Phonology Acquisition in Nepal: A Preliminary Study
The process of speech and language development in children is an effortless and basic human skill. As the child acquires language, they acquire a sign system that bears an important relationship to both cognitive and social aspects of their life. Every language has its own phonological system so it is necessary to develop language-specific articulatory skill acquisition norms. The aim of the study was to delineate the phonology acquisition in typically developing Nepali-speaking children between the ages 3 and 7.
Forty children in 5 discrete groups as: 3.0-3.12 (mean= 3.4), 4.0-4.12 (mean= 4.4), 5.0-5.12 (mean= 5.5), 6.0-6.12 (mean= 6.4) years, each group consisting of 10 children was considered for the study. All the forty children were administered a picture articulation test in Nepali (PAT-N). The test consists of 79 colorful pictures, and analyses 6 vowels, 3 diphthongs, and 28 consonants in different positions: initial, medial, and final position. After the completion of recording, the recorded samples were transcribed in IPA after a few hours of recording on the same day and were analyzed
All the vowels and diphthongs included in the study were acquired before the age of 3 years old. Around 60% of consonants including in all the positions are developed by age 3.12. The result demonstrated that children acquire more speech and become more accurate as they get older. Speech-language pathologists/ therapists can use this study to assess the speech sound errors, link with intelligibility, and know about the actual breakdown in speech sound development.
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