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English or Spanish Science Language Articles.
Category-generation performance of bilingual children: the influence of condition, category, and language. Research suggests that young children use a script-based slot-filler strategy to develop categories. Children are reported to develop a taxonomic strategy by about age 8. The purpose of this study was to examine how bilingual (Spanish-English) children used taxonomic versus slot-filler strategies in a category-generation task presented in each language. Results indicated that although younger bilingual children (M age = 5;1) generated approximately equal numbers of items in both conditions, older bilingual children (M age = 6;5) were beginning to demonstrate a taxonomic bias. Furthermore, although bilingual children tended to generate similar numbers of items in each language under the different conditions, comparisons between the two languages indicated that a large proportion (68.40%) of items was unique to either language.
Picture naming in early sequential bilinguals: a 1-year follow-up. In a previous study, a cross-sectional approach was used to investigate developmental changes in basic-level lexical production and cognitive processing in early sequential bilinguals, exploring the effects of age and years of experience during single-language (Spanish or English) and mixed-language (alternating between Spanish and English) picture naming. The current study reports on the performance, 1 year later, of a subgroup of these original study participants (n = 28; mean age = 10.2 years) on the same experimental task. Overall, from Time 1 to Time 2 testing, gains were greater in English than in Spanish and in the high-competition mixed-language processing condition than in the single-language processing condition. These results reinforce previous findings of a shift toward greater strength in L2 with increasing age (and years of language experience), as well as the primary role of cognitive development in control of the dual-language system. In addition, examination of individual performance revealed a complex non-monotonic pattern of L1-L2 change across time within an overall pattern of increasing speed, accuracy, and control of the dual-lexical system.
Building phonotactic knowledge in bilinguals: role of early exposure. Timing and amount of exposure to a 2nd language in the acquisition of phonotactic restrictions was examined in 4 experiments. In Experiments 1 and 2, 10-month-old monolingual and bilingual Catalan-Spanish infants were presented with nonwords that were phonotactically legal or illegal in Catalan and phonotactically illegal in Spanish. Differences between the 4 groups of infants were obtained as a function of language dominance. In Experiments 3 and 4, adult Spanish-Catalan bilinguals were compared with the same materials. Catalan-dominant bilinguals were more accurate than Spanish-dominant bilinguals in their perception of legal sequences; however, they were not more accurate with illegal sequences. The findings suggest a complex correlation between the pattern of preference and the amount and timing of exposure.