:Prosodic hierarchy:

Pronunciation GB: prəˈsɒdɪk, GA: prəˈsɑdɪk

A model of the phonological organisation of language which has a number of layers, each consisting of units made up exclusively of units on the layer below. This organisation conforms to what is known as the Strict Layer Hypothesis. The highest layer in the hierarchy is the Utterance (U). U is made up of one or more Intonation Phrases (IP), which in turn are made up of one or more Intermediate Phrases (ip). Both of these latter constituents are the domain of well-formed intonation patterns. The details of other layers vary from account to account and may be different in different languages. Other layers which have been posited are (listed in descending order): Accentual Phrase (ap), the domain of a single accent, Foot (ω), the domain of stress assignment and Syllable (σ).