A Contrastive Analysis of consonantal phonemes and Phonotactics of Igbo and Ịjo̩ (Izo̩ n)


  • Ndubuisi Ogbonna Ahamefula Department of Linguistics and Nigerian Languages,
  • Olusanmi Babarinde Department of Linguistics and Nigerian Languages


Ijo, Igbo, language learner, language pedagogy, phonemes, phonotactics


This study examines a contrastive analysis of the phonology of the Igbo and the Ịjọ languages.  While Igbo is a major and national language predominantly spoken in the south-eastern region of Nigeria, Ijo̩ is a minority language in the Niger-Delta region. The paper analyses the different phonological structures of the two languages within the theoretical framework of the Contrastive Analysis. Descriptive method is used to analyse data obtained through interviews using purposive sampling. The study discovers that Contrastive Analysis is prognostic; learner-oriented and focuses on the language pedagogic needs of the Second Language or Alternate Language learner which in-turn provides input for the curriculum design for the L2 or AL learner. Several areas that may pose learning problems for the Ịjọ learner of Igbo and vice versa are identified at segmental, syllable, and tonal levels. These pedagogic problems are predicted based on the differences that exist in the phonology of the two languages. The nasalized vowels of Ịjọ and some aspects of the Ịjọ phonotactics would constitute areas of difficulty for the Igbo learner of Ịjọ. This study is imperative given the large population of Igbo and Ijo̩ speakers in the Niger-Delta and south-eastern regions respectively for some reasons due to proximity. 

Author Biographies

Ndubuisi Ogbonna Ahamefula , Department of Linguistics and Nigerian Languages,

University of Nigeria, Nsukka

Olusanmi Babarinde, Department of Linguistics and Nigerian Languages

University of Nigeria, Nsukka


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How to Cite

Ogbonna Ahamefula , N. ., & Babarinde, O. . (2018). A Contrastive Analysis of consonantal phonemes and Phonotactics of Igbo and Ịjo̩ (Izo̩ n). Journal of The Linguistic Association of Nigeria, 21(2), 206–223. Retrieved from https://jolan.com.ng/index.php/home/article/view/173