(Presented at the 1st MLE Conference, “Reclaiming the Right to Learn in One’s Own Language,” Capitol University, Cagayan de Oro City, Feb 18-20, 2010.)
ABSTRACT: Embedded in the human perception is the distinction of speech rhythm to discriminate between languages. The rhythm of Filipino speech is given empirical validation in this paper using the computational and statistical methods prescribed by Ramus, Nespor, and Mehler (RNM) implemented on the Filipino Speech Corpus of the Digital Signal Processing Laboratory. Following the two sub-grouped convention, syllable-timed and stress-timed, the Filipino language was shown to be syllable-timed, and in the extended classification system, it was shown to be Mora-timed. The study was intended for the comprehensive modeling of the prosodic parameters of Filipino Speech for a natural-sounding Filipino Text-to-Speech (TTS) system, and a robust Automatic Speech Recognition system. The paper was already published and presented in a digital speech processing conference, but it was recently brought to our attention that the study has major implications to the linguistic description of the Filipino language, and to the recently ratified mother-tongue based multilingual education. Similar to digital speech systems, a person studying a second language (L2) will decide on the segment units he or she will use. If not guided properly, the student will be segmenting speech according to the rhythm of the native tongue (L1). Proper awareness of such speech parameters is very important for the student to avoid confusion, and especially for the teacher who will need to come up with an appropriate program to facilitate effective language acquisition.
For the complete article, click A Computational Approach To Filipino Speech Rhythm.