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SASS-SAAL Symposium: "World Englishes And The Extending Circle Varieties"

The SASS-SAAL symposium was held on the evening of Friday 2 September 2016. It attracted an enthusiastic crowd of over 30 academics, students and members of the public. This symposium, the second event to be co-hosted by the School of Arts & Social Sciences (SASS) and the Singapore Association for Applied Linguistics (SAAL), featured two emerging linguists in Singapore, Dr Ahn Hyejeong from Nanyang Technological University (NTU) and Dr Ao Ran from the National Institute of Education (NIE).

Dr Ahn discussed how Korean English teachers from two metropolitan regions of South Korea were investigated regarding their attitudes towards five Asian Englishes used in Singapore, India, China, Japan and Korea. The data was analysed using both qualitative and quantitative methods. The results revealed that South Korean teachers of English were surprisingly resistant to and ignorant of Asian Englishes, which they dismissed as 'wrong English'. Dr Ahn said that her findings had important implications for teaching, as it was essential to teach learners to recognise other varieties of English and to communicate with their speakers. Next, Dr Ao explored the pronunciation of English learners in Mainland China, focusing on Yunnan English. He discussed phonological aspects of this variety of English, in particular its consonants, vowels and rhythm, comparing them with other better-known varieties such as American English. The paper ended by highlighting some pedagogical implications for the study of World Englishes. 

The symposium ended at 7pm and was followed by a scrumptious dinner.

A rapt audience at SASS-SAAL Talk.

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