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Minnesota The Week To Come: a Campus Calendar
New Linguistic Center
U II AIE11IJ1U 1
By MICHAEL JULIAR
"I wish I had $100 for every
student that has switched from
the literary college to the school
of engineering or business admin-
istration to get away from the
foreign language requirement. I
could support this whole center
with that money."
!The speaker is Prof. Harlan L
Lae,, a young associate professor
In the psychology department, and
h =is referring to the new Center
for"Research on Language and
The new center officially begins
its- work tomorrow. But it is al-
ready' hummig with electric type-
writers, computers and voice spec-
togram machines which record on
paper the characteristic frequen-
cies ofa spoken word.
One fascinating machine, which
Lan hopes, to whittle down to the
size of an average tape-recorder
but whilch now occupies half a
room in the basement of a Hill St.
building, teaches a person how to
pronounce correctly any sound the
First, the student learns how to
hit the right pitch of the for-
eign word or phrase.: A zero-cen-
tered dial hooked up to a com-
puter that. constantly compares
what the student says to what he
should be saying tells the student
whether his pitch is too high or too
low., After several errors and the
correct response, the computer
'witcIhes to comparing spoken and
'The" 'zero-centered dial again
tels th~e student how accurate he
has been. The computer itself
does not make an instantaneous
comparison, but the time lag is
so slight that the student does not
notice the lag.
Lastly, the tempo of the foreign
phrase and the student's pro-
nounciation is compared. Only aft-
er three perfect or near perfect
pronounciations a c c o r d i n g to
pitch, intensity and tempo does
the computer then go on to the
This equipment and other de-
vices are being used by Lane and
other University personnel in its
concentrated study of language
learning under Title Six of the
National Defense Education Act of
Sometimes dubbed the Sputnik
Act, this law calls for centers of
language research to study ways
language can be taught. The cen-
ter here is working with a $500,000
a year grant from the United
States Office of Education.
The grant, according to a ver-
bal agreement, is to run for four
years. But if the center is success-
ful, it will probably continue to
tget the grant for as long as it is
"The half-a-million dollars a
year is probably an underestimate
for the time when the program
:once gets rolling," Lane says.
Active in the center will be
'seven faculty members - Lane,
Prof. John C. Catford of the lin-
guistics department and head of
the English Language Institute;
Prof. Frank M. Koen of the psy-
chology department and research
assistant= at the Center for Re-
search in Learning and Teaching;
'Prf. Herbert H. Paper of the
Near Eastern language department
and chairman 'of the linguistics
'department; Prof. Kenneth L. Pike
of -the linguistics department;
Prof. Melvyn I. Sommer of the
education school; Prof. Donald E.
P. Smith of the education school,
and chief of the Reading Improve-
ment Service, Bureau of Psycho-
logical Services, and Prof. Ronald
S. Tikofsky of the speech depart-
There will also be about 20 grad-
uate students and technical and
research personnel. The Behav-
ior Analysis Laboratory, which
Lane has been directing, will be
absorbed by the center.
From the research could come
findings that may have a signifi-
cant effect, perhaps in ways unex-
pected, on our knowledge about
language learning and a wide
range of practical uses not only
in big language classes but in
do-it-yourself language learning
PROF. HARLAN LANE
at home and in treating language-
To illustrate the scope and com-
plexity of the center's research
activities, here in brief are r*
few of the study topics beig
perused by the center scientists:
-- Machine - taught fluency.
Without mastering prosodic fea-
tures (pitch, loudness and rhy-
thim), no one can speak a foreign
language with "native-like fluen-
cy." Yet prosodic features have
received scant attention in lan-
Already Lane and his associates
have developed a computer-based
teaching machine for teaching the
prosodic features. Thanks to SAID
(Speech Auto-Instructional De-
vice) the center researchers will
be able to process utterances from
any language and quickly take
"pictures" of prosodic features. Al-
so, by comparing prosodic pic-
tures of the student's native and
second languages, the center sci-
entists may predict which kinds of
utterances will be difficult and
which will be easy to learn.
--Baby's talk. Unlike foreign-
language learning, native-lan-
guage learning takes place in a
haphazard manner. Still, what the
child learns from birth to pre-
school years forms the seed-bed
for later language learning in th
Center scientists have already
begun to compile complete tape-
recording of infants' vocal utter-
ances. normal and abnormal, in
the first months of life. Recording
begins with delivery at the hospi-
tal and follows the infant to
hospital nurseries and to the crib
The purpose is to analyze and
understand, by scientific means,
the normal and abnormal lan-
guage development by discover-
ing how the infants' utterances
become differentiated and struc-
tured as a function of matura-
tional and environmental factors.
