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The study of sounds and how sounds are organized to encode meaning.


the study of the sounds of spoken language


the study of how sounds are organized and used in natural languages; the systematic use of sound to encode meaning in any spoken human language; the field of linguistics studying this use.


a method for teaching speakers of English to read and write in English


the smallest unit of sound in a language; one of a small set of speech sounds that are distinguished by the speakers of a particular language

the alphabetic principle

the understanding that letters and combinations of letters are the symbols used to represent the speech sounds; there are predictable relationships between written letters, sounds and words


one of several similar speech sounds that belong to the same phoneme, as the /t/ in the words tar and star.

Consonant voicing

For all vowels, the air flows freely. Consonant sounds are formed when the air is constricted as it moves toward the lips. This constriction can involve simply slowing the air down or stopping it completely. The different consonant sounds depend on how and where the air is slowed or stopped.


a manner of articulation involving an audible release of breath


addition of a high front tongue position; The pronunciation of a speech sound by raising the tongue to or toward the hard palate.


Indicated that spellers write only some of the letters in a word.

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