Coxall, Katie- Louise (2018) Eliciting Phonetic Data and Metadata during Linguistic Field Research. Masters thesis, University of Huddersfield.

Having identified a gap for research which combines the perspectives of experienced field researchers in relation to the methods used when collecting data on the phonetic and phonological aspects of language, this research will collate and explore the results of a survey of 16 experienced field linguists who have shared insight into tried and tested methods of data collection.

Through an online survey, respondents answered questions about their experiences of data collection with a particular focus on areas which were identified from the literature as having potential to cause difficulties. The areas of difficulty addressed were: the target language and informant(s), minimal pairs, affricates, connected speech, allophones, variation and metadata and, finally, recording methods. Participants were asked about the methods used to elicit data and the problems that they encountered throughout their research, followed by ways in which these problems were overcome.

Through analysis of the results and reference to the existing literature, a number of areas of methodological consensus have been identified. These areas of consensus, along with less well-known techniques, have contributed to a discussion of best practise in the collection of phonetic and phonological data. Using the results of the survey, each area has been explored and a set of recommendations have been proposed to guide future linguistic documentation projects. The suggested recommendations are also intended to serve as a prompt with additional techniques for use when problems are encountered by researchers during their research.

Whilst useful for any phonetic and phonological linguistic documentation project, the research was motivated by the diminishing rates of linguistic diversity throughout the world. By forming recommendations based on the opinions and experiences of 16 field researchers, it is hoped that the advice generated will be of assistance to future researchers in their efforts to document endangered language varieties.

COXALL FINAL THESIS.pdf - Accepted Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial No Derivatives.

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