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Mini Review - Educational Research ( 2023) Volume 14, Issue 1

The Impact of Spanish-English Switch Impact on the Production of Skills will benefit by Historic Fluency

Kylie Sydney*
Department of Spanish and Portuguese, University of California, Los Angeles, CA 90095, USA
*Corresponding Author:
Kylie Sydney, Department of Spanish and Portuguese, University of California, Los Angeles, CA 90095, USA, Email:

Received: 10-Jan-2023, Manuscript No. ER-23-86598; Editor assigned: 12-Jan-2023, Pre QC No. ER-23-86598; Reviewed: 25-Jan-2023, QC No. ER-23-86598; Revised: 27-Jan-2023, Manuscript No. ER-23-86598; Published: 31-Jan-2023, DOI: 10.14303/2141-5161.2023.251


This study looks at how people of Spanish ancestry in Southern California make uptalk in both Spanish and English. We propose that cross-linguistic influence in heritage bilinguals' uptalk may occur along multiple dimensions of intonation, following the L2 Intonation Learning Theory. The systemic, frequency, and realizational aspects of heritage bilinguals' uptalk were all examined in this study. The systemic aspect included the presence of uptalk as well as uptalk with IP-final deaccenting. The realizational aspect included pitch excursion and rise duration. The three dimensions of intonation, as shown by our data, exhibit varying degrees of cross-linguistic influence. Uptalk with IP-final deaccenting was produced by heritage bilinguals in both languages (systemic dimension), but it was more prevalent in English than in Spanish (frequency dimension). That is, heritage bilinguals' uptalk in Spanish includes IP-final deaccenting. However, heritage bilinguals appear to be aware that this is a feature of English that is prohibited in Spanish and attempt to suppress it as much as possible when producing uptalk in Spanish. However, in the realizational dimension, the heritage bilinguals demonstrated either individual variability influenced by language learning experience (i.e., rise duration) or phonetic assimilation to English (i.e., pitch excursion). When bilinguals' two languages compete for limited online resources, as in spontaneous speech production, the asymmetry across the dimensions suggests that phonological distinctions between L1 and L2 prosodic structures are maintained, whereas phonetic differences that do not result in any change in meaning are more likely to undergo cross-linguistic influence in order to reduce the cost of online processing. By focusing on heritage bilinguals, this study aims to fill a gap in the literature on the cross-linguistic influence of intonation. Heritage bilingualism introduces bilingual contexts that are frequently overlooked in conventional L2 acquisition scenarios (such as asymmetry between order of acquisition and language dominance, transfer from L2 to L1 intonation, and so on). The study of heritage bilinguals' intonation will contribute to the development of robust models of bilingual intonation because heritage bilinguals share many aspects of cross-linguistic influence.


Cross-linguistic influence, Heritage speakers, Heritage language intonation


According to (Grosjean et al., 1989), bilingual speakers are not two people who speak only one language. In one or both of their languages, they occasionally make speech sounds that are different from the norm for monolingual speech. If these sounds are noticeable enough to listeners, they could make their speech sound like that of a nonnative speaker. The mechanism of cross-linguistic phonetic and phonological influence as well as the relative difficulty or ease of acquiring L2 phonetics and phonology can be better understood by locating areas of convergence and divergence between bilinguals' L1 and L2 speech sounds. Current models in L2 speech learning, such as the (Revised) Speech Learning Model (Flege et al., 1995), are based on comparisons of L1 and L2 segments. The Perceptual Assimilation Model (-L2) (Best et al., 1995) (Flege et al., 2021) (Bohn et al., 2021) and According to Best and Tyler (2007), L1 and L2 sound categories share a phonological space, resulting in a variety of bidirectional cross-linguistic influences; A category in one language may approach a similar-sounding category in the other language or drift away from that category in order to maintain phonetic contrast (Flege et al., 2021) (Bohn et al., 2021). This is dependent on the perceptual similarity between L1 and L2 sound categories. (Flege et al., 2003).Multiple aspects of bilinguals' language learning experience (such as age of acquisition, size of speech community, language proficiency, language use, and attitude) can influence the presence, form, and direction of influence in the same linguistic contexts in some instances.

