Linguistic development of bilingual children: the role of cognitive, socio-cultural and individual differences

The emphasis in this area is onthe role of cognitive, socio-cultural and individual differences in bilingual development. The main interests are to trace the developmental trajectory of the linguistic performance in children growing up exposed to more than one language and to determine the role of cognitive and societal (primarily family) factors in shaping of individual differences in linguistic proficiency of bilingual children. This topic includes extensive work on building of assessment materials, including language assessment of relevant linguistic levels as well as extra-linguistic factors. In order to support the bilingual development with the full integration into the educational system, we developed an interactive application for multimedia devices for the acquisition of Italian as a second language.

Link to Materials

Main results to date

The research in this area resulted in both scientific and funded project of technology transfer (interactive application for language learning). Work was supported by the project Early linguistic integration of immigrant children, COST Action IS0804 Language Impairment in a Multilingual Society: Linguistic Patterns and the road to assessment (2009-