Aspects of the prosodic systems used by a small group of New Zealand European children aged seven and eight.
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameMaster of Arts
This study describes aspects of the prosodic systems of intonation used by a small group of children. Twenty European children, ten boys and ten girls aged seven and eight in interview with an adult were used in the present study for prosodic analysis. The data were transcribed according to current methodology and the results were analysed using computer. In a series of crosstabulations the variables sex and age were held constant against the variables nuclear tone type, tone unit length, head length and presence, presence of the prehead, presence of the tail, pause length and pause position vis-a-vis the tone unit. Analysis revealed several statistically significant differences between nuclear tone type and sex, nuclear tone type and tone unit length, nuclear tone type and presence of the tail, nuclear tone type and pause length and position, nuclear tone type and presence of the prehead, presence of the prehead and sex, tone unit length and sex, and pause length and position and sex. Descriptive information on each variable is also presented. An interpretation of the results is offered and limitations and implications of the present investigation are discussed.