The differential roles of paired associate learning in Chinese and English word reading abilities in bilingual children

The differential roles of paired associate learning in Chinese and English word reading abilities... Paired associated learning (PAL) is a critical skill for making arbitrary associations among print, pronunciation and meaning in reading development. Extended from past research of PAL, this study investigated whether PAL operated flexibly to linguistic demands of languages, by examining word reading abilities in Chinese–English bilingual children. One hundred and twenty-one 8-year-old Chinese–English bilingual children in Hong Kong were included. Children were administered nonverbal reasoning and PAL tasks (condition 1: visual-pronunciation PAL pair; condition 2: visual-semantics PAL pair), as well as Chinese and English measures of phonological processing and word reading. Results of hierarchical regression analysis showed that PAL performance contributed to word reading, after the effects of nonverbal reasoning and phonological processing were accounted for. Specifically, visual-semantics PAL predicted Chinese word reading, while visual-pronunciation PAL predicted English word reading. These findings have indicated that visual–verbal PAL and phonological processing represent unique mechanisms important to reading in Chinese and English. The differential roles of visual-pronunciation and visual-semantics mappings suggest cognitive processes in reading acquisition, like PAL, might be flexible in bilinguals. Different mechanisms could be utilized in learning to read various scripts depending on the scripts’ characteristics. Reading and Writing Springer Journals

The differential roles of paired associate learning in Chinese and English word reading abilities in bilingual children

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Springer Netherlands
Copyright © 2014 by Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht
Linguistics; Languages and Literature; Psycholinguistics; Education (general); Neurology; Interdisciplinary Studies
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    Geva, E; Siegel, LS

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