|Quick Facts |
FeaturePad is a computer program used for instruction in phonology in the Linguistics Department at UCLA. The Program was a joint effort of Bruce Hayes and Kie Zuraw and was funded by the Office of Instructional Development.
You need Windows 95 or higher to run FeaturePad.
Unfortunately, there is no Mac version.
Phonology studies how speech sounds pattern in languages. The pattern can be specified precisely by writing rules in a formal notation. The analysis of an entire language consists of finding the full set of rules and establishing the order in which they apply. Rules are expressed using the linguistically relevant phonetic properties—features—of the sounds involved. Features are used in phonology because they permit precise, general rules.
However, it is difficult to use features accurately, and learning them (there are about 30) takes practice. FeaturePad was created to help students both to learn features and to use them with precision. To this end, the program checks solutions, but never actually finds them, in order to force the student to think actively. FeaturePad also checks answers for redundancy, sounding a warning when the user is using more features than are needed for a particular rule.
Click here to go to FeaturePad main page. You can download the software for free.
Contact Bruce Hayes.