Kristie Durham, a former graduate student, and Rachel Hayes-Harb, Associate Professor, recently published an article: Native English Speakers’ Perception of Arabic Emphatic Consonants and the Influence of Vowel Context.
Hayes-Harb, R., & Durham, K. (2016). Native English speakers’ perception of Arabic emphatic consonants
and the influence of vowel context. Foreign Language Annals, 1–16.
"We examined native English speakers’ ability to perceive Arabic consonant contrasts, and found that their ability to perceive the contrasts was moderated by the quality of the vowel that followed the consonant. This finding reinforces the importance of phonological context in speech perception, and suggests that teachers of Arabic to native speakers of English should pay particular attention to the quality of the following vowel when supporting students’ acquisition of Arabic consonants."