BAProsodic Features of English

Credit points: 3
Contact hours: 30
Type: Lectures

Main Instructor

Smiljana Komar, PhD


Smiljana Komar, PhD

Course Description

Aims and Specific Competences:

  • Understanding features of English connected speech.
  • Understanding of the various functions of sentence intonation in English, also in comparison with Slovene.
  • Ability to analyse speech in terms of tonality (division into intonation phrases), tonicity (position of the nucleus) and tone (pitch level and pitch direction).
  • Ability to convert written and spoken material into phonemic transcription.


  • Students become acquainted with the prosodic features of the English language.
  • A detailed analysis of word stress (primary and secondary stress, stress in compounds) is followed by an overview of prosodic features in connected speech (assimilation, elision, weak forms of function words, rhythm, sentence stress,).
  • Various models of English sentence intonation are explained, followed by a detailed description of the division of speech in intonation phrases, the structure of the intonation phrase, the position of the nuclear syllable and the functions of nuclear tones.
  • Due to the nature of the subject matter, there is a strong focus on students' active work, in order for them to acquire appropriate accentuation and intonation, as well as to attain fluent loud speaking and reading.
  • Active work on phonemic  and phonetic transcription is continued, paying special attention to the features of connected speech. 

Course Literature:

  • Lecumberri, M. L. G., and J. A. Maidment. 2000. English Transcription Course. London: Arnold. Str.: 160.
  • O'Connor, J. D., G. F. Arnold. 1973. Intonation of colloquial English, Longman Group Ltd., Bristol, U.K.
  • Wells, J.C. 2006. English Intonation. Cambridge: CUP. Str.: 276.
  • Wells, J.C., 2008, Longman Pronunciation Dictionary, 3. izd., Harlow: Longman.


One written test during the semester (10%) and the final written (60%) and oral exam (30%). 

Due to the course structure (active class participation) the student can sit the tests only once. 

Grading scale of 6-10 (pass) and 1-5 (fail), in accordance with the Statutes of the University of Ljubljana and with the examination system of the Faculty of Arts.