Charles Sturt University
Charles Sturt University

Languages

Languages differ from one another in many ways. This website focuses on how aspects of speech (e.g., consonants, vowels, syllables, tones) differ between languages. The following table includes summary resources to enable speech-language pathologists (SLPs) to compare languages.

It is useful to have a copy of the International Phonetic Alphabet to assist with interpreting the information provided in the table below.

More extensive descriptions of languages and speech acquisition data are available in Phonological Development and Disorders in Children: A Multilingual Perspective (Zhu Hua & Dodd, 2006), the International Guide to Speech Acquisition (McLeod, 2007), and on a companion page on this website:

Information about speech assessments in languages other than English is found on companion pages on this website

Language IPA* Info.
for SLPs
Speech tests Intelligibility in Context Scale** Description ***
Afrikaans
(Afrikaans) 
IPA - No   Ethnologue
Arabic (ﺍﻠﻌﺮﺒﯿﱠﺔ) IPA .pdf Yes Ethnologue
Assyrian
Assyrian
- - No Ethnologue
Bulgarian
(Български)
IPA - Yes Ethnologue
Cantonese (Yue)
(粵語 (廣東話))
IPA .pdf Yes (see Chinese - Traditional) Ethnologue
Chinese (Simplified)
(简体中文) 
(China, Singapore)
- - No -
Chinese (Traditional)
(繁體中文) 
(Hong Kong, Taiwan)
- - No -
Croatian
(hrvatski)
IPA - No Ethnologue
Danish
(dansk)
IPA - Yes - Ethnologue
Dari
(دری)
IPA - No   Ethnologue
Dutch 
(Nederlands)
IPA .pdf Yes - Ethnologue
English IPA - Yes Ethnologue
Farsi
(فارسی)
IPA - No -
Fijian
(Vakaviti)  
IPA - No -
Filipino 
(Pilipino)
IPA .pdf No   Ethnologue
Finnish 
(suomi)
IPA .pdf Yes Ethnologue
French 
(Français)
IPA .pdf Yes Ethnologue
German
(Deutsch)
IPA .pdf Yes Ethnologue
Greek
(Πρότυπο Νέας Ελληνικής)
IPA .pdf Yes Ethnologue
Gujarati
Gujurati
IPA - No   Ethnologue
Hungarian
(Magyar)
IPA .pdf Yes Ethnologue
Hebrew 
(עברית)
IPA .pdf Yes Ethnologue
Hindi
(हिन्दी)
IPA - No Ethnologue
(Fijian Hindi)
Icelandic
(Íslenska)
IPA - Yes Ethnologue
Indonesian
(Bahasa Indonesia)
 
IPA - No   Ethnologue
Italian
(Italiano)
IPA - No Ethnologue
Japanese
(日本語)
IPA .pdf Yes Ethnologue
Khmer
Khmer word 
IPA - No Ethnologue
Korean
(한국어)
IPA .pdf Yes Ethnologue
Malay
(Bahasa Malayu)
IPA   No Ethnologue
Maltese
(Malti)
IPA .pdf Yes Ethnologue
Mandarin
(Putonghua)
IPA .pdf Yes (see Chinese - Simplified) Ethnologue
Norwegian
(Norsk)
IPA .pdf Yes Ethnologue
Polish
(Polski)
 
IPA - Yes   Ethnologue
Portuguese
(Português)
IPA .pdf Yes Ethnologue
Punjabi/ Panjabi (ਪੰਜਾਬੀ) IPA - Yes Ethnologue-PAN Ethnologue-PMU Ethnologue-PNB
Romanian
(româna)
IPA - Yes Ethnologue
Russian
(русский)
IPA - No Ethnologue
Samoan - .pdf Yes - Ethnologue
Serbian
(Српски)
IPA - No   Ethnologue
Sesotho IPA .pdf No - Ethnologue
Slovak
 (Slovak) 
IPA - No   Ethnologue
Slovenian
(slovenšcina)
IPA - Yes Ethnologue
Somali
(Soomaali)
IPA - No Ethnologue
Spanish
(Español)
IPA .pdf Yes Ethnologue
Swedish
(Svenska)
IPA - Yes Ethnologue
Tagalog
(Tagalog/
Filipino)
IPA - No Ethnologue
Tamil IPA - Yes - Ethnologue
Telugu - - Yes - Ethnologue
Thai
( ภาษาไทย )
IPA .pdf Yes Ethnologue
Turkish
(Türkçe)
IPA .pdf Yes Ethnologue
Venda
(Tshivenda)
- - No - Ethnologue
Vietnamese
(Việt)
IPA .pdf Yes Ethnologue
Welsh
(Cymraeg)
IPA .pdf No Ethnologue
Xhosa
(isiXhosa)
- - No - Ethnologue
Zapotec - .pdf No - Ethnologue
Zulu
(isiZulu)
IPA - No - Ethnologue

References

Zhu Hua & Dodd, B. (2006). Phonological development and disorders in children: A multilingual perspective. Cleavdon, UK: Multilingual Matters.

*** Lewis, M. P. (Ed.). (2009). Ethnologue: Languages of the world. Dallas, TX: SIL International. Retrieved from http://www.ethnologue.com/

McLeod, S. (Ed). (2007). The international guide to speech acquisition. Clifton Park, NY: Thomson Delmar Learning.

** McLeod, S., Harrison, L. J., & McCormack, J. (2012). Intelligibility in Context Scale. Bathurst, Australia: Charles Sturt University. Retrieved from http://www.csu.edu.au/research/multilingual-speech/ics

* Weinberger, S. H. (2012). Speech accent archive. George Mason University. Retrieved from http://accent.gmu.edu/browse_native.php