- Meanings without words.
Meanings are conveyed by certain
phonetic features, by gesture, fa-
cial expression and so on. These
"paralinguistic" behaviors, how-
ever, are not entirely universal.
An investigation of paralinguistic
norms for various cultures will
suggest which of these paralinguis-
tic features should be systemat-
ically taught in a foreign language
-Discrimination. How the lan-
guage learners discriminate sounds
is an important question that still
needs much study., For instance,
the center researchers have al-
ready proved that anyone who has
learned one language need not
worry about learning anothei
To speak a language the speaker
must first learn to discriminate
among the sounds of that Xn-
guage. This is what babies do
when they learn to talk - they
must begin from scratch and do it
gradually. But not so with adults.
They simply transfer what they
have already learned in auditory
discrimination and apply it to
foreign language. They do it so
fasti and matter-of-factly that
they hardly notice it.E
-To compare or not to com-
pare grammars. Most everybodyI
knows that interference from na-
tive-language grammar is a major
cause of difficulty in foreign-lan-
guage learning. Research is need-
ed on the possible use of compara-
tive grammar in the classroom.
In general, Western language
teachers do not favor making ex-
plicit statements of similarities
end differences between native
and foreign languages. In the So-
viet Union, explicit comparison in
the classroom has been advocated.
-Shaping and maintenance of
vocal responding in foreign lan-
guage. The duration, or pitch, of
a given foreign sound is a case in
Most laymen may think of pro-
nunciation learning as mere listen-
ing and imitating. To the experts,
it involves many factors, includ-
ing the knowledge of the proper
duration of a given foreign sound.
Much work, such as with the
machine described earlier, has al-
ready been done by the center re-
In one previous experiment the
researchers asked students to 'say
"u' each time a light was flashed
and tried to make the students say
a little longer (or shorter) "u" by
rewarding them with pennies for
only those of desired length. Al-
though most students did not
know their vocal behavior was be-
ing changed, they soon produced
the desired length of pronuncia-
But more important, the re- Collegiate Press service
searchers have found that if the MINNEAPOLIS - Students at
step between the student's current the University of Minnesota re-
responses and the target response cently ran a nursery school-for
is too big, he will fail to reach college students.
the target. If too small, he will Students-college students, that
eventually succeed, but that is not is-attending the school, which
altogether efficient. But if he is met in the university's student un-
taught in a progression of mdi- ion, busily played with building
vidually adjusted steps, he will blocks, modeling clay, crayons,
learn efficiently and faster. board games, and jigsaw puzzles.
The center's basic purpose is Crayon drawings lined the wall
"to enable people of all ages and behind them.
capabilities to learn languages The school was presided over by
more effectively," Lane says. Betsy Luck, a sophomore educa-
Two-Fold Need tion major, and was promptly
"The problem facing the cen- named "Mother Luck's Nursery
ter may be viewed as meeting a School."
two-fold need: first, to coordinate Mother Luck's charges were not
the efforts of scientists and edu- going through a second childhood
cators concerned with several brought on by the pressures of
facets of language development final examinations-as the casual
by providing funds, facilities, and observer might have deduced-but
byproviding clinatewithin ond were actually staging a protest
iunectal cimatdecwithindodemonstration against a decision
functional uni; ad second,n tby the student union's board of
governors to band card playing in
closely integrated research, devel- the building's grill area.
opment, and dissemination activi- The board decided that card
ties that will lead to material playing cannot be controlled there
improvement in language instruc- and could spread into gambling.
tion." "We hope the center will Card games are permitted in the
sound like the tower of Babel," union's gameroom, but the stu-
Lane says. dents say that the room is too
"We hope for real fallout from small to accommodate everyone
our research at the center," Lane who wants to play.
emphasizes. He especially wishes So Mother L u c k 's Nursery
that the center will have some im- School was born as a "spontane-
nact here in Ann Arbor in "clean- ous group action" to protest the
ing up our own backyard," as he situation. One enrolee said most
calls it. of the students involved in the
Also, he expresses a desire that protest preferred to "work through
the residential college not make channels." But, he added, "we in-
the same mistakes that have been tend to push this thing all the
made in the past. way."
Follows Progress Another student sat quietly
The Defense Department will puffing on his pipe and building a
follow closely the progress of the tower with little red blocks which
center because of its involvement he explained were called "notch-
in teaching foreign languages to ies." Many students drew with
its soldiers going overseas. But crayons, and several exerted a
the department is not yet directly joint effort to solve a Flintstone
involved with the program. Jigsaw puzzle.
