MultiLingual Minds and Factors Affecting MultiLingual Outcomes

This project will systematically investigate individual language experience factors and their role in shaping variation in linguistic development and outcomes in multilingualism. Individual language experiences differ considerably in multilinguals, leading to performance and ultimate attainment variation in almost all domains of grammar across all modalities of testing. Multilingual outcomes are also shaped by social and contextual factors. We will characterize and quantify multilingualism as a cumulation and continuum of individual experiences and investigate how much correlations between linguistic outcomes and individual language experiences differ for each language of the multilingual speaker, across age groups, domains of grammar, and modalities of testing. By employing a semi-longitudinal methodological design with participants from age 4 to 50+, we will investigate the development and fluidity of multilingual systems, language maintenance, reduction or loss/attrition of language knowledge as well as the correlation between individual language experiences over time and individual linguistic outcomes. By looking at different language populations (simultaneous and sequential multilinguals), we will be able to tease apart the role of changes in language experience in causing delay, reduction, or loss of linguistic knowledge.

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