Sephonics - Learn The IPA Alphabet

Sephonics 1.0 is a freeware Windows program that will teach you the English phonetic alphabet, which is a subset of  the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA, in short). Below, you find descriptions of all exercises in Sephonics.

Read more about Sephonics.

The Phonetic Alphabet

This exercise introduces the phonetic alphabet. If you click the phonetic signs with the right mouse button you will hear which sound they represent. If you instead click on them with the left mouse button, the clicked sign, a word that includes the represented sound and a transcription of the word will be shown on the screen. Of course, you can right click the word to hear its pronunciation.

Match Sound With Phonetic Sign

In this exercise you will hear a sound that you are to match with the phonetic sign that represents it. The sound is repeated three times so that you will have enough time to hear which one it is. To show which sign represents the sound you click the sign with the left mouse button. If you want to hear the sound more than three times you can click the Repeat button.

In case you do not know which sign represents the sound you can click any three signs and the right one will start blinking to catch your attention. Alternatively, you simply click the New Sound button to get a new sound, but then you will not know which sign matched the played sound.

In this exercise it is not possible to hear which sound the phonetic signs represent by using the right mouse button since this is precisely the knowledge that is being practised.

Which Spelling Is Correct?

Here you will see a transcription of a word along with three alternative ways to write the word with ordinary letters. The assignment is to choose which one of the alternatives is correct by clicking on it. If the clicked alternative is the correct way to spell the word the box will turn green or yellow based on the number of times you have tried. A correct answer on the first try generates a green box, the second or third tries generate a yellow box.

If you click the alternatives with the right mouse button you will hear their pronunciation so that you may compare it with the transcription.

Which Sound Do You Hear?

In this exercise you will see a word and four phonetic representations of different sounds. Your task is to decide which of the four sounds that is pronounced in the given word. To choose a sound click on it with the left mouse button. It is also possible to hear how the word and the alternative sounds are pronounced by using the right mouse button. To provide context a sentence that includes the given word is displayed on the screen.

How Is the Word Spelled?

This exercise gives an opportunity to practise how to read transcribed text. You will see a transcribed word and when you know which word it is you type it in the box using the key board. When done typing, press return or the Correct my answer button to get the answer corrected.

The text you type is checked by the program. It the text is correct it will be in black but if it is wrong it will be red. The signs have to be in the right position in the word in order not to be red. Thus, it might be the case that a sign is red but still should be included in the word at another position. If the text is red you are wise to try another spelling to get as few incorrect answers as possible.

How Is the Word Spelled?

This exercise gives an opportunity to practise how to read transcribed text. You will see a transcribed word and when you know which word it is you type it in the box using the key board. When done typing, press return or the Correct my answer button to get the answer corrected.

The text you type is checked by the program. It the text is correct it will be in black but if it is wrong it will be red. The signs have to be in the right position in the word in order not to be red. Thus, it might be the case that a sign is red but still should be included in the word at another position. If the text is red you are wise to try another spelling to get as few incorrect answers as possible.

How Is the Word Transcribed?

Here you get to transcribe text yourself. You will see a word spelled with ordinary letters that you are to transcribe using the signs in the charts to the left f the screen. When you use the left mouse button on the signs they show up in the text box to the right where you can see your transcription.

The text you type is checked by the program. It the text is correct it will be in black but if it is wrong it will be red. The signs have to be in the right position in the word in order not to be red. Thus, it might be the case that a sign is red but still should be included in the word at another position. If the text is red you are wise to try another spelling to get as few incorrect answers as possible.

Memory

This is the classic memory game. A board with a number of cards turned up-side-down is displayed on the screen. To play the game you turn two cards at a time by clicking on them with the left mouse button. If the two cards match you are awarded one point. If the cards do not match they will turn back again and you might try with two other cards.

In this memory game the cards matches if they have the same word written on them; on the one card written with ordinary letters, on the other written with phonetic signs. You can choose to play with 12, 16 or 28 cards, the more cards the more difficult to find the matches. When you want to start a new game you simply click the New game button.

 
Learn the IPA Alphabet
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