Like the Institute of Science At one point, Mother Luck or-
and Technology, the Institute for ganized a "milk march" in which
Social Research and the Phoenix the students marched by twos to
Project, the language center will a vending machine to purchase
report to Vice-President for Re- their milk.
search A. Geoffrey.Norman. The school attracted a good deal
One problem-dissemination ofof attention in the grill, as stu-
general knowledge on language dents flocked around to inquire
and linguistics-exists today be- what it was all about. A number
cause of "lack of coordination," of them signed a petition protest-
ing the ban, which had been
Bantu Sibilants thoughtfully provided by Mother
"Where does a man go if h'' Student union officials declined
wants to find out about the sibi- to comment on the situation until'
lants in Bantu? Only if he has a they have a chance to talk it over
friend who has a friend who at their next meeting, but in the
knows about the subject is he meantime, they requested the stu-
likely ever to get the information dents to remove their crayon
he wants." drawings until such time as they
The government recently wanted obtained authorization for them.
such a library set uno in Seattle.
"But we argued that such a co- (tudy
ordination center could not be set 17 Hosts Study
up in isolation. It must be in the /
middle of resear~ch and able to be OfT*
used by researchers, such as will
now live here," Lane says.
The annual Linguistic Institute
will return to the University this
summer and the National Science
Foundation has made available
40 study grants to students of
ments: Recital Hal, School of Music linguistics.
8:30 p.m Co-sponsored by the Linguistic
Society of America and the host
Independent socialist Club Lecture: university, the institute is essen-
David Komatsu, writer for "New Por tially an educational "common
tics," "President Johnson's war on
Poverty," Sun., Jan. 31, 7:30 p.m. market" dealing with studies of
3516 SAB. linguistics.
Established in 1928, it brings to-
General Notices gether leading scholars and stu-
dents each summer in greater con-
4 p.m.-Michael Athans of the
Massachusetts Institute of Tech-
nology electrical engineering de-
partment will speak on "The Opti-
mum Control of Norm-Invariant
Systems" in Rm. 1504, East Eng.
8:30 p.m. - Professors Gustave
Rosseels, violinist, and Wallace
Berry, pianist, will perform in a
music school Sonata Recital in
Rackham Lecture Hall.
"In the Midst of Plenty," a
symposium on American poverty,
will be held at the University Feb.
16 through Mar. 2.
During the two week period,
distinguished speakers will discuss
various aspects of the topic.
The schedule of speakers will
be the following:
-Feb. 16-Kenote Program:
Symposium Introduction by Presi-
dent Harlan Hatcher: Keynote
Address by Michael Harrington,
Jr., "In the Midst of Plenty,"
Rackham Lecture Hall.
-Feb. 17-Mayor Richard Daley
of Chicago, "The Blight of Our
Cities," League Ballroom.
-Feb. 22-Prof. Charles Kil-
lingsworth of the economics de-
partment of Michigan State Uni-
versity, "Automation and Unem-
-Feb. 23-Irving Bluestone, ad-
ministrative assistant to Walter
Reuther, "The Political Voice of
the Poor," Rackham.
-Feb. 25-Vernon Alden, presi-
dent of Ohio University, "The,
War on Poverty," Rackham.
-Feb. 26, Wilbur Cohen, as-
sistant secretary of health, edu-
cation and welfare, "Young and
Unskilled, Old and Ignored," Un-
-March 1-Russell Kirk, "Jus-
tice and Poverty: A Conservative
-March 2-Whitney Young, Jr.,
executive director of the National
Urban League, "Minorities Ruled:
The Problem of the Non-White
All programs, start at 8 p.m.
cal Bldg. II'4JA1 JtI
clBd.1will speak on "Coming Changes
7:30 p.m.-Brice Carnahan of in World Affairs" in the Michigan
the engineering college will give League Ballroom. His talk is co-
the Ford computer lecture in the sponsored by Assembly and Pan-
Natural Science Aud. hellenic Associations.
