Globalization has increased cross culture population movements, which has resulted in a growing number of multicultural societies, multilingual families, and children who identify as belonging to more than one culture (Diamond, Carlson, & Beck, 2005). Psychologists, linguists, and cognitive neuroscientists have conducted considerable research to distinguish how learning, understanding, and speaking language contribute to an individual’s compatibility with his or her environment (Bialystok, 2010). Past research on language has focused primarily on individuals who speak one language (Yow & Li, 2015); however, as diversity increases over time, many individuals speak two or more languages (Bunge & Zelazo, 2002). This reality has prompted many …show more content…
1). Despite the dictionary definition, the definition of bilingualism was identified as ambiguous and lacked an operational definition (Baker, 2001; Cummins, 1976; Macnamara, 1967). Consequently, defining who is or is not bilingual remained disputable between linguists and researchers. However, several hypotheses were proposed. In the early 1970s, the balance theory of bilingualism was widely accepted. The balance theory explained two languages exist together in a balance, the second language increasing at the expense of the first (Macnamara, 1967). For example, monolingual individuals had one well-filled language balloon in the brain whereas bilinguals would have had two half filled language balloons (Cummins, 1976; Macnamara, 1967). Cummins (1976) expanded on the balance theory and proposed the Separate Underlying Proficiency Model indicating that two languages function separately with restricting amounts of room and without transferring. Since the 1970s, research has presented that adequate neurological resources, cognitive load in the brain, and specific characteristics of multiple languages transfer readily and are interactive (Alatis, 1980). Baker (2001) demonstrated the balance theory of bilingualism with an image of two separate icebergs joined at the base, suggesting ideas originated from a common source when utilizing two or
This trend was also prevalent in the right hemisphere for bilinguals however not seen in monolinguals (x = 56, y = -53, z = 42; Z-score = 3.4; P<0.001). Voxel-based morphometry revealed that overall proficiency correlated negatively with age of acquisition (P<0.01; r=-0.855) and second-language proficiency correlated with grey-matter density in exactly the same left inferior parietal region previously identified by a different study (x = -48, y = -59, z = 46; Z-score = 4.1; P<0.05). (Mechelli, 2004)
Having the ability to speak more than one language influences one’ life deeply. Speaking two or more languages can affect someone from being infants to old age. Bhattacharjee continues with, “The bilingual experience appears to influence the brain from infancy to old age (and there
Bilingualism and multilingualism are well practiced through the World. Despite it being well accepted on other parts of the globe, many areas in the United States tends to turn a cold shoulder to it.. Most education policies concerning bilingual or not based on scientific evidence and research (which has discovered the advantages and disadvantages of bilingualism) but rather pre conceived notions and stigmas when it comes to the practice. After some brief research, I believe we should embrace the "new wave" practices and policies, which are more well informed rather than the past. Researches also need to explore new ways in which the brain retains, recognizes and organizes language learning. Now is the tome to put evidence based practices and
This investigation discusses the question of “Is the brain organized differently in bilingual individuals?”. This question was brought upon living in a bilingual community at school, with both Arabic and English speakers. This essay will demonstrate the brain imaging techniques used to differentiate the monolingual brain from a bilingual brain, research studies, and the positive and negative outcomes toward a bilingual brain. Language constructs our relationship with the world arounds us in the ways we express ourselves, therefore what does it mean to be bilingual and monolingual? Bilingualism refers to an individual’s ability to speak two or more languages fluently even if one language is learned later on in life. However, monolinguals are
Since the early 20th century numerous studies, in psychology as well as linguistics, have been conducted on the effects of bilingualism on cognitive abilities (Saer, 1923; Smith, 1923; Gowan & Torrance, 1965). Until the 1960s there was some consensus among experts about the detrimental effect of bilingualism on cognitive development. However, after the publication of Peal and Lambert’s article on the relation of bilingualism to intelligence, most of these theories were discredited due to methodological flaws (Peal & Lambert, 1962). A majority of the studies conducted before this period did not take into consideration the differences in age, gender, culture, second language proficiency and socio-economic status between the monolingual and bilingual participants. Research conducted thereafter has found largely positive effects of bilingualism on cognitive functions (Landry, 1974; Holtzman, 1980). Recent research in the field has focused on understanding the relationship between bilingualism and specific aspects of cognition, such as inhibitory control, creativity and metalinguistic awareness, as opposed to the earlier studies which tried to associate bilingualism with intelligence. Even though, most studies have found a positive correlation between bilingual proficiency and cognitive benefits, there is still much debate in this area of research (Leikin, 2012). In 1992, Ricciardelli
Bilingualism is known to have a negative and a positive outcome on individuals who are multilingual or bilingual. Around the 21st century at least half of the world’s population are now bilingual .The article The Cognitive Benefits of Being Bilingual discussed the different aspect of bilingualism and how it affects the way our brain process information. Researchers have studied the brain that showed that being multilingual and bilingual “have a better attention and task-switching capacities than monolingual brain” function.
Bilingualism, or the ability to understand and produce two or more languages, is an increasingly common ability in our increasingly diverse world. In the United States alone, there has been a 6% increase in the number of bilingual people in the country from 1990 to 2010, as observed by Hyon Shin and Robert Kaminski (2010). Opinions on the cognitive effects of being bi- or multilingual have changed drastically over the past several decades as well. Not very long ago, it was thought that speaking multiple languages would detract from an individual's cognitive abilities, as well as limiting their vocabularies and competence in either language. Particularly in the case of children, some people tried not to expose their children to more than one language because they thought it would result in language impairments and deficits, leading to poor results in school. However, today there is a growing branch of thought that there are in fact great cognitive benefits to bilingualism, particularly in the area of executive functions.
