Phonological processes in the non-native phonology of Akan


  • Isaac Nyarkoh Department of Ghanaian Languages & Department of Akan-Nzema Education University of Education, Winneba & Methodist College of Education, Akim Oda
  • John Odooma Department of Ghanaian Languages & Department of Akan-Nzema Education University of Education, Winneba & Methodist College of Education, Akim Oda


Assimilation, simplification, Akan, non-native speakers, Phonological processes


This paper seeks to investigate the phonological processes embedded in the phonology of native Ewe speakers of Akan. This study has become necessary because Akan is a lingua franca in Ghana where most people have some level of speaking and comprehension competence. However, at the early production or pre-advanced phase of L2 acquisition, the Ewe speakers of Akan encounter numerous segmental and prosodic challenges which trigger various phonological processes as resolution strategies. Therefore, this study bridges this gap in language acquisition by examining the phonological processes entrenched in the phonology of Ewe speakers acquiring Akan as their L2. The challenges usually arise from phonological dissimilarities between the L1 source phonology and the L2 target. The paper argues that the inadequacies in L2 acquisition at the pre-advanced phase trigger some phonological processes such as vowel raising and lowering, anteriorization, and de-stridentization among others as phonological simplification strategies to resolve challenging native Akan forms. The study employs focus group discussion as a data collection approach and it is formalized within the Perceptual Assimilation Model of second language learning (PAM- L2) (cf. Best 1993; Best & Tyler 2007). 


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How to Cite

Nyarkoh, I., & Odooma, J. (2023). Phonological processes in the non-native phonology of Akan. Journal of The Linguistic Association of Nigeria, 26(2), 106–127. Retrieved from