1. UCLA's Interactive IPA Chart (from Ladefoged's "A Course in Phonetics")
|Screenshot of UCLA's IPA Interactive Chart|
2. York University's Interactive IPA Chart
|Screenshot of York's IPA Chart|
This IPA chart is similar to the UCLA chart above but was created by Eric Armstrong and has a few extra features that students may find helpful. Just like the UCLA website, you first have to click on a section of sounds to zoom in before you can play with the individual features. Once you're zoomed in, you can click on an individual symbol to hear what sound it represents; one advantage to this website is that the sound file plays without taking you to a different screen.
Another advantage is that if you mouse over any words/symbols on the chart, you can find out more information. For instance, if you mouse over a manner or place label on the consonant chart, a definition box will pop up, like this:
3. Iowa's Interactive Sounds of Spoken Language
|Screenshot of Iowa's Phonetics Website|
If you aren't learning the IPA charts for world languages but are focusing on either American English, Spanish, or German, then you will most likely find this website helpful. From the home page (which you see in the screenshot above), you can click on your language of choice. Clicking on the American English option will take you to a new screen that looks like this:
|The Sounds of American English|
|Focus on the /z/|
Every aspect of this website is interactive. You can play the animation to watch what happens in the sagittal section when the sound in focus is made. You can choose a play-by-play, in which case each stage of the sound is fully described. Or you can listen to sound files on the right-hand side while watching what the outside of the mouth looks like during sound production. This tool is especially helpful for anyone working in the speech pathology field.
4. Interactive Sagittal Section
|Screenshot of Interactive Sagittal Section website|
There are other online interactive IPA tools, such as the University of Victoria's IPA chart and another IPA chart that is simply housed at www.ipachart.com. The goal is for you to find one that you can work with and that helps you understand the material better. Phonetics shouldn't be frightening--it should be fun to explore the sounds of language.
If you have know any other phonetics websites that you feel should be mentioned, leave the website (and the reason you like) in the comments below.