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Bilingualism & Intelligence


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A closer look at cognition and language.

Published in: Education
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Bilingualism & Intelligence

  1. 1. Collaborating with students in Costa Rica, we explore the debate regarding whether being bilingual (or multilingual) increases intelligence and cognitive functioning.<br />Bilingualism and Intelligence<br />
  2. 2. Participants<br />Rachel Cunning (Kansas University)<br />Sally Podany(Kansas University)<br />Erney Vargas (Costa Rica)<br />Javier Mendez (Costa Rica)<br />
  3. 3. Advantages of Being Bilingual<br />Upper hand in the Job Market<br />Improved proficiency in third and fourth languages<br />Higher Intelligence Test Results<br />Improved Cognitive Efficiency (Bialystock, 2011)<br />Increased Ability to Multitask (Bialystock, 2011)<br />Increased “Gray Matter,” in the Brain, decreased risk to Alzheimers (Hitti, 2004)<br />
  4. 4. Arguments Against Increased Cognitive Factors in Bilinguals<br />-Bilingual Children are more likely to come from wealthy families, thus, it is their SES that helps their cognitive abilities, not being bilingual itself.<br />-Some studies have shown that bilingual students have increased verbal abilities, but not necessarily increased IQ.<br />
  5. 5. Let’s hear from an expert…<br />
  6. 6. Web Resources<br /><br /> Summaries of articles on bilingualism and intelligence.<br /><br /> <br /><br /><br /> Both cover the cognitive and linguistic advantages.<br /><br /> Discusses with a scientist some of the cognitive advantages to being bilingual--both for children and for adults.<br /><br /> Article by the American Psychological Association on bilingualism and age-related cognitive changes<br /><br />Webmdarticle on the benefits of being bilingual<br />