8 p.m.-Rabbi Sherwin Wine of 8:30 p.m. - John Farrer will
the Birmingham Temple, whose conduct and Michael Robbins will
"athiest" position and remarks on ttoire du Soldt" Stravin kys
religion and theology have at- man Ceterd331 T sa t
tracted considerable attention re- man Center, 331 Thompson St.
cently, will speak on "Humanism
in the Synagogue" at the Hillel ! od Adds
Foundation. j1E GO A G
THURSDAY, FEB. 4
3 p.m.-A seminar on "Hospital ace
Supply Decisions - Stuidies fromr~r
Hospital Systems Research Group,
Georgia Institute of Technology" The University of Colorado will
will be held in Rm. 69, Business offer a course in peace and tech-
Administration Bldg. niques of achieving it during the
4 p.m.-Donald N. Michael of coming semester.
the Institute for Policy Studies The course, entitled Problems
will speak on "Cybernation and and Prospects for Peace, will ex-
Social Planning for the Use of plore the sources of human con-
New Knowledge" in the East Con- flict from economic, historical,
ference Rm., Rackham Bldg. philosophic, political, psychologi-
4:10 p.m. - Talcott Parsons of cal, sociological, and technological
Harvard University will give the points of view, and will examine
Charles Horton Cooley Lecture in some of the problems which must
the Rackham Amphitheater. He be solved if further world wars
will speak on "Cooley's Contribu- are to be prevented.
tion to Internalization of Culture The course, for which two hours
and Social Elements in the Per- of academic credit are being given,
sonality." will meet once a week.
LAST TIMES TONIGHT at7and 9
U THE IDIOT
* Directed by George Lampin and starring deli-
cate-featured, limpid-eyed Gerard Philippe in
e his first major role.
i I N TH E A RCH ITE CTUR E AUDITOR IUM I
The Third Ann Arbor Film Festival is coming in March.
* TIE C ilifi GUIrrrrsrrrrrrrrrrrrr
SUNDAY, JAN. 31 TUESDAY, FEB. 2 4:15 p.m. - Eric Berne, chair-
4:30 p.m. - Leslie Breidenthal, 4:15 p.m.-Prof. Robin Williams man of the San Francisco Social
bass baritone, will perform at the of the Cornell University sociology Psychiatry Seminars, will speak
Recital Hall, School of Music Bldg. department will speak on "Social on "Marital Games and Con-
7 and 9 p.m.-Cinema Guild will Science and Social Policy in Race tracts" in Aud. C.
present Dostoyevsky's "The Idiot" Relations" in Aud. D. 7 and 9 p.m. - The Cinema
in the Architecture Aud. WEDNESDAY, FEB. 3 Guild will present Alec Guinness
and Peter Sellers in "The Lady-
8 p.m.-Earl Robinson, nation- 3 p.m. - Clark R. Mollenhoff, i llersitect e ud
ally known composer-balladeer,Wahntncrspdet wl killers" in Architecture Aud.
aly non omoerbalaeeWashington correspondent, will~ 8 p.m.-The Crest Travel Club
will present a concert at the First speak on the "Washington Cover- wil s .--TheiCrinAuT.a
Unitarian Church. Up" in the Rackham Ampithe- ill show a film in Aud. A.
8:30 p.m.-School of Music Kap- ater, Rackham Bldg. SATURDAY, FEB. 6
pa Kappa Psi recital will fea- 4 p.m.-Prof. A. Rees Midgley 7 and 9 p.m. - The Cinema
ture wind and percussion instru- of the pathology department will Guild will show Jean Costeau's
ments at the Recital Hall, School speak on "Human Gonadotropins: Orpheus in the Architecture
of Music Bldg. S o m e Recent Immunobiological Aud.
MONDAY, FEB. 1 Studies" in Rm. 2501, East Medi- 8 p.m.--Arthur Schlessinger, Jr.,
"HOLDS THE VIEWER BREATHLESS
AND LEAVES HIM LIMP!
The Daily Official Bulletin is an
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sity of Michigan, for which The
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Notices may be published a maxi-
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Student organization notices are not
accepted for publication.
SUNDAY, JANUARY 30
First of a New Television Series-
Some Heroical Spirits - George Kish,
geography department, host, "Great
Voyages of Discovery from Classical to
Modern Times": WWJ-TV Detroit,
channel 4, 12 m.
School of Music Degree Recital-Leslie
Breidenthal, bass baritone: Recital Hall,
School of Music, 4:30 p.m.
Cinema Guild - Dostoevski's "The
Idiot": Architecture Aud., 7 and 9
School of Music Kappa Kappa Psi
Recital-Wind and Percussion Instru-
D~ept. of iEnglishi Language and it- t't~ hn spsiVa n
erature Lecture: Prof. Ralph Mills, U- centration than is possible at any
(Continued on Page 5) one institution during the year.
"See just how exciting and compelling a motion
picture can be."-Hugh Holland, Mich. Daily
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