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Teaching and Learning, 15(2),25-37
Singaporeans speak English in a variety of ways. There are speech patterns that are the same as those an educated speaker of English might expect, but there are also features of spoken English that are distinctively regional and that may cause initial problems for foreigners in Singapore. This variation in Singapore often depends on the background of speakers and the situation in which English is used (Tay 1982).
For the last twenty-five years, linguists have studied the way English is spoken by Singaporeans, among them Tongue (1974),
Crewe (1977), Tay (1 978), Brown (1 986) and Biedrzycki (1994). Most of these studies, however, have concentrated on sentence
structures, word usage or phonemes (vowels and consonants). There has been relatively little research done on the prosodic
features of Singapore English (SE) with the notable exception of Deterding (1993, 1994a and 1994b) who has examined rhythm,
intonation patterns and stress placement. My paper attempts to fill in some gaps in the description of this variety of English by analysing intonation features in a sample of about 400 educated SE speakers.
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