Vowel Chart

American English Vowels and Example Words



  FRONT CENTRAL BACK
HIGH /i/ feed   boot /u/
 
/ɪ/ fib /ʊ/ book 
MID /e/ fade r/ r/ boat /o/
curd  keeper   
/ʌ/ /ə-ɪ/  
/ɛ/ fed cut  about   
LOW /æ/ fad 


 

    /ɔ/bought
  /ɑ/ cot
(can also be said /ɔ/)
(can also be said /ɑ/)
Diphthongs   ɪ/ cried  
  ɪ/ boy 
ʊ/ cloud  


/i/
Tongue Height High
Tongue Position Front
Example Words initial easy, even, eager
mid leave, sweet, machine
final ski, bee, three
/ɪ/
Tongue Height High
Tongue Position Front
Example Words initial if, inner, instant
mid ship, delicious, finish
final  
/e/
Tongue Height Mid
Tongue Position Front
Example Words initial eight, Abraham, aching
mid stage, cages, arrange
final delay, away, say
/ɛ/
Tongue Height Mid
Tongue Position Front
Example Words initial edge, every, elephant
mid said, press, defend
final  
/æ/
Tongue Height Low
Tongue Position Front
Example Words initial apple, actor, average
mid hat, cats, faster
final  
/ɜʳ/
Tongue Height Mid
Tongue Position Central
Example Words initial earn, herb, urgent
mid burn, fern, current
final fur, refer, stir
/əʳ/
Tongue Height Mid
Tongue Position Central
Example Words initial  
mid dollars, colorful, different
final another, river, burger
/ʌ/
Tongue Height Mid
Tongue Position Central
Example Words initial up, other, unless
mid cut, money, construct
final  
/ə-ɪ/
Tongue Height Mid
Tongue Position Central
Example Words initial around, occur, offend
mid minus, conference, excellence
final sofa, comma, Anna
/ɑ or ɔ/
Tongue Height Low
Tongue Position Central
Example Words initial odd, opposite, octopus
mid rocks, stop, robber
final spa, ma (mother), pa (father)
ɪ/
Tongue Height Gliding from low to high position
Tongue Position Gliding from central to the front region
Example Words initial ice, island, ivory
mid kind, ride, liar
final cry, sky, supply
ɑʊ
Tongue Height Gliding from the lowest to the highest position
Tongue Position Gliding from central to back position
Example Words initial owl, hour, out
mid about, count, trousers
final how, now, plow
/u/
Tongue Height High
Tongue Position Back
Example Words initial use, union, unity
mid cute, huge, fuse
final do, cue, true
/ʊ/
Tongue Height High
Tongue Position Back
Example Words initial  
mid full, sugar, could
final  
/o/
Tongue Height Mid
Tongue Position Back
Example Words initial over, omit, open
mid phone, stone, robes
final row, blow, show
/ɔ or ɑ/
Tongue Height Low
Tongue Position Back
Example Words initial awful, author, orange
mid caught, fallen, talking
final saw, raw, law
ɪ/
Tongue Height Glide from the lowest to the highest position
Tongue Position Glide from back to front position
Example Words initial oil, oink, oyster
mid foil, noise, avoid
final soy, boy, ahoy
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