Phonemes and the International Phonetic Alphabet


Before you begin this assignment it will be necessary to have read the section of the chapter covering language (Chapter Nine) concerning Descriptive Linguistics. You will also want to consult your notes from the lecture on Descriptive Linguistics, as I will cover all of the information necessary to successfully complete this assignment. If you missed the class during which I covered this information you will need to borrow the notes of a friend as I will not go over the basic of this assignment in office hours.

Located just under the link to this document will be the link to a document containing the names of all the students enrolled in this course, named “Assigned Page”. Each student name in this document will be associated with a page number from the text-book. Please locate the page number associate with your own name. Locate the first full paragraph on that page. This is the paragraph you will use to complete both parts of this assignment. Make sure that you have the correct page as this is part of the assignment and 50% of the total points will be deducted from your final score if you use the wrong page/paragraph.

Part One: Phonemes and the International Phonetic Alphabet

For the first portion of the assignment you will need to translate the first 20 words of your paragraph into the symbols of the International Phonetic Alphabet. You may need to do a bit of research to find the symbols you need to express this. This link ( will take you to the Wikipedea page for the IPA symbols used by the various English dialects. To assist you in entering this for submission you can use the following website to type your answers: Then simply paste your results into a .doc, .docx, or .rtf file. Make sure that you submit your assignment in one of the three accepted formats. I will not accept any other format! You should also include the text you are translating so we can compare the two easily when we grade your assignment.

Example for part one: The two sentences below have been translated into IPA so that you can see how your own efforts should look.

The text to be translated: My name is Christian Petersen. I am a college instructor.
After translation: maɪ neɪm ɪz kɹɪstt͡ʃʌn pʰitʰɹsʌɴ. aɪ æm eɪ kʰɑlɪd͡ʒ ɪɴstɹʌktoɹ.

Part Two: Morphemes, Bound & Free
For the second part of the assignment, you will need to identify the morphemes for the first 40 words of the first complete paragraph on the page you were assigned. Keep in mind that free morphemes must be related to the original word. For example the word “firetruck” consists of two free morphemes “fire” and “truck,” but “some” is a single morpheme despite the fact that “so” and “me” could be considered individual free morphemes. This is because the meaning of “some” is not based on the morphemes “so” and “me.” You should also include the text you are translating so we can compare the two easily when we grade your assignment.

Example for Part Two: Here is an example to help you format your assignment.
The capture would be performed robotically, and the relocated asteroid would become a destination for astronauts to explore—and, possibly, for space entrepreneurs to mine.
TheF captureF wouldF beF performF/edB robotF/icB/allyB, andF theF reB/locateF/dB asteroidF wouldF becomeF aF destinationF forF astronautF/sB toF exploreF—andF, possiblyF, forF spaceF entrepreneurF/sB toF mineF.


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