Evidence against a cognitive advantage in the older bilingual population

Papageorgiou, Andriani, Bright, Peter, Periche-Tomas, Eva and Filippi, Roberto (2019) Evidence against a cognitive advantage in the older bilingual population. Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 72 (6). pp. 1354-1363. ISSN 1747-0226

Accepted Version
Available under the following license: Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial No Derivatives.

Download (351kB) | Preview
Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1177/1747021818796475


Recent evidence has challenged long-standing claims that multi-language acquisition confers long-term advantages in executive function and may protect against age-related cognitive deterioration. We assessed evidence for a bilingual advantage in older monolingual and bilingual residents matched on age, gender and socioeconomic status. A comprehensive battery of tests was administered to measure non-verbal reasoning, working memory capacity, visuo-spatial memory, response inhibition, problem-solving and language proficiency. Analyses revealed comparable performance in both groups, with no significant differences on any task (and the only trend, found for the Tower of London task performance, indicated a monolingual advantage). Overall, therefore, our findings run counter to the bilingual advantage hypothesis. We consider the implications of our study, and offer suggestions for future work in this area.

Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: bilingualism, executive function, working memory, cognitive control, ageing population, bilingual advantage, cognitive reserve
Faculty: ARCHIVED Faculty of Science & Technology (until September 2018)
Depositing User: Professor Peter Bright
Date Deposited: 12 Jul 2018 14:43
Last Modified: 23 Feb 2022 11:41
URI: https://arro.anglia.ac.uk/id/eprint/703401

Actions (login required)

Edit Item Edit Item