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The Multimodal Context of Phonological Learning

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This book fills a need in applied linguistics by providing a comprehensive view of the multimodal context in which speech is perceived, produced, taught, and learned. It is both authoritative and practical, combining research review and a pedagogical orientation presented by a researcher and teacher whose work in second language acquisition has centrally involved the wider context in which pronunciation is situated.

The book reviews the early foundation established by speechreading studies that explored the extraction of speech information from a talker’s facial movements and the interaction of auditory-visual cues in perceptual illusions. It then focuses on the role of auditory, visual, and tactile information in second-language perceptual learning and the interactional functions of eye gaze within the complex of nonverbal communication that incorporates head movements and manual gestures. The book also details an original mixed-methods study of the eye-gaze behavior of perceivers when viewing the face of a speaker producing their first language (English) and a speaker producing their second language (French) in different stimulus conditions.

The issue of variability in speech emerges as a central theme throughout the book and one which researchers and teachers are encouraged to exploit through their selection of multimodal materials and their approach to pronunciation teaching.

Published: Sep 1, 2026