Intonation test, MCQ

Intonation: MCQ Sample Test 

Compiled by Mohamed Zayed
MA Researcher in English Linguistics

§  Choose the correct answer from a, b, c, or d in the following sentences:
1)     Intonation can be defined as . . .
a.     the rise and fall of speech
b.    the rhythm of speech
c.     the melody and tone of the speech
d.     all of the above

2)    All of the following functions are true of intonation except . . .
a.     intonation helps words to communicate messages and emotions
b.    intonation is emphasizing every word in speech.
c.     intonation is the punctuation of our speech
d.    intonation has an indexical function

3)    If you pronounced the word “yesterday” in a rising intonation, you are most likely expressing . . .
a.     a statement
b.    a preposition
c.     a question
d.    giving answers

4)    If you pronounce the word “Excellent” in a falling intonation, you are most likely expressing . . .
a.     disappointment
b.    cheerfulness
c.     mockery
d.    a & c

5)    A tone-group is a chunk of speech that carries . . .
a.     one and only one tone
b.    multiplicity of tones
c.     one and only one important information
d.     a & c

6)    The following extract consist(s) of how many tone-groups?

Last week, my uncle Freddie came back from France and he was very happy to meet us. Later that afternoon, when he met with us, he gave each of us his present. We were all very happy and pleased.

a.     7
b.    2
c.     8
d.    9

7)    The Tonic-syllable of a tone-group is . . .
a.  the syllable that carries the most significant information
b. the sentence that carries the most significant information
c.  the syllable that carries the primary stress of the sentence
d.  a & c

8)    The other important words that precedes the tonic-syllable are called . . .
a.     the tail of the tone-group
b.    the forehead of the tone-group
c.     the head of the tone-group
d.    b & c

9)    The head of the tone-group . . .
a.     must always be unstressed
b.    must always be stressed
c.     is not necessarily stressed
d.     a & b
10)The tail of a tone-group . . .
a.     is unstressed and follows the tonic syllable
b.    is stressed and precedes the tonic syllable
c.     comes between the head and tonic syllable

d.    must exist in a tone-group


  1. answer for 1st question is what ?

  2. Here are the answers for the quiz:
    1) d
    2) b
    3) c (yes and no questions are usually uttered with rising intonation at the end)
    4) b (mockery and disappointment would end in a riding intonation as if questioning such trait.)
    5) d (one major time, either falling or rising, and one piece of important information, i.e. the tonic syllable)
    6) c (For each pause a tone group is counted. For example, "Last week (pause /) ... My uncle Freddy came back from France (pause /) and ... )
    7) a & c
    8) c (a tone group consists of prehead (if any) + head + tonic syllable + tail)
    9) c
    10) a

  3. 5th question answer what?