Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
×
Home

Receptive vocabulary differences in monolingual and bilingual adults*

  • ELLEN BIALYSTOK (a1) and GIGI LUK (a2)

Abstract

English receptive vocabulary scores from 797 monolingual and 808 bilingual participants between the ages of 17 and 89 years old were aggregated from 20 studies to compare standard scores across language groups. The distribution of scores was unimodal for both groups but the mean score was significantly different, with monolinguals obtaining higher standard scores than bilinguals. Consistent with previous research, older adults had higher vocabulary scores than younger adults. The results are discussed in terms of the implications for theoretical conceptions of linguistic processing and clinical diagnosis in bilingual populations.

Copyright

Corresponding author

Address for correspondence: Ellen Bialystok, Department of Psychology, York University, 4700 Keele Street, Toronto, Ontario M3J 1P3, Canada ellenb@yorku.ca

Footnotes

Hide All
*

This work was partially supported by grant A2559 from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada and grant MOP57842 from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research to EB. We are grateful to all the past and present members of the Bialystok lab who collected the data and contributed the results to this analysis.

Footnotes

References

Hide All
Bialystok, E., Craik, F. I. M., Klein, R., & Viswanathan, M. (2004). Bilingualism, aging, and cognitive control: Evidence from the Simon task. Psychology and Aging, 19, 290303.
Bialystok, E., Craik, F. I. M., & Luk, G. (2008a). Cognitive control and lexical access in younger and older bilinguals. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, 34, 859873.
Bialystok, E., Craik, F. I. M., & Luk, G. (2008b). Lexical access in bilinguals: Effects of vocabulary size and executive control. Journal of Neurolinguistics, 21, 522538.
Bialystok, E., Luk, G., Peets, K. F., & Yang, S. (2010). Receptive vocabulary differences in monolingual and bilingual children. Bilingualism: Language and Cognition, 13, 525531.
Bijeljac Babic, R., Biardeau, A., & Grainger, J. (1997). Masked orthographic priming in bilingual word recognition. Memory & Cognition, 25, 447457.
Burke, D. M., & Shafto, M. A. (2008). Language and aging. In Craik, F. I. M. & Salthouse, T. A. (eds.), The handbook of aging and cognition (3rd edn.), pp. 373443. New York: Psychology Press.
Costa, A. (2005). Lexical access in bilingual production. In Kroll, J. F. & B De Groot, A. M. (eds.), Handbook of bilingualism: Psycholinguistic approaches, pp. 308325. New York: Oxford University Press.
Delis, D. C., Kaplan, E., & Kramer, J. H. (2001). Verbal fluency subtest of the Delis–Kaplan Executive Function System. San Antonio, TX: The Psychological Corporation.
Gollan, T. H., & Acenas, L. A. (2004). What is a TOT? Cognate and translation effects on tip-of-the-tongue states in Spanish–English and Tagalog–English bilinguals. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, & Cognition, 30, 246269.
Gollan, T. H., Fennema-Notestine, C., Montoya, R. I., & Jernigan, T. L. (2007). The bilingual effect on Boston Naming Test performance. Journal of the International Neuropsychological Society, 13, 197208.
Gollan, T. H., Montoya, R. I., Fennema-Notestine, C., Morris, S. K., (2005). Bilingualism affects picture naming but not picture classification. Memory & Cognition, 33, 12201234.
Gollan, T. H., Montoya, R. I., & Werner, G. (2002). Semantic and letter fluency in Spanish–English bilinguals. Neuropsychology, 16, 562576.
Gollan, T. H., Salmon, D. P., Montoya, R. I., & da Pena, E. (2010). Accessibility of the nondominant language in picture naming: A counterintuitive effect of dementia on bilingual language production. Neuropsychologia, 48, 13561366.
Gollan, T. H. & Silverberg, N. B. (2001). Tip-of-the-tongue states in Hebrew–English bilinguals. Bilingualism: Language and Cognition, 4, 6383.
Hedden, T., Lautenschlager, G., & Park, D. (2005). Contributions of processing ability and knowledge to verbal memory tasks across the adult life-span. The Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology A, 58, 169190.
Ivanova, I., & Costa, A. (2008). Does bilingualism hamper lexical access in speech production. Acta Psychologica, 127, 277288.
Luk, G., de Sa, E., & Bialystok, E. (2011). Is there a relation between onset age of bilingualism and enhancement of cognitive control? Bilingualism: Language and Cognition, 14 (4), 596596.
Luo, L., Luk, G., & Bialystok, E. (2010). Effect of language proficiency and executive control on verbal fluency performance in bilinguals. Cognition, 114, 2941.
McClelland, J. L., & Elman, J. L. (1986). The TRACE model of speech perception. Cognitive Psychology, 18, 186.
Portocarrero, J. S., Burright, R. G., & Donovick, P. J. (2007). Vocabulary and verbal fluency of bilingual and monolingual college students. Archives of Clinical Neuropsychology, 22, 415422.
Ransdell, S. E., & Fischler, I. (1987). Memory in a monolingual mode: When are bilinguals at a disadvantage? Journal of Memory and Language, 26, 392405.
Roberts, P. M., Garcia, L. J., Desrochers, A., & Hernandez, D. (2002). English performance of proficient bilingual adults on the Boston Naming Test. Aphasiology, 16, 635645.
Rosselli, M., Ardila, A., Araujo, K., Weekes, V.A., Caracciolo, V., Padilla, M., & Ostrosky-Solis, F. (2000). Verbal fluency and repetition skills in healthy older Spanish–English bilinguals. Applied Neuropsychology, 7, 1724.
Salthouse, T. A. (1993). Speed and knowledge as determinants of adult age differences in verbal tasks. Journal of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences, 48, 2936.
Seidenberg, M. S., & McClelland, J. L. (1989). A distributed, developmental model of word recognition and naming. Psychological Review, 96, 523568
Strauss, E., Sherman, E. M. S., & Spreen, O. (2006). A compendium of neuropsychological tests: Administration, norms and commentary. New York: Oxford University Press.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Bilingualism: Language and Cognition
  • ISSN: 1366-7289
  • EISSN: 1469-1841
  • URL: /core/journals/bilingualism-language-and-cognition
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Keywords

Metrics

Altmetric attention score

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed