Visuo-spatial memory and language acquisition skills of bilinguals with different writing systems

Suárez, Lidia, and Sathiasilan, Shakthi B. (2014) Visuo-spatial memory and language acquisition skills of bilinguals with different writing systems. In: Proceedings of the 3rd Annual International Conference on Cognitive and Behavioral Psychology. pp. 30-34. From: CBP 2014: 3rd Annual International Conference on Cognitive and Behavioral Psychology, 24-25 February 2014, Singapore.

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Abstract

Previous studies have shown that bilinguals who use at least one logographic language (e.g., English-Chinese) outperform bilinguals who use two alphabetic languages (e.g., English-French) in visuo-spatial memory tasks and logographic learning. In the current study, we investigated whether the memory enhancement was due to the use of logographic language or the ability to use two different writing systems. We invited biscriptal English-Chinese (alphabetic-logographic), biscriptal English-Tamil (alphabetic-alphasyllabic), and monoscriptal English-Malay bilinguals (alphabetic-alphabetic) to perform several memory and language learning tasks. The findings suggest that the demanding cognitive processes involved in writing and reading Chinese promote visuo-spatial memory enhancement, and this facilitates the learning of new logographic forms. We conclude that the memory advantage of English-Chinese bilinguals was probably due to the use of Chinese rather than the ability to use two different writing systems.

Item ID: 31473
Item Type: Conference Item (Research - E1)
ISSN: 2251-1865
Keywords: bilingualism; visual memory; spatial memory; auditory memory; foreign language acquisition; logographic language; alphabetic language; alphasyllabic language
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Funders: James Cook University Singapore (JCUS)
Projects and Grants: Grant JCUS/001/2012/LAS
Date Deposited: 17 Nov 2014 06:20
FoR Codes: 17 PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES > 1702 Cognitive Science > 170204 Linguistic Processes (incl Speech Production and Comprehension) @ 50%
17 PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES > 1702 Cognitive Science > 170201 Computer Perception, Memory and Attention @ 50%
SEO Codes: 97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970117 Expanding Knowledge in Psychology and Cognitive Sciences @ 90%
97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970120 Expanding Knowledge in Language, Communication and Culture @ 10%
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