Definitions for international phonetic alphabet

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  1. International Phonetic Alphabet(ProperNoun)

    A standardized set of symbols for representing the sounds of human speech.

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  1. International Phonetic Alphabet

    The International Phonetic Alphabet is an alphabetic system of phonetic notation based primarily on the Latin alphabet. It was devised by the International Phonetic Association as a standardized representation of the sounds of oral language. The IPA is used by lexicographers, foreign language students and teachers, linguists, speech-language pathologists, singers, actors, constructed language creators, and translators. The IPA is designed to represent only those qualities of speech that are distinctive in oral language: phonemes, intonation, and the separation of words and syllables. To represent additional qualities of speech, such as tooth gnashing, lisping, and sounds made with a cleft palate, an extended set of symbols called the Extensions to the IPA may be used. IPA symbols are composed of one or more elements of two basic types, letters and diacritics. For example, the sound of the English letter ⟨t⟩ may be transcribed in IPA with a single letter, or with a letter plus diacritics, depending on how precise one wishes to be. Often, slashes are used to signal broad or phonemic transcription; thus, is less specific than, and could refer to, either or depending on the context and language.


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"international phonetic alphabet." STANDS4 LLC, 2015. Web. 21 Apr. 2015. < phonetic alphabet>.

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