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Psycholinguistics and SLA
Transcript of Psycholinguistics and SLA
What is it?
Psycholinguistics and SLA
What brain regions are involved in language processes?
What happens at a linguistic level when there is brain damage? And thus, how do aphasics (language impairment) process language?
How do acquire language?
How do we acquire a second language (L2)?
(Randall, 2007; Hager, 2011)
It tries to answer the following:
Thanks to one of its branches: neurolinguistics, we know now that:
Language is located in the left hemisphere. (Steinberg&Sciriani, 2006)
There is lateralization in terms of functions in the brain,
Certain brain regions are particular involved in language processes, and
Plasticity in the brain allows language acquisition (L1, L2, L3) (Arabski&Wojtaszek, 2010)
Some findings that we owe to psycholinguistics
Regarding the brain
There aren't many conclusive theories...
We're still on the search for:
How we process information
Is it online? Is it a simultaneous activation?
What is the best way to attain proficiency?
What external factors are directly involved with L2 acquisition?
Regarding L2 acquisition
Yes there is a Critical Period Hypothesis that sustains that and L2 cannot be acquired after reaching puberty since all brain plasticity has been lost... (Arabski&Wojtaszek,2010)
Yet there are many reported cases of native-like proficiency in the L2 after reaching puberty. Do you know any?
Most importantly we know: THE MORE YOU USE YOUR L1 TO PROCESS YOUR L2 THE MORE DIFFICULTY: MORE BRAIN REGIONS ARE ACTIVATED!!! WARNING!! (Can et.al. 2013)
So far we know:
Age of acquisition matters: yes, the younger the bettter, but still
Once a high proficiency level is attained, brain processes become similar in the L1 and in the L2, that is, (Perani, 1998)
The more you master the language, the more of an automatic process it becomes!! (Ullman, 2004)
Therefore, what about degree of exposure?
We also know
Age (brain plasticity)
Proficiency (degree of mastery)
Level of exposure, but...
What comes to play on the road to become bilingual?
What type of instruction then? What is the best way to learn?
Input!! Practice==> Intake, Output
STRATEGIES: your brain is not the brain of that of a child... metacognition!
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Can, D. D., Richards, T., & Kuhl, P. (2013). Early gray-matter concentration in infancy predicts later language skills.
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Faruji, L. F. (2012). Neurolinguistics Aspects of Second Language Acquisition.BRAIN. Broad Research in Artificial Intelligence and Neuroscience, 2(4), pp-36.
Hager, M. (2011). Culture, Psychology, and Language Learning. Oxford: Peter Lang.
Perani, D., et. al. (1998). The bilingual brain. Proficiency and age of acquisition of the second language. Brain, 121(10), 1841-1852.
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Randall, M. (2007). Memory, Psychology and Second Language Learning. Amsterdam: John Benjamins Pub.
Schmidt, R. (1993). Awareness and second language acquisition. Annual review of applied linguistics, 13(1), 206-226.
Ullman, M. T. (2004). Contributions of memory circuits to language: The declarative/procedural model. Cognition, 92(1), 231-270.
Xu, F. (2010). The role of input and interaction in second language acquisition.Cross-Cultural Communication, 6(1), 11-17.
M.A. Deida Perea
Lic. Pedagogía del Inglés