Pronunciation in EFL Instruction: A Research-Based Approach

Author: Jolanta Szpyra-Kozłowska

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In view of recent debates on the global spread of English and its international lingua franca role, what pronunciation models are appropriate for millions of EFL learners? Which aspects of English phonetics should be taught to foreign students and which can be neglected with little loss to successful communication? How can English pronunciation be taught in an interesting and effective way which is both learner- and teacher-friendly, in accordance with the latest scholarly and technological achievements? This research-based book addresses these and many other fundamental issues that are currently at the centre of pronunciation teaching. It offers a wealth of new theoretical ideas and practical solutions to various phonodidactic problems that arise in EFL contexts, approaching pronunciation instruction from global and local perspectives and supporting its theoretical claims with extensive empirical evidence. It will be of interest to EFL teachers and teacher trainers, pronunciation specialists and students of applied linguistics.

This publication considers a fundamental and practical issue: the teaching of the pronunciation of a foreign language, which is the major aspect of a language for learners at a time when English has become a Lingua Franca(...)There should be two possible groups of readers for this book: English teachers - particularly those with an enthusiasm for pronunciation instruction and phoneticians, postgraduate researchers, as well as students of English and ELF theoreticians who should not remain indifferent to the theoretical and thought-provoking insights it contains.

The Phonetician, Vol. 111/112, 2016

Szpyra-Kozlowska's book is an extremely valuable contribution to the ongoing discussion about how best to learn and teach English pronunciation. Her thorough research-based approach, combining quantitative and qualitative findings, has implications well beyond the Polish context and should be replicated with other EFL populations. Her determination to root the debate in "the empirical validation of theoretical claims" is laudable and undoubtedly will inspire high-quality work by others.

Journal of Second Language Pronunciation 1:2 (2015)

This is a well written study based on solid grounds of theoretical knowledge and practical experience, as well as reasonable attitudes to the major hotly debated issues concerning English pronunciation instruction in the global context. It will certainly be of great use to English teachers, phoneticians, as well as students of English. Its theoretical insights will be just as interesting and thought-provoking to ELF theoreticians.

GOVOR 31 (2014)

The implications drawn from this study are significant and, therefore, I highly recommend the book to anyone interested in glottodidactics. And it is a real "must have" for any enthusiast au fait with the area of EFL pronunciation.


Jolanta Szpyra-Kozłowska's Pronunciation in EFL Instruction: A Research-Based Approach offers a persuasive argument that English native accents are pragmatically the best models for pronunciation teaching. I found this book an essential resource for people with an enthusiasm for pronunciation instruction.

Arizio Sweeting, University of the Sunshine Coast, Australia, in Journal of Academic Language & Lear

Szpyra-Kozłowska gives strong and convincing arguments that a native-like pronunciation model is required in teaching English. Witty and challenging opinions include '…a perfect ELF teacher would be a non-native speaker who…was a failure as a student of English'. The book carries the debate about goals in teaching pronunciation to new levels and is highly recommended as a provocative collection of arguments.

Linda Shockey, University of Reading, UK

This book is full of interesting insights and wise advice. I heartily recommend it.

John Wells, Emeritus Professor, University College London, UK

If pronunciation is the Cinderella of ESL/EFL, here is a Fairy Godmother. This book presents a persuasive argument for the importance of pronunciation and an overview of recent debates about the choice of pronunciation model. The author proposes a compromise called Native English as Lingua Franca and a multi-modal approach to pronunciation instruction. The book is engagingly written and the arguments supported by sound empirical research.

Jolanta Szpyra-Kozłowska is Associate Professor of English Linguistics and Chair of the Phonetics and Phonology Unit in the Department of English at Maria Curie-Skłodowska University, Lublin, Poland. She has published extensively (7 books and over 100 papers) on English and Polish phonology, the phonology-morphology interaction, the acquisition of English phonetics and phonology by Poles, pronunciation pedagogy, foreign accent perception and gender linguistics.

From the Author 
1. English Pronunciation Teaching: Global versus Local Contexts 
2. Global and Local Pronunciation Priorities 
3. Pronunciation Inside and Outside the Classroom: A Holistic Multimodal Approach 
4. Concluding Remarks 

Postgraduate, Research / Professional
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