Saturday, October 1, 2011

The "I" in Haptic-integrated Clinical Pronunciation Teaching

Clip art: Clker
We use "integrated" in at least two distinct senses. The first, the "gold standard" today in the field, is the curricular strategy of "simply" busting up the pronunciation class and then inserting its parts throughout the program and, ideally, merging the techniques with other skill-based procedures. (See the earlier post on the subject, linked to Grant & Levis, 2004.) Here is a brief article by Steed at the University of Sidney describing a possible/typical approach to integrating pronunciation activities and techniques into speaking instruction (including the standard questionnaire-based check with students to see if they feel like it "works.")

The other sense of the term integrated--what makes the HICP perspective unique--is the requirement for extensive haptic anchoring (using movement and touch along with speech and management of the visual field); and thus potentially much more effective encoding (integration, so to speak) and recall of new and changed sounds, words and processes. Note: The only other use of the term "haptic anchor" currently appears to be in cutting edge eye surgery. How appropriate that haptic anchors be "in the eye of the beholder" as well as the body!

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