The benefits of bilingualism is something that is well understood in the literature spawning the term, “the bilingual advantage,” which is supposed to encompass enhanced performance control as well as overall mental flexibility culminating in an overall slower decline in executive function as aging continues. Such claims are well supported by evidence from young to old in a multitude of studies spanning decades. What is just as well understood and researched but less often talked about are the negative effects of bilingualism on the brain. Second language acquisition, while potentially providing some benefits to memory and executive control, negatively impacts vocabulary size and linguistic recall tasks of bilinguals compared to monolinguals resulting in less language and verbal fluency.
In the early and mid-20th century, there was a notion between researchers and the public alike that bilinguals were not equivalent in terms of cognitive abilities when compared to monolinguals. Harsh statements such as the one by Epstein (1995) said that bilingualism was a “social plague” and that it was “a hardship devoid of apparent advantage,” (Yoshioka, 1929), as cited in Hakuta & Diaz (1985). The research conducted in their time concluded, “Bilingualism acted as a handicap that affected a person for their life in terms of cognitive development and intellectual advancement,” (Saer, 1940). However, it should be noted that the early studies that were conducted had many limitations. For example, whether or not the person was actually fluent in their second language was not a criterion in sample collections. In some extreme cases, the extent of one’s bilingualism was measure by where they lived, surnames, and the extremeness of the parents’ foreignness. Another weakness present in the methods implemented by these early researchers was that the social and economic, or socioeconomic state of the subject was not accounted or adjusted for as observed by Mcarthy (1930). She found that the majority of the bilingual children present in these early studies were those of immigrant laborers while the monolinguals
The ability to speak and understand more than one language has several benefits for adolescents and adults, but there are several concerns that arise when children are brought up in a home where two languages are spoken or if they use different languages in different settings. Bilingualism a common speech and language category that people are falling into within the United States. Bilingualism, according to ASHA is, “the use of at least two languages by an individual and is a dynamic and fluid process across a number of domains, including experiences, tasks, topics, and time” (ASHA, 2004).Within bilingualism are two subcategories: simultaneous and sequential bilingualism. Simultaneous bilingualism, “occurs when a young child has had significant and meaningful exposure to two language from birth and, ideally, the child will have equal quality experiences with both languages” (ASHA, 2004). Sequential Bilingualism, occurs when an individual has had significant meaningful exposure to a second language, usually after the age of three and after the first language is well establish. These second language learners are referred to as ‘English Language Learners’ in U.S. schools” (ASHA, 2004). The state of learning two or more languages at once has resulted in several
Languages are what we use to communicate with each other. Without communication there would be no society. Whether or not you are bilingual, that should not indicate discrimination, but for some speaking another language besides English, it makes them vulnerable to be treated unfairly and discriminated against. Although for others, learning English was a gateway to freedom and public identity. For Espada and Rodriguez, both bilingual and well known authors, these problems have affected them throughout their lives. While bilingualism is the ability to speak two languages, for both Espada and Rodriguez, bilingualism is much more than the definition in the dictionary. This current crisis against bilingualism has made it harder for those whose native language is not English.
“Language constitutes us, it gives us meaning and allows us to make meaning, and it develops and abolishes spaces.” (Benjamin, 2002). Critiques of bilingual education continually claim that children can only learn one language at a time after which they are taught a second language (Krashen, 2000). They assert that bilingual education cause confusion among children and limit their intelligence capabilities; they argue that real bilinguals cannot combine their language. Advocates of bilingual education present arguments on its benefits, they suggest that, for many children the process of being literate and studying a new language simultaneously is
Prior to explaining bilingualism, the concept of language must be understood. At a fundamental level, language derives off one’s self expression and culture. Language does not only hold a function to communicate with another person; instead, language gives people an outlet for “not self expression alone but to make oneself understood by others.” (Rodriguez 50-51) Furthermore, one must not forget Newton’s 3rd Law of Motion, which simply translates into ‘each reaction has an equal and opposite reaction.’ that helps denote scientific and psychological views alike.’ Regarding language, as the positive reaction is to the negative reaction, culture and self expression is to ignorance and cultural oppression. Language takes the form as a double edged sword, with the initial edge building connections and the opposite pushing a gap between
Elizabeth Peal and Wallace Lambert published a monograph titled “The Relation of Bilingualism to Intelligence” in 1962. They directed research in Montreal with 10-year-old children where they analyzed the performances of monolinguals to bilingual speakers of French and English on standardized tests of intelligence. Before this study was conducted, bilingualism was thought of negatively because there was concern around bilingual children and the disadvantages of learning two languages at once. Some disadvantages included lower intelligence, a “language handicap”, poor linguistic capabilities, more grammatical errors, reduced vocabulary, among numerous other factors researchers believed to be true. Peal and Lambert’s discoveries were the first research study that contradicted the negative opinions noted previously in research and underlined the positive effects of bilingualism in relation to cognitive development. Studies after Peal and Lambert’s continued to show that bilingualism has more positive, beneficial outcomes rather than focus on the negative ones. These positive outcomes include better cognitive control abilities, improved executive functioning, and protection against cognitive decline. Therefore, knowing two languages is greater than knowing just one.
The term bilingualism refers to the ability of knowing and delivering more than one language. Throughout the years society has evolved and developed in such a way that the majority of the world is now multilingual. Once a up on a time bilingualism was considered harmful to one’s development and IQ. This happened at the beginning of the century, haw ever since then we have conducted numerous researches studies that proves this wrong. Today bilingualism is often seen as a brain-sharpening benefit, a condition that can protect and preserve cognitive function well into old age.