Accents and Second Language Acquisition: Comprehension and Intelligibility of Accented French
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The following study assesses the correlation between accent and perceived comprehension and intelligibility. Native speakers of French performed two judgment tasks and a transcription task on non-native French learners’ recordings to determine if there is a relationship between accent and comprehension or intelligibility. The study found that though there was a correlation between accent and perceived comprehension, there was not any substantial relationship between accent and intelligibility, or actual comprehension. The results of this study can help teachers of French as a foreign language set realistic goals for students that result in intelligibility rather than becoming native-like. The findings of this study can also help alleviate some of the social stigma that surrounds accents and comprehension.