AN ANALYSIS OF THE INTONATION PATTERNS OF IF-CLAUSES IN TURKISH ENGLISH MAJORS
TOPAL, İBRAHİM HALİL
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The present study primarily aims at investigating the level of competence of pre-service Turkish teachers of English in the perception and employment of intonation patterns of If-clauses in English. It further aims at remediating any occurrences of intonational errors in their speech through remedial training sessions which utilize Audio Articulation Method (Demirezen, 2003, 2004) and Grammar Intonation Model (Cauldwell & Hewings, 1996; Hahn, 2004) and encompass a wide range of exercises about the recognition and employment of primary stress phoneme, pitch patterns and juncture phonemes of If-clauses both auditorily and visually. The study was conducted at the Department of English Language Teaching (ELT) of a state university in Turkey, with the participation of prospective English as a Foreign Language (EFL) teachers (N=61) and data were gathered in the spring term of 2015-2016 academic year. A pre-test/post-test experimental design was utilized to reach the goals of this study and the participants therefore were given both written and oral pre-tests and post-tests. The participants were given the pre-test to assess their level of competence in the perception of intonation patterns of If-clauses in English while the latter was given for finding out whether the participants could employ the accurate intonation patterns of If-clauses in English. For the written pre-test, the participants were given a test of 36 multiple-choice questions as the primary means of instrument for data collection, the reliability of which was maintained with a score of 0.81 utilizing Cronbach’s alpha statistical analysis while for the oral pre-test, the participants were given a corpus of 36 sentences, the reliability of which was sustained with a score of 0.81 utilizing Kuder-Richardson Formula 20 (KR-20). In the written pre-test, the participants were expected to recognize the intonation patterns of If-clauses through 36 multiple-choice questions while for the oral pre-test they were asked to record their voices in an insulated and stress-free environment during the articulation of 36 sentences in the corpus. The participants were then subject to treatment classes during which they practiced the recognition and employment of primary stress, pitch patterns and juncture phonemes of If-clauses utilizing various kinds of audio-visual exercises. Within two weeks following the remedial training sessions, the participants were given both written and oral post-tests which were administered in the same manner as in both pre-tests. The collection of recordings from the participants occurred through e-mail and the evaluation of the recordings were realized by three different human raters, one of whom is the researcher, in the form of a dichotomous scale. The inter-rater reliability was calculated by IBM SPSS version 22 and established with the score of over 0.90 intraclass correlation coefficient. In order to find out whether there was a statistically significant difference between the pre-test and post-test scores of the participants, Paired-Samples T-test was conducted. It was discovered that there was a major improvement in the competence of the participants in terms of perceiving the primary stress, pitch patterns and juncture phonemes and employing the primary stress and juncture phonemes of If- clauses. It was further discovered that remedial training sessions were proved to be effective regarding the amelioration of the participants’ intonational problems.