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    This chapter has been cited by the following publications. This list is generated based on data provided by CrossRef.

    Klimentová, Eva Dočekal, Vít and Hynková, Kristina 2017. Hearing children of deaf parents – a new social work client group?. European Journal of Social Work, Vol. 20, Issue. 6, p. 846.

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    Everatt, John Smythe, Ian Adams, Ewan and Ocampo, Dina 2000. Dyslexia screening measures and bilingualism. Dyslexia, Vol. 6, Issue. 1, p. 42.

    Gathercole, Virginia C. Mueller 1997. The Linguistic Mass/Count Distinction as an Indicator of Referent Categorization in Monolingual and Bilingual Children. Child Development, Vol. 68, Issue. 5, p. 832.

    Carey, Stephen 1997. Language Management, Official Bilingualism, and Multiculturalism in Canada. Annual Review of Applied Linguistics, Vol. 17, Issue. , p. 204.

    Nicoladis, Elena and Genesee, Fred 1996. Word awareness in second language learners and bilingual children. Language Awareness, Vol. 5, Issue. 2, p. 80.

    Parke, Tim 1994. Bilingualism and language awareness in young children. Language Awareness, Vol. 3, Issue. 3-4, p. 209.

    Cummins, Jim 1992. Bilingualism and Second Language Learning. Annual Review of Applied Linguistics, Vol. 13, Issue. , p. 50.

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  • Print publication year: 1991
  • Online publication date: January 2010

8 - Towards an explanatory model of the interaction between bilingualism and cognitive development

Summary

During the past twenty years research has shown, with some degree of consistency, that learning a second language in childhood, either by simultaneous acquisition or in the context of bilingual education, is associated with positive cognitive gains. In both bilingual—monolingual comparisons and in studies using “within-bilingual” designs, children's bilingualism is positively related to concept formation, classification, creativity, analogical reasoning, and visual-spatial skills, to name a few (Diaz, 1983; Hakuta, Ferdman, & Diaz, 1987). In addition, as is evident in several chapters of the present volume, bilingual children have demonstrated a particularly refined awareness and control of the objective properties of language, commonly referred to as metalinguistic skills. Ben-Zeev (1977), for example, found that bilingual children approached linguistic tasks with a special sensitivity to language structure and detail. More recently, Bialystok (1986) has shown that children's bilingualism positively affects their increasing ability to solve problems involving high levels of control of linguistic processing.

Even though we have substantial documentation of the cognitive and metalinguistic advantages of childhood bilingualism, an important issue remains unresolved; namely, researchers have not yet developed and tested the validity of an explanatory model of how or why bilingualism has such positive effects. To date, it is not clear, for example, how bilinguals' metalinguistic skills are related to advantages in cognitive abilities not directly related to language, such as classification or visual spatial skills.

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Language Processing in Bilingual Children
  • Online ISBN: 9780511620652
  • Book DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511620652
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