Sound Contrast: /æ/ vs. /ə/

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Listen to the difference between the vowel sounds (/æ/ vs. /ə/) in the following pairs of words.

  • bad bad | bud bud
  • bat bat | but but
  • cab cab | cub cub
  • cap cap | cup cup
  • crash crash | crush crush
  • fan fan | fun fun
  • flash flash | flush flush
  • ham ham | hum hum
  • lack lack | luck luck
  • lag lag | lug lug
  • last last | lust lust
  • ramp ramp | rump rump

Depending on your native language distinguishing the difference can be very easy or very difficult.

Test your ability to hear the difference between /æ/ and /ə/.

Instructions: listen to the word and then pick the best match.


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