Selected Phonological Processes (Patterns)

Assimilation (Consonant Harmony)
One sound becomes the same or similar to another sound in the word
Process Description Example
Velar Assimilation non-velar sound changes to a velar sound due to the presence of a neighboring velar sound kack for tack
Nasal Assimilation non-nasal sound changes to a nasal sound due to the presence of a neighboring nasal sound money for funny
One sound is substituted for another sound in a systematic way
Process Description Example
Fronting sound made in the back of the mouth (velar) is replaced with a sound made in the front of the mouth (e.g., alveolar) tar for car; date for gate
Stopping fricative and/or affricate is replaced with a stop sound tee for see; chop for shop
Gliding liquid (/r/, /l/) is replaced with a glide (/w/, /j/) wabbit for rabbit
Deaffrication affricate is replaced with a fricative shop for chop
Syllable Structure
Sound changes that affect the syllable structure of a word
Process Description Example
Cluster Reduction consonant cluster is simplified into a single consonant top for stop
Weak Syllable Deletion unstressed or weak syllable in a word is deleted nana for banana
Final Consonant Deletion deletion of the final consonant of a word bu for bus


Bauman-Waengler, J. A. (2012). Articulatory and phonological impairments. New York, NY: Pearson Higher Education.

Bernthal, J., Bankson, N. W., & Flipsen, P., Jr. (2013). Articulation and phonological disorders. New York, NY: Pearson Higher Education.

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