While bilinguals may produce and perceive segments and prosody differently from monolinguals, the majority of research on bilingual phonetics and phonology has focused on segments, while relatively little work has been done on prosody (Mennen et al., 2015)(Queen et al., 2006). L2 learners have been shown to exhibit nontarget- like patterns in various prosodic features in studies of L2 prosody, supporting the hypothesis that L1 transfer occurs. The prosodic marking of information structure is one such example (Gut et al., 2019)(Pillai et al., 2014)(Kim et al., 2019) (Nagano-Madsen et al., 2008) (O'Brien et al., 2014) (Ortega-Llebaria et al., 2007) (Rasier et al., 2006) as well as the varieties of pitch accents and how they are used phonetically (Grabe et al., 2004) (Jilka et al., 2000)(Kim et al., 2020).Deviations can take a variety of forms, such as substitution, depending on a variety of linguistic and extra linguistic factors, just like they did with L2 segments.


Given the complexity and multidimensionality of intonation, the method of viewing L2 intonation through a multilayered lens allows us to answer questions, such as whether different dimensions of intonation are equally susceptible to native language influence and whether certain dimensions develop at a faster pace than others with more experience in the L2 (Mennen et al., 2015). For instance, found that, after 30 months of living in the UK, Punjabi and Italian L2 learners of English produced fewer rising pitch contours than when they first arrived to the UK and predominantly used the falling pitch contour, which is the most prevalent contour in British English (i.e., frequency dimension). However, they did not use any complex contours (e.g., rise–fall and fall– rise) observed in British English, showing no improvement in the inventory of the tonal sequences of the target language (i.e., systemic dimension) (Jun et al., 2000) examined various aspects of the surface tone production in Korean accentual phrases (APs) by English L2 learners of Korean. They found that the learners were in general successful in using the high (H) tone in AP-final position (i.e., systemic dimension), but they failed to demonstrate f0 differences between AP-initial tones which are realized as the H tone when the AP begins with an aspirated or tense obstruent and as the low (L) tone in other contexts (i.e., realizational dimension). While surface AP tones in Korean do not change the meaning of an utterance, phrase boundaries do. Unlike the AP-initial tones which are segmentally triggered, the AP-final H tone is a strong perceptual cue that marks the right edge of an AP. Thus, the better success observed in learners’ production of the AP-final H tone suggests that L2 learners of Korean acquire the phonological properties earlier than the phonetic properties of intonation.

According to (Ritchart et al., 2014), it is considered a typical feature of Valley Girl speech, which evokes images of "rich, white young females from the San Fernando Valley" in Los Angeles County. Empirical evidence has dispelled this misconception of uptalk, which may have spread due to exposure in the media. Armstrong et al., for example 2015) found that there was no systematic gender or regional differences in the frequency of uptalk between Massachusetts English and Southern California English. According to female and male speakers in Southern California used uptalk at similar rates in non-floor-holding statements (17 percent and 16 percent, respectively), whereas female speakers used uptalk more than twice as frequently as male speakers in floor-holding statements (59 percent and 28 percent, respectively). Ritchart discovered that female speakers of uptalk had greater pitch excursions and later rise onsets (i.e., steeper rises) than male speakers when it came to the phonetic implementation of uptalk. Similar to Armstrong et al.'s female speakers, 2015) produced rises that were not only steeper but also longer than those of the male speakers. According to Armstrong et al., female speakers are more likely to use more "international gesture space" between short/steep and long/shallow rises. Armstrong et al. claim that ( According to Tomlinson and Fox Tree (2011), young female speakers in Southern California exploit the phonetic aspects of rises and/or use uptalk for more forward-looking purposes (e.g., directing attention to the upcoming utterance), both of which are associated with prolonged rising pitch. As a result, the widespread misconception that uptalk is common in Valley Girl speech may have developed. To put it another way, rather than the actual use of uptalk, the phonetic implementation of uptalk by young female speakers and/or the various pragmatic choices they make may have given the impression that their uptalk is more prominent than others.


Uptalk had an impact on languages across a variety of intonation dimensions. The heritage bilinguals produced uptalk in Spanish with IP-final deaccenting, a feature of English that has not been attested in non-heritage Spanish varieties, in the systemic dimension. They did, however, demonstrate significantly lower rates of uptalk with IP-final deaccenting in Spanish than in English in the frequency dimension. The fact that heritage bilinguals are generally successful at distinguishing between their two languages in terms of frequency suggests that cross-linguistic influence from English to Spanish is minimal in this dimension. The heritage bilinguals demonstrated either assimilation to English (i.e., pitch excursion) or individual variation influenced by language learning experience (i.e., rise duration) in relation to the realizational dimension. To put it another way, the realizational dimension of uptalk appears to be more affected by English-to-Spanish influence than the frequency dimension. According to the findings of this study, various aspects of intonation exhibit varying degrees of cross-linguistic influence. In particular, intonation's phonetic aspects are more susceptible to change than its phonological aspects.






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