Medindia

X

Knowledge of a Second Language Does Impact the Knowledge of Native Language

by Savitha C Muppala on  August 23, 2009 at 12:41 PM General Health News   - G J E 4
Knowledge of a Second Language Does Impact the Knowledge of Native Language
It is not possible for bilingual people to completely shut off a language,a new study has shown.
Advertisement

Ghent University psychologists Eva Van Assche, Wouter Duyck, Robert Hartsuiker and Kevin Diependaele have found that knowledge of a second language actually has a continuous impact on native-language reading.

Advertisement
For their study, the research team asked 45 Ghent University students, whose native-language was Dutch and secondary language was English, to read several sentences containing control words - plain words in their native-language - and cognates.

Cognates are words that have a similar meaning and form across languages, often descending from the same ancient language; for example, "cold" is a cognate of the German word "kalt" since they both descended from Middle English.

The researchers recorded the students' eye movements, and observed where their eyes paused (fixation locations), as they read the sentences.

The researchers found that the students looked a shorter period of time at the cognates than at the controls.

According to the psychologists, it is the overlap of the two languages that speeds up the brain's activation of cognates, which is why despite not needing to use their second language to read in their native-language, the participants still were unable to simply "turn it off."

Based on their observations, the researchers came to the conclusion that not only is a second language always active, it has a direct impact on reading another language-even when the reader is more proficient in one language than another.

The study has been published in the journal Psychological Science.

Source: ANI
SAV
Advertisement

Post your Comments

Comments should be on the topic and should not be abusive. The editorial team reserves the right to review and moderate the comments posted on the site.
User Avatar
* Your comment can be maximum of 2500 characters
Notify me when reply is posted I agree to the terms and conditions

You May Also Like

Advertisement
View All

More News on: