Scrutinizing Schwa in Pakistani English Phonology

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Ali Hussain



This study explores the distinct phonological feature in Pakistani English with exclusive reference to schwa, a mid-central weak vowel in English. This phoneme has a vital role in giving Pakistani English a unique phonological characteristic in the sub-continent. The study investigated by giving participants a list of commonly used words containing schwa. The age of participants ranged from nineteen to twenty-two and they were male and female students of a private sector university in Lahore, Pakistan. Their responses were recorded in a quiet and non-interruptive atmosphere and compared with Received Pronunciation (RP). A few recorded responses were compared to Standard British English Pronunciation on speech analyzer software Praat. On the bases of data collected, it is maintained that Pakistani English is a non-native variety which possesses different phonological traits. This study also investigated as to what happens when schwa is restructured and replaced with substitute phonemes under the influence of urduized and regional dialects.  

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Ali Hussain. (2023). Scrutinizing Schwa in Pakistani English Phonology. JOURNAL OF APPLIED LINGUISTICS AND TESOL, 5(4), 20-32. Retrieved from