Use these videos to help you understand where the stress falls within a word or in a phrase. Pronunciation can change depending on the stress patterns - clear vowels become reduced to vowel schwa /ə/ or vowel ɪ in unstressed syllables and words.
Vowel ah /a/ has a tongue position that is low and back. Vowel Schwa /ʌ/ has a mid-central tongue position. The following list are pairs of words, the first having vowel ah and the second vowel schwa.
Vowel Schwa is the central vowel. Keep the tongue in a resting, central position for this sound. Vowel Schwa is written as /ə/ when unstressed, and as /ʌ/ when stressed. The pronunciation is the same, but stressed Schwa will generally have a longer duration. Unstressed Schwa will be short in duration.
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