料的)反馈 让学生们觉得有趣,降低了他们的学习焦虑,学习变得更主动。虽然 本研究有限的观察数据并不能充分证明语音识别技术对二语习得的益 处,但我们至少观察到了学生学习行为的一些积极改变,这些改变是 有助于二语习得的。我们的观察还表明在借助语音识别技术帮助学生 进行拼音练习时最好使用(接近)真实的言语提示,避免使用无语义 的音节组合或在真实生活中使用频率低的言语表达。

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