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From: tom zurinskas (
Date: Thu Jul 18 2002 - 09:50:08 EDT

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Subject: [NIFL-ASSESSMENT:157] R&D in phonetic awareness
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For adult literacy, I think there is a real
opportunity in the ESL area with learners that are
literate to advance phonetic awareness methodology and
application.  With truespel (which has respelled
English in USA accent), the learner is exposed to an
intermediary English friendly phonetic spelling.  The
sound associations of the phoneme spellings can be
learned in a few minutes (only the vowels give
trouble).  Training would be done by an instructor in
learners 1st language.  Training "locks in" the
association between sound and spelling of 40 English
phonemes, which takes only an hour or two of practice.
 Nonsense words are used in practice, which are
language neutral and are balanced in presentation for
number of phonemes.  After an hour or two, these
already literate learners should be able to read aloud
truespeld English text with maximal USA accent.  They
won't know what it means, but the decoding part is
simplified.  They will also be able to encode/decode
their first language (given a few new phoneme
spellings) which will also enforce learning the basic
truespel phoneme set.  Access to truespel is no
problem.  It is available for free via the truespel
converter, which enables any teacher or learner to
easily convert English to truespel.  In the future
truespel will be an intermediary phonetic spelling
between all languages.  This is possible because I've
found that the 40 phoneme set of English makes up
about 95% of the phonemes of other most-popular
languages (for 13 investigated).

New research is presented below, enabled by the
truespel database.  I'll be glad to support any
research in this area.  A 1-hr CD is now available to 
learn truespel (15 min), practice (35 min), and test
yourself on your ability to hear phonemes (10 min). 
This is a new product and your support would be great.

Analysis of English in USA Accent Developing a
Truespel Leengwuprint
Tom Zurinskas 7/4/02

I've completed the analysis of the English phonemes as
appearing in the London Times (USA accent).  The
sample is made up of words appearing 100 times or
more, or 10,281 individual words out of a
16,324,176-word sample.  

Here is a list of all words over 1% of the top 10,281
words.  (The word “the” is far and away most popular.)
 The procedure consists of converting the words to
truespel, which is a phonetic spelling, separating the
phonemes associated with frequency, and tallying the
results per phoneme with % computed.  The second and
third appearances of phonemes in words make up 6.2% of
the total.  (There were no words with 4 appearances of
the same phoneme.)  Thus, if the London Times is
written as English is commonly spoken, then this is a
fair representation of the frequency of phonemes in
spoken USA English.

Word   Frequency   Percentage
the	1,081,654	6.63%
of	535,391	3.28%
and	511,333	3.13%
to	479,191	2.94%
a	419,798	2.57%
in	334,183	2.05%
that	215,322	1.32%
it	198,578	1.22%
i	197,055	1.21%
was	194,286	1.19%
is	166,691	1.02%
Total 16,324,176

The data below I call it a leengwuprint.  I display it
also in a graph, phonemes along the x axis and percent
utilization on the vertical axis.  Other languages are
compared to USA English visually this way with their
own leengwuprints.

Truespel Analysis of USA English phoneme usage
from words in the London Times Newspaper
total sample word count =	 16,324,276
total individual words = 10,281
total phonemes =	 62,053
avg. phonemes/word =	6.04
Vowels	neem	freq.	sample
v1	i	7.01%	in
v2	u	6.76%	up
v3	ee	4.46%	meet
v4	ie	3.97%	pie
v5	a	3.45%	ad
v6	e	2.48%	end
v7	er	2.34%	her
v8	ue	2.05%	blue
v9	aa	1.55%	baa
v10	ae	1.51%	sundae
v11	oe	1.19%	toe
v12	oo	1.04%	good
v13	or	0.68%	fork
v14	au	0.63%	auger
v15	ou	0.58%	out
v16	air	0.54%	fair
v17	oi	0.10%	oil
Cons.	neem	freq.	sample
k1	n	7.94%	nap
k2	t	7.06%	tap
k3	s	4.50%	sad
k4	d	4.47%	did
k5	l	3.84%	lip
k6	th	3.18%	that
k7	z	2.97%	zap
k8	k	2.95%	kid
k9	r	2.84%	ran
k10	m	2.76%	man
k11	w	2.41%	woe
k12	v	2.05%	vest
k13	p	1.98%	pad
k14	g	1.81%	gift
k15	b	1.78%	big
k16	f	1.73%	fig
k17	h	1.68%	hoe
k18	y	1.13%	yes
k19	sh	0.77%	sham
k20	thh	0.66%	thin
k21	ch	0.59%	chin
k22	j	0.51%	jig
k23	zh	0.05%	vision
all phonemes
	neem	freq.
1	n	7.94%
2	t	7.06%
3	i	7.01%
4	u	6.76%
5	s	4.50%
6	d	4.47%
7	ee	4.46%
8	ie	3.97%
9	l	3.84%
10	a	3.45%
11	th	3.18%
12	z	2.97%
13	k	2.95%
14	r	2.84%
15	m	2.76%
16	e	2.48%
17	w	2.41%
18	er	2.34%
19	v	2.05%
20	ue	2.05%
21	p	1.98%
22	g	1.81%
23	b	1.78%
24	f	1.73%
25	h	1.68%
26	aa	1.55%
27	ae	1.51%
28	oe	1.19%
29	y	1.13%
30	oo	1.04%
31	sh	0.77%
32	or	0.68%
33	thh	0.66%
34	au	0.63%
35	ch	0.59%
36	ou	0.58%
37	air	0.54%
38	j	0.51%
39	oi	0.10%
40	zh	0.05%

(Note "r" has verb and consonant forms)

Read all about truespel at  
Convert text to truespel USA accent by copy/pasting it at:

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