A Comparison of Urdu and Punjabi First language Interference on English as Second Language
Keywords:ELT, English, L1, Punjabi, Pedagogy, Urdu
This study examines errors in ESL students focusing on those who speak Urdu and Punjabi as their first languages. It uses Optimality Theory (OT) as a framework to explore the interaction between markedness and faithfulness constraints within OT. The study employs a mixed methods approach, including surveys and audio recordings from 30 participants (15 Urdu speakers and 15 Punjabi speakers). Three phonological factors are investigated; stress patterns, pronunciation of interdental /th/ and differentiation between bilabial /w/ and labiodental /v/. The data analysis, presented through bar graphs and interpreted using OT reveals nuanced patterns of errors. Notably Punjabi L1 speakers demonstrate a frequency of mistakes suggesting impact from their first language. This research significantly contributes to understanding the dynamics of language interference by shedding light on how phonological differences, among Urdu, Punjabi and English influence specific pronunciation errors. The findings hold educational ramifications for ESL teachers looking to upgrade language instructions custom-made to the phonological backgrounds of their students.
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