Accuracy-latency association in discrimination of L2 vowel contrasts

Yizhou Wang, Rikke L. Bundgaard-Nielsen, Brett J. Baker, Olga Maxwell

Friday, December 16th, 2022, 1.45pm – 2.15pm


This study investigates the efficacy of using response time-based metrics for assessing difficulty levels in L2 vowel discrimination. L1 Mandarin listeners discriminated six Australian English vowel contrasts with different cross-linguistic phonological statuses (cross-boundary vs within-category, according to PAM). Results suggest that latency metrics, similarly to accuracy measures, can indicate the level of difficulty in AXB discrimination. Results also show that the correlation between accuracy and latency metrics is conditioned by the phonological status of the L2 vowel contrasts being tested. Strong accuracy-latency associations exist in cross-boundary contrasts, but no clear correlations are found for within-category pairs.