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LINGUIST 4LB3 AdvPhonetics,Phonology&Morph

Academic Year: Winter 2017

Term: Fall

Day/Evening: D

Instructor: Prof. Daniel Pape


Office: Togo Salmon Hall 511

Phone: 905-525-9140 x 23761

Office Hours: Wednesday 3p.m. - 4 p.m.

Course Objectives:

This course is an advanced course whose aim is to ensure that students are familiar with advanced topics in phonetics and phonology. Basic knowledge in the area of phonetics will be refreshed and included whenever necessary and possible. The course will work with material taken from several languages, with a clear data-driven focus on topics in phonetics/phonology. A number of practical sessions aim to ensure that students are familiar and comfortable with phonetic speech analysis software.

By the end of the course, students will be able to:

  • Have a better understanding of advanced topics in phonetics and phonology, including diverse phonetic areas as articulatory phonetics, forensics, speech perception, neurophonetics and multimodal perception.
  • Be able to conduct simple data analysis in phonetics software like speech signal analysis, speech signal synthesis and articulatory synthesis
  • Have a thorough understanding of the interdisciplinary areas in phonetics, including forensic phonetics, speech perception and brain imaging, speech acoustics, suprasegmentals and multimodal speech.
  • Present an unfamiliar phonetic/phonology area to their fellow students as a presentation based on tutorial and handbook papers.
  • Be able to write a précis (short summary) of the presented tutorial/handbook paper.

The structure of the course will be a block of three 50 minutes lectures/sessions.

Objectives will be met by a mix of lectures (from the instructor, 3 weeks), practical work with phonetics software (PRAAT, 3 weeks) and student presentations (6 weeks, 12 topics) plus short summaries of these presentations.

Textbooks, Materials & Fees:

There is no textbook used in this course, instead tutorial papers and research papers are used.

Method of Assessment:

The final grade is a weighted average of these grades:

  • One student presentation plus a written précis (200 words) of this topic is weighted 40% of the final grade (presentation 25%, précis 15%). The topics for the student presentations are given in the syllabus (week 7 to 12) and will be assigned in the first class. Students will work in pairs (mostly 2 students per topic) to present their chosen topic.
  • Three practical exercises (week 4, 5, 6) weighted 45% (each exercise is worth 15%) where the methods and necessary steps are taught in the class and then the assignments can be finished in class or home. The assignments then have to be handed in to the instructor in the following week.
  • The continuous presence in class is weighted 15%. Presence in 10 classes (out of 12 classes) is considered 10% and adjusted accordingly with each missed class.

Individual percentages of each task completion are carried into the weighting procedure. The final grade is then the weighted equivalent percentages of each task completion.

Policy on Missed Work, Extensions, and Late Penalties:

Late assignments and exercises: Assignments submitted within 72 hours of the due date are penalized 10% of the value of the assignment. Being late more than 72 hours on an assignment results in a grade of zero for that assignment. If you submit an MSAF or other approved document (via the office of the Dean of your Faculty), contact Dr. Pape to arrange an alternate due date.

Missed exercises/presentations/précis: Missed practical exercises/presentations/précis for which the instructor receives an MSAF or other approved document have their value added to the value of the other exercises/presentation/ précis if not arranged otherwise with Dr. Pape.

Please Note the Following Policies and Statements:

Academic Dishonesty

You are expected to exhibit honesty and use ethical behaviour in all aspects of the learning process. Academic credentials you earn are rooted in principles of honesty and academic integrity.

Academic dishonesty is to knowingly act or fail to act in a way that results or could result in unearned academic credit or advantage. This behaviour can result in serious consequences, e.g. the grade of zero on an assignment, loss of credit with a notation on the transcript (notation reads: "Grade of F assigned for academic dishonesty"), and/or suspension or expulsion from the university.

It is your responsibility to understand what constitutes academic dishonesty. For information on the various types of academic dishonesty please refer to the Academic Integrity Policy, located at

The following illustrates only three forms of academic dishonesty:

  1. Plagiarism, e.g. the submission of work that is not one’s own or for which other credit has been obtained.
  2. Improper collaboration in group work.
  3. Copying or using unauthorized aids in tests and examinations.

Email correspondence policy

It is the policy of the Faculty of Humanities that all email communication sent from students to instructors (including TAs), and from students to staff, must originate from each student’s own McMaster University email account. This policy protects confidentiality and confirms the identity of the student.  Instructors will delete emails that do not originate from a McMaster email account.

Modification of course outlines

The University reserves the right to change dates and/or deadlines etc. for any or all courses in the case of an emergency situation or labour disruption or civil unrest/disobedience, etc. If a modification becomes necessary, reasonable notice and communication with the students will be given with an explanation and the opportunity to comment on changes. Any significant changes should be made in consultation with the Department Chair.

McMaster Student Absence Form (MSAF)

In the event of an absence for medical or other reasons, students should review and follow the Academic Regulation in the Undergraduate Calendar Requests for Relief for Missed Academic Term Work. Please note these regulations have changed beginning Fall 2015. You can find information at If you have any questions about the MSAF, please contact your Associate Dean's office.

Academic Accommodation of Students with Disabilities

Students who require academic accommodation must contact Student Accessibility Services (SAS) to make arrangements with a Program Coordinator. Academic accommodations must be arranged for each term of study. Student Accessibility Services can be contacted by phone 905-525-9140 ext. 28652 or e-mail For further information, consult McMaster University's Policy for Academic Accommodation of Students with Disabilities.

Academic Accommodation for Religious, Indigenous and Spiritual Observances

Students requiring academic accommodation based on religion and spiritual observances should follow the procedures set out in the Course Calendar or by their respective Faculty. In most cases, the student should contact his or her professor or academic advisor as soon as possible to arrange accommodations for classes, assignments, tests and examinations that might be affected by a religious holiday or spiritual observance.

Topics and Readings:

The syllabus describes the chapter themes for each week. All presentations will be held in class and then the slides will be posted on Avenue2Learn.

The syllabus below is only a rough outline and will be updated on Avenue when needed.






Week 1: January 10

Overview and Catch-up: Introduction to phonetics and phonemes



Week 2: January 17

Overview and Catch-up: Acoustic analysis and acoustic phonetics



Week 3: January 24

Instrumentation: Acoustic, articulatory and perceptual instrumentation



Week 4: January 31

Practice session 1: Acoustic analysis of vowels 

Assignment (Practice Session 1) due February 7

Week 5: February 7

Practical session 2: Cross-linguistic analysis of stops and fricatives

Assignment (Practice Session 2) due February 14

Week 6: February 14

Practice session 3: Acoustic synthesis with PRAAT                                                                                                           


Assignment (Practice Session 3) due February 28


Mid-term recess


Week 7: February 28

Student presentations:

  • Phonetic categories 1: Vowels
  • Phonetic categories 2: Fricatives



Week 8: March 7

Student presentations:

  • Suprasegmentals 1: Syllables, stress, timing, rhythm and tone
  • SLP and voice issues 1:Voice fundamental frequency



Week 9: March 14

Student presentations:

  • SLP and voice issues 2: Voice source variation and its communicative function
  • SLP and voice issues 3: Perception of voice quality



Week 10: March 21

Student presentations:

  • Speech perception 1: Theories and Models
  • Speech perception 2: Neural correlates



Week 11: March 28

Student presentations:

  • Forensic phonetics 1: Overview
  • Forensic phonetics 2: Speaker identification



Week 12: April 4

Student presentations:

  • Multimodal speech / Audiovisual speech
  • The articulatory phonology approach