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  Individual differences in late bilinguals' L2 phonological processes: From acoustic-phonetic analysis to lexical access

Díaz, B., Mitterer, H., Broersma, M., & Sebastian-Galles, N. (2012). Individual differences in late bilinguals' L2 phonological processes: From acoustic-phonetic analysis to lexical access. Learning and Individual Differences, 22(6), 680-689. doi:10.1016/j.lindif.2012.05.005.

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Item Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-000F-899A-2 Version Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-002B-CC46-1
Genre: Journal Article

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 Creators:
Díaz, Begoña1, Author              
Mitterer, Holger2, Author
Broersma, Mirjam2, Author
Sebastian-Galles, Nuria3, Author
Affiliations:
1Max Planck Research Group Neural Mechanisms of Human Communication, MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Max Planck Society, ou_634556              
2Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics, Nijmegen, the Netherlands, ou_persistent22              
3Brain and Cognition Unit, University Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona, Spain, ou_persistent22              

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Free keywords: Bilingualism; Phonology; Language learning; Speech perception
 Abstract: The extent to which the phonetic system of a second language is mastered varies across individuals. The present study evaluates the pattern of individual differences in late bilinguals across different phonological processes. Fifty-five late Dutch-English bilinguals were tested on their ability to perceive a difficult L2 speech contrast (the English /æ/-/ε/ contrast) in three different tasks: A categorization task, a word identification task and a lexical decision task. As a group, L2 listeners were less accurate than native listeners. However, at the individual level, almost half of the L2 listeners scored within the native range in the categorization task whereas a small percentage scored within the native range in the identification and lexical decision tasks. These results show that L2 listeners' performance crucially depends on the nature of the task, with higher L2 listener accuracy on an acoustic-phonetic analysis task than on tasks involving lexical processes. These findings parallel previous results for early bilinguals, where the pattern of performance was consistent with the processing hierarchy proposed by different models of speech perception. The results indicate that the analysis of patterns of non-native performance can provide important insights concerning the architecture of the speech perception system and the issue of language learnability.

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Language(s): eng - English
 Dates: 2012-05-012012-05-232012-12
 Publication Status: Published in print
 Pages: -
 Publishing info: -
 Table of Contents: -
 Rev. Method: Peer
 Identifiers: DOI: 10.1016/j.lindif.2012.05.005
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Title: Learning and Individual Differences
  Abbreviation : Learn Individ Differ
Source Genre: Journal
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Publ. Info: Greenwich : JAI Press
Pages: - Volume / Issue: 22 (6) Sequence Number: - Start / End Page: 680 - 689 Identifier: ISSN: 1041-6080
CoNE: /journals/resource/1041-6080