Advanced Undergraduate Phonetics Reading List

[updated 22/4/20 with information about online access in Oxford]

A. Principal texts

International Phonetic Association (1999) Handbook of the International Phonetic Association. Cambridge University Press. [Not on SOLO - the only hits there book reviews from various journals.]

Ladefoged, P. and S. F. Disner (2012) Vowels and Consonants: An Introduction to the Sounds of Languages. 3rd edition. Blackwell. This edition is available online at

B. Reference and background reading


Catford, J. C. (1977) Fundamental Problems in Phonetics. Edinburgh University Press. [Not online]

Ladefoged, P. and I. Maddieson (1996) The Sounds of the World's Languages. Blackwell. [Not online]


Jakobson, R. and L. R. Waugh (1979) The Sound Shape of Language. Harvester Press. 2nd edition 1987 is online via SOLO:


Abercrombie, D. (1965) Studies in Phonetics and Linguistics. Oxford University Press. Chapters 3-4.

Abercrombie, D. (1991) Fifty Years in Phonetics. Edinburgh University Press. Chapter 9.

Gimson, A. C. (1962) An Introduction to the Pronunciation of English. Edward Arnold. There are also several later revised editions edited by Ramsaran and Cruttenden.

Jones, D. (1960) An Outline of English Phonetics. Heffer. (Numerous editions at other dates.) Especially chapters XVI (Strong and weak forms), XXVI-XXVIII (Assimilation, Rhythm), XXXII (Syllabification) and Appendix A (Transcription).

Wells, J. C. (1990) Syllabification and Allophony. Chapter 8 of S. Ramsaran, ed. Studies in the Pronunciation of English. Routledge. (Avoid the temptation to get immersed in other papers in this volume.)

Phonetics and phonology of selected language families/areas

Africa: Clements, G. N. (2000) Phonology. Chapter 6 of B. Heine and D. Nurse (eds) African Languages: an Introduction. Cambridge University Press.

North America: Mithun, M. (1999) The languages of Native North America. Cambridge University Press. Chapter 1.

Former Soviet Union: Comrie, B. (1981) The languages of the Soviet Union. A chapter is devoted to each language family: thus, refer to sections 2.2 (Altaic), 3.2 (Uralic), and especially 5.2 (Caucasian).

East and South-East Asia: Comrie, B., ed. (1990) The major languages of East and South-East Asia. (First published in 1987 as part of the larger work The World's Major Languages.) Croom Helm. There is not a great deal on the phonology of each language or language family, but it is nevertheless an interesting survey. The following sections are the most relevant: Chapter 2, section 2 (Thai phonology); chapter 3, section 2 (Vietnamese phonology); chapter 6, section 2 (Burmese phonology); chapter 8, section 2 (Korean phonology); chapter 10, section 2 (Malay phonology).

Australia: Dixon, R. M. W. (1980) The languages of Australia. Cambridge University Press. Chapter 6.

See also Ladefoged and Maddieson (1996) and the IPA handbook, listed above.

C. Specific topics

Lass = N. J. Lass (1996) Principles of Experimental Phonetics. Mosby.

1. Coarticulation and models of speech production

Fowler, C. A. and E. Saltzman (1993) Coordination and coarticulation in speech production. Language and Speech 36, 171-195.

Kent, R. D., S. G. Adams and G. S. Turner (1996) Models of speech production. Lass ch. 1. Although this version is not available on-line, most of an earlier version of the same article is available on Google Books using the search term "raymond kent models of speech production" (in N. J. Lass, ed. 1976 Contemporary Issues in Experimental Phonetics).

Kent, R. D. and F. D. Minifie (1977) Coarticulation in recent speech production models. Journal of Phonetics 5, 115-133.

Keating, P. A. (1990) The window model of coarticulation: articulatory evidence. In J. Kingston and M. E. Beckman, eds. Papers in Laboratory Phonology 1: Between the Grammar and Physics of Speech. 451-470.

Whalen, D. H. (1990) Coarticulation is largely planned. Journal of Phonetics 18, 3-35.

West P. (1999). The extent of coarticulation of English liquids: An acoustic and articulatory study. Proceedings of the XIVth International Congress of Phonetic Sciences. Vol. 3, 1901-4.

Essay topics:

a) 'Coarticulation is a regrettable by-product of the artificial division of speech into discrete segments.' Discuss. [2002]

b) Why does coarticulation occur? [2002]

c) What are the main issues to be accounted for by a theory of speech production? Describe how TWO different theories have addressed these issues. [2002]

d) Describe, in outline, the components of a composite (i.e. complete) model of speech production. [2002]

2. Approaches to speech perception

Goldinger, S. D., D. B. Pisoni and P. A. Luce (1996) Speech perception and spoken word recognition: research and theory. Lass ch. 8.

Cooper, F. S., P. C. Delattre, A. M. Liberman, J. M. Borst and L. J. Gerstman (1952) Some Experiments on the Perception of Synthetic Speech Sounds. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America vol. 24, no. 6. 597-606.

Delattre, P. C., A. M. Liberman and F. S. Cooper (1955) Acoustic Loci and Transitional Cues for Consonants. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America vol. 27, no. 4. 769-773.

Miller, G. A. and P. E. Nicely (1955) An analysis of perceptual confusions among some English consonants. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America vol. 27, 338-352.

Liberman, A. M., F. S. Cooper, D. P. Shankweiler, and M. Studdert-­Kennedy (1967) Perception of the speech code. Psychological Review 74 (6), 431-461.

Lisker, L. and A. S. Abramson (1970) The voicing dimension: some experiments in comparative phonetics. Proceedings of the Sixth International Congress of Phonetic Sciences, Prague, 1967. Not available electronically, but you can ask me about getting hold of a copy.

Approaches to speech perception (b)
- Variation in category boundaries
Ganong III, W. F., (1980) Phonetic categorization in auditory word perception. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance 6 (1), 110-125.

Connine, C. M., D. Titone and J. Wang (1993) Auditory word recognition: extrinsic and intrinsic effects of word frequency. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory and Cognition 19, 81-94. Available online via SOLO.

- Prototype theory
Kuhl, P. K. (1991) Human adults and human infants show a “perceptual magnet effect” for the prototypes of speech categories, monkeys do not. Perception and Psychophysics 50 (2), 93-107. Reprint on author's website.

Kuhl, P. K. (1992) Speech prototypes: studies on the nature, function, ontogeny and phylogeny of the "centers" of speech categories. In Y. Tohkura, E. Vatikiotis-­Bateson and Y. Sagisaka, eds. Speech perception, production and linguistic structure. 239-264.

Kluender, K. R., A. J. Lotto and L. L. Holt (1998) Role of experience for language-specific functional mappings of vowel sounds. Journal of the Acoustical
of America 104 (6), 3568-3582.

- Exemplar theory: a "gestalt" approach to speech perception
Johnson, K. (1997) Speech perception without speaker normalization. In K. Johnson and J. W. Mullenix, eds. Talker variability in speech processing. 145-165. Download from author's website

Goldinger, S. D. and T. Azuma (2003) Puzzle-solving science: the quixotic quest for units in speech perception. Journal of Phonetics 31 (3-4), 305-320.

Essay topics:

a) What is the evidence for categorical perception of phonological contrasts?

b) Do listeners identify discrete phonological units? If so, how?

3. Prosody

Tone and intonation

Bruce Hayes, Introductory Phonology, chapter 15 [online via SOLO]

Alan Cruttenden (1986) Intonation. Cambridge University Press (especially chapters 1, 3, 4, and 6) [online via SOLO]

D. Robert Ladd (1996) Intonational Phonology. Cambridge U. P. (especially chapters 1 and 2) [NB searches for this on SOLO yield various book review articles rather than online access to the book itself. It is theoretically available to read on the Cambridge Core website, using your Oxford Single Sign-on for institutional access via Shibboleth, but the site didn't seem to work for me even though it had me logged on with institutional access.]

Chapter 10 of San Duanmu (2000) The Phonology of Standard Chinese. OUP [online via SOLO]
focusses more on tone than intonation.


Hayes, Introductory Phonology, chapter 14 [online via SOLO], mainly on the (abstract) phonological principles of stress placement

The following reading is suggested because it shows that the phonetics of stress in some languages can be very different from what generally occurs in most languages, and is therefore a warning against some of the rather over-simplified explanations of stress given in many textbooks.

Williams, B. (1999) The phonetic manifestation of word stress in Welsh. In G. Dogil, B. Williams and H. van der Hulst, eds. Word prosodic systems in the languages of Europe. Berlin, New York: Mouton. 311-334. Available online via SOLO, but also as a preprint: 1998_a.pdf This 1999 chapter is more accessible online than earlier publications by Williams of much the same material.

Essay topics:

a) Explain the terms stress, accent and rhythm, and how they are related. (2006)

b) How do languages vary in their use of pitch, and how do phonological theories accommodate the different possibilities? (2006)

c) How have the insights of autosegmental phonology of tone languages been applied to intonation?

4. Non-linear phonology

Quick overview of various prosodic phenomena (handout from my MPhil lectures):

Goldsmith, J. (1976) Autosegmental Phonology. MIT PhD thesis. Chapter 1: An overview of Autosegmental Phonology. Available on-line from MIT 

Anderson, S. R. (1976) Nasal consonants and the internal structure of segments. Language 52.2, 326-344. [On line via SOLO.]

Clements, G. N. (1985) The geometry of phonological features. Phonology Yearbook 2, 225-252. [On line via SOLO: search for "clements the geometry of phonological features"]

Essay topics:

a) Explain the problems that contour tones, diphthongs, and affricates present to segmental phonological theory, and how autosegmental phonology addresses them. (2006)

b) [This relates more particularly to the Clements (1985) paper.] What is an autosegmental tier? Can any group of phonological features spread?

5. The phonetics-phonology interface

Chomsky, N. and M. Halle (1968) The Sound Pattern of English Chapter 7, especially pp. 293-8., or the 6-page extract is here [80MB]

Mohanan, K. P. (1986) The Theory of Lexical Phonology. Dordrecht: D. Reidel. pp. 154-181, extract here.

Halle, M. (1983) On distinctive features and their articulatory implementation. Natural Language and Linguistic Theory 1, 91-105.

Keating, P. A. (1988) The phonology-phonetics interface. In F. Newmeyer (ed.) The Cambridge Linguistic Survey, vol. I: Linguistic Theory: Foundations 281-302. Not available online, but 1996 author (p)reprint in UCLA Working Papers in Phonetics is available from here

Ladefoged, P. (1988) The many interfaces between phonetics and phonology.  UCLA Working Papers in Phonetics 70, 13-23. Published more formally in
Dressler, Wolfgang U. (1992) Phonologica 1988 : Proceedings of the 6th International Phonology Meeting.

Essay topic: How can speech phenomena be divided between phonetics and phonology?