Wednesday, March 16, 2011

A/An


In Singapore schools we are often taught to use the indefinite article an before words beginning in vowels, and a elsewhere. However, many teachers seem unaware that this rule applies at a phonological level and not an orthographic one — in other words, it applies to sounds, not spelling.

This misunderstanding of the rule has probably led to the error in the caption above (Straits Times online, 14 February 2011): a NTU Linguistics student ought to be an NTU ..., because NTU begins in a vowel sound, /e/.

4 comments:

Fox said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
titan six said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Ludwig Tan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Manta Ray Lee said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.