Consonant parameter drill
This drill allows you to practice identifying the parameters (e.g., active
articulator, degree of constriction) for the consonants of English.
Start it up (for the impatient)
click here to start.
Instructions (for the timid)
The screen will be divided into a number of parts:
In the lower part, you enter your decisions for the parameters using the
radio buttons (A). When you have made a choice
for every parameter, you can click on one of the buttons (B):
- "Check each" -- This will tell you whether you were right or wrong
for each parameter.
- "Check all" -- This will tell you whether you got everything right or
whether there was at least one mistake. No part marks here.
In the middle part of the screen, you will see both the consonant symbol
you are to describe (C) and the program's
feedback on your answers (D).
In the top part, you can choose which parameters you want to work on (E).
Further, for place of articulation, you can choose whether you want to
Try all three.
- use the single abbreviated terms, or
- describe the active and passive articulators separately, using
- the names of the articulators, or
- their adjective forms
The "Pick a sound" button (F) chooses a new
random sound for you to describe.
You might want to start small -- only working on passive articulators or
voicing, for example, and using "Check each" to tell you exactly where
your mistakes were. Eventually, you should get to the point where you can
get all the parameters right, using the all-or-nothing "Check all" button.
If you find any problems with the drill, please e-mail me.
- The drill makes some arbitrary choices for a few consonants. For
example, it will only accept apico-alveolar as the place of articulation
for [s], although some English speakers use a lamino-alveolar. Though [w]
consists of a simultaneous bilabial approximant and a dorso-velar
approximant, the drill arbitrarily treats it as just a bilabial approximant.
- In order for this to work, you'll need to make sure that you have
Enough with all the talking already, let's begin.