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Analysis of HDFC Standard Life Spell Bee India Spells Competition.

Spell Bee-India Spells is an Indian counterpart of Scripps National Spell Bee competition.American Literacy Council and Simplified Spelling Society oppose Scripps’s Spell Bee competition because they think that such competitions don’t promote right practices, put a lot of pressure on kids and promote drawbacks of English spelling system. They also point at the long term costs of literacy difficulties world over and the problem faced by learners of English language across globe.

We have also been surveying English language teachers and learners across India, and we have found that everybody is on the same platform, when it comes to reading, spelling, speaking & writing our native language words with the help of English Alphabetic Script and speaking in English language. Both, the teachers and the learners are on the same platform. And this exact what is reflected in the Indian version of Spell Bee. It is not that the hosts aren’t educated. HDFC Standard Life Spell Bee 2012 was hosted by a well educated Member of Parliament and the best quiz host of India. In fact, he is the best when it’s come to quizzing in India and considered as the quiz master of India. We have analyzed 2009 & 2012 competitions and found that a lot of words were pronounced incorrectly. The essence of the competition is judging the right pronunciation by listening to the right pronunciation and alternative pronunciation of words. If the participants are not getting to hear the right pronunciation how would they be able to identify the right spelling? This is the drawback of our education system. Our focus has always been on spellings as we have to write to pass examination. It’s the fault of our education system.

Following are the words mispronounced by pronouncers of ‘HDFC Standard Life Spell Bee India 2009”, the prime focus of which is helping learners of English:

  1. Mispronounced Anonymity as əˈnɒn.ə.ˈmɪt-i (Incorrectly stressed on NON & MIT) Actual Pronunciation: /ˌænəˈnɪməti/

  2. Mispronounced Rehabilitation as ˌriːˌhæbɪlɪˈteɪʃən (Incorrectly stressed on HAB & TA) Actual Pronunciation: /ˌriːəˌbɪlɪˈteɪʃən/

  3. Mispronounced Illicit as /ˈɪl-i-sɪt/ (Incorrectly stressed on IL) Actual Pronunciation: /ɪˈlɪsɪt/

  4. Mispronounced Instantaneity as /ˌɪn.stən.ˈteɪ.nɪti/ (Incorrectly stressed on TA) Actual Pronunciation:/ˌɪn.stənt.ə. ˈneɪ. ɪ.ti/ & /ɪnˌstænt.ə. ˈneɪ. ɪ.ti/

  5. Mispronounced as Preferential as /ˌprefəˈrenʃi:ə)l/ (Incorrectly placed ‘i’ after ʃ. There no ‘i’ sound after sh=‘ʃ’) Actual pronunciation: /ˌpref.əˈren.ʃəl/

  6. Mispronounced Anachronism as ˈæn.ə.kroʊ.ˌnɪz.əm. (Incorrectly stressed on AN) Actual pronunciation; /əˈnækrəˌnɪz.əm/

  7. Mispronounced Connubial as /ˈkɒn.uː.bəl/ (Incorrectly stressed on CON) Actual pronunciation: /kəˈnjuːbiəl/ & /kəˈnuːbiəl/

  8. Mispronounced Denouement as /ˈden.ə. mɑ̃ː/ (Incorrectly stressed on DEN) Actual pronunciation: /deɪˈnuːmɑ̃ːⁿ/ & /ˌdeɪ·nuˈmɑ̃ː/

  9. Mispronounced Indubitable as /in.dʌp.ɪ.t təbəl/ (Incorrectly pronounced DUB as DUP) Actual pronunciation: /ɪnˈduːb.ɪ.təbəl/ & ɪnˈdjuː b.ɪ.təbəl/

  10. Mispronounced Belligerence as / ˈbel.ɪ.dʒərəns/ (Incorrectly stressed on BEL) Actual pronunciation:/bəˈlɪdʒərəns/

  11. Mispronounced Ameliorate as /əˈmel-iə-ˌreɪt/ (Incorrectly stressed on MEL) Actual pronunciation: /əˈmiːliəˌreɪt/

  12. Mispronounced Wednesday as /ˈwed.nəs.deɪ/ (Incorrectly stressed on WED) Actual pronunciation: /ˈwenz.deɪ/

  13. Mispronounced cassiopeia as ˌkæs.ɪ. ˈoʊ-piə (Incorrectly stressed on ‘O’) Actual pronunciation: /ˌkæs.ɪə(oʊ)ˈpiːə/

  14. Mispronounced Rapscallion as /ˈræps.ˈkæl.iən/ (Incorrectly stressed on RAPS) Actual pronunciation: ræps.ˈkæl.iən

  15. Mispronounced Ephemeris ˈef.ə.mə.rɪs (Incorrectly stressed on EF) Actual pronunciation: /ɪˈfem.ə.rɪs/

Following are the words mispronounced by pronouncers of ‘HDFC Standard Life Spell Bee India 2012”, the prime focus of which is helping learners of English:

Mispronounced Placate as /pləˈseɪt/ (Incorrectly pronounced CATE as SATE) Actual pronunciations: /pləˈkeɪt/ or /ˈpleɪkeɪt/

Mispronounced Counterfeit as /ˈkaʊn.tə.fi:t/ (Incorrectly pronounced FEIT as FEET) Actual pronunciation: /ˈkaʊn.tə.fɪt/ or /ˈkaʊn.t̬ɚ.fɪt/

Mispronounced Insatiable as /ɪnˈseɪ.ʃiə.bəl/ (Incorrectly pronounced ‘i’ after sh=ʃ) Actual pronunciation: /ɪnˈseɪ.ʃə.bəl/

Mispronounced Courtier as /koʊ.ˈtiər/ (Incorrectly stressed on TIER) Actual pronunciation: /ˈkɔːrtiər/

Mispronounced Couture as /ˈkuː.tiər/ (Incorrectly stressed on COU) Actual pronunciation: /kuːˈtjʊə(r)/ or /kuːˈtʊr/

Mispronounced Denouement as /dɪ.ˈnaʊ.mənt/ (Incorrectly stressed on NOU) Actual pronunciations: /deɪˈnuːmɑ̃ːⁿ/ or /ˌdeɪ·nuˈmɑ̃ː/

Mispronounced Effervescent as /ə.ˈfɜr.və.sənt/ (Incorrectly stressed on FER) Actual pronunciation: /ˈef.ər.ves.ənt/

Mispronounced Annihilate as /ˌæn.ˈhaɪ.ˌleɪt/ (Incorrectly stressed on HI) Actual pronunciation: /ə.ˈnaɪ.ɪ.ˌleɪt/

Mispronounced Symmetrical as /sə.ˈmɪt.rɪ.kəl/ (Incorrectly pronounced MET as MIT) Actual pronunciation: /sə.ˈmet.rɪ.kəl/

Mispronounced Eloquent as /ˈel.ə-kwɪnt/ (Incorrectly pronounced QUENT as QWINT) Actual pronunciation: /ˈel.ə-kwənt/

Mispronounced Ludicrous as /lu:d-ɪ- kriəs/ (Incorrectly pronounced CROUS as CRIOUS) Actual pronunciation: /lu:d-ɪ-krəs/

Mispronounced Inimitable as /ɪnˈɪm.ɪ.təbəl/ (Incorrectly stressed on ‘IN’) Actual pronunciation: /ɪˈnɪm.ɪ.təbəl/

Mispronounced Cynosure as /saɪ.ˈnoʊ. ʃɪər/ (Incorrectly stressed on ‘NO’ and pronounced ‘SURE’ as ‘SHEER’) Actual pronunciation: /ˈsaɪnəʃʊr/ or /ˈsaɪnəʃʊə(r)/ or /ˈsɪnəʃʊr/ or /ˈsɪnəʃʊə(r)/

Mispronounced Plebeian as /ˈpleb.i:ən/ (Incorrectly stressed on PLEB) Actual pronunciation: /plə.ˈbi:ən/

Mispronounced Mechanism as /mə.ˈkæn.nɪzəm/ (Incorrectly stressed on CHAN) Actual pronunciation: /ˈmek.ə.nɪzəm /

Mispronounced Consumer as /kən. ˈzju: .mər/ (Incorrectly ‘SU’ as ‘ZU’) Actual pronunciation: /kənˈsjuː.mər/ or /kənˈsu:.mər/

Mispronounced Austere as /ɔːˈteə(r)/ (Incorrectly pronounced ‘tere’ as ‘tare’) Actual pronunciation: /ɔːˈstɪər/

Mispronounced Cacophony as /ˈkæk.ə.fəni/ (Incorrectly stressed on CAC) Actual pronunciation: /kə.ˈkɒf.əni/

Mispronounced Asymmetrical as /ə.sɪ.ˈmɪt.rɪ.kəl/ or /ˌeɪ.sɪ.ˈmɪt.rɪ.kəl/ (Incorrectly pronounced MET as MIT) Actual pronunciation: /ə.sə.ˈmet.rɪ.kəl/ or /ə.sɪ.ˈmet.rɪ.kəl/ or /eɪ.sɪ.ˈmet.rɪ.kəl/

Mispronounced Surveillance as /ˈsɜːr.və.ləns/ (Incorrectly stressed on SUR) Actual pronunciation: /sər.ˈveɪ-ləns/

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