Pronunciation Contrasts in English:  by Don L. F. Nilsen, Alleen Pace Nilsen
134 pages, $24.95 list
1-57766-641-0
978-1-57766-641-7
Pronunciation Contrasts in English
Second Edition
The authors draw from their own multiple years of teaching and from the knowledge and ideas of 50 linguists and ESL teachers who specialize in particular languages. Part I offers an entire section on English spelling as a morphophonemic system. Here, Nilsen and Nilsen clearly explain concepts and patterns of English spelling, pronunciation, and meaning to ease the process of learning English for non-native students—as well as their teachers. In addition, the authors provide sample activities that creatively and effectively engage students in grasping a particular concept, and include illustrative examples that show English is a systemic language.

In Part II, the authors provide extensive lists of both vowel and consonant contrasts, each with phonetic diagrams and descriptions, minimal pairs (both isolated and in sentences), and specific languages for which the contrast may be problematic. These valuable examples help students hear and produce pronunciation differences that are important in English and bring their pronunciation closer to that of native English speakers. Both prospective and practicing teachers will appreciate the flexibility and freedom afforded by these well-designed materials.
Reactions
“This is one of the best-organized books I have come across. Wonderful selection of minimal pairs. Easy for students to practice and master. Highly recommend to other instructors.” — Larisa Conner, Southeastern Community College

“Thank you for reissuing this book! It is a must-have for any serious ESL teacher or those who work with international students!” — Sydney Rice, University of Missouri, Rolla

“It’s terrific. I teach refugees and immigrants who have a great variety of first languages, including Arabic, Farsi, Russian, and Chaldean. The specific vowel sounds and minimal pairs and tongue positions are very helpful. The sentences are good for drill.” — Stephanie Selim, Southwestern College

“I recommend this book to all my ESL teachers-trainees as an essential part of their teaching library.” — Deborah Osborne, William Penn University

“This is exactly what second-language students need to succeed in English.” — Richard Appelbaum, Broward Community College

“This is one of the best books I have received in a long time. I fully intend to utilize it at the earliest opportunity as a text.” — Jeannette Redding, Oxnard College

“The book is a classic! I was delighted to learn that it had been reissued.” — Laurie Wellman, University at Albany

“This is a very thorough compilation of the most widespread articulation errors made by non-native speakers of English. It is an extremely helpful resource for clinicians working with ESL students.” — Irene Belyakor, SUNY Geneseo