-- JoAnnAlvarez - 15 Nov 2012

Sometimes we struggle to pronounce our colleagues' names. Many of the people in our department come from China, where tonal languages, including Mandarin, are spoken. This means that the pitch of a sound and changes in the pitch within a sound determine which word a person is speaking. Although Mandarin has a system of written characters, various systems of writing Mandarin words using the Roman alphabet have been developed. One of these is pinyin. Pinyin uses four tone marks over the vowels in words to indicate which of the four tones should be used in a syllable.** Below are the names of department members written in pinyin along with a pronunciation guide. Some of the sounds in Chinese are not found in English, but I've tried to give the best approximation.

This table is intended for any member of our department whose name is sometimes mispronounced. Please add you name if you would like to. What would be most helpful is to link your name to a mp3 file that gives its pronumciation. The first entry in the table can be used as a template for doing this. One way to create such a file is to call your work phone number, leave your name as a voice-male message, extract the .wav file and transate it to mp3 using a program like iTunes.

Name pinyin Pronunciation*
Test Person   Test Person
Bian Aihua Biàn Àihuá byan eye hwah
Guanhua Chen (Josh) Chén gwahn hwah chun
Chen Qiulan (Heidi) Chén Qīulán chun chyoo lahn
Chen Qingxia (Cindy) Chén Qīngxiá chun ching shyah
Chen Xi (Steven) Chén Xī chun shee
Fan Run   fahn roon/ruun
Han Xue Hán Xuě hahn shwe
Liu Qi Líu lyoo chee
Liu Dandan Líu Dāndān lyoo dahn dahn
Liu Zhouwen Líu Zhōuwén lyoo joh wun
Liu Xulei (Shirley) Líu Xùlěi lyoo shoo lay
Lu Pengcheng Lù Péngchéng loo pung chung
Min Gao   meen gow
Nian Hui Nián Huì nyan hway
Shi Yaping Shī Yǎpíng shr yah peeng
Shyr Yu Shí Yù shr yew
Song Yanna Sòng Yānnà sohng yahn na
Wang Li Wáng Lì wahng lee
Wang Lily Wáng Lì wahng lee
Wu Pingsheng Wǔ Píngshèng woo peeng shung
Xu Meng Xù Méng shoo mung
Ye Fei Yè Fēi yu fay
Yu Chang Yú Chǎng yoo chahng
Zhu Yuwei Zhū Yǔwèi joo yoo way
Zhao Zhiguo (Alex) Zhào Zhìguó jow j gwah
Zhengzheng Tang (Jane)   jungjung tahng
Zhong Xue   johng shwe
Zhou Minchun   joh meenchoon/chuun
* Pronunciation spelling is based on the Wikipedia respelling system explained here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Pronunciation_respelling_key. The letter y is used as a consonant only here. ** Taiwan doesn't use pinyin but instead uses a different system. For simplicity, I've only included Pinyin here, even for names from Taiwan.
Topic attachments
I Attachment Action Size Date Who Comment
TestSoundByte.mp3mp3 TestSoundByte.mp3 manage 51.3 K 15 May 2015 - 11:21 WilliamDupont  
test_sound_byte.msgmsg test_sound_byte.msg manage 40.5 K 15 May 2015 - 09:52 WilliamDupont  
test_sound_byte.wavwav test_sound_byte.wav manage 7.6 K 15 May 2015 - 10:21 WilliamDupont  
Topic revision: r10 - 15 May 2015, WilliamDupont

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