Using Thai lexical tones to improve Thai learners’ Korean stop consonants pronunciation

Napasri Suwanajote, Suwaree Yordchim, Achara Wongsothorn, Cholthicha Sudmuk


The research aims to study the use of lexical tones in Thai in improving the pronunciation of the Korean stop consonants for Thai learners. This is a quantitative research. There are two tests for fifteen participants Thai university students, who completed First Step Korean, an elementary-level Korean language MOOC (massive open online course) on Coursera, Each one contains nine Korean monosyllabic words with lax, aspirated, and tense initials. Their syllable structures comprise of initial consonant, vowel, and final consonant (CVC). Test 1 is given in Korean alphabets with their English meaning. Test 2 is given in Thai transliteration. Test 3 is for three native speakers of Korean to evaluate whether each Thai speaker correctly pronounce the word list.  The results reveal that Thai speakers tend to have problems with Korean words with aspirated initials. Most of the Korean words with aspirated initials are evaluated by the native speakers as incorrect (x̅ = 6.67%). On the other hand, the performance of Thai speakers for Korean words with lax and tense initials are all correct as judged by the native speakers (x̅ = 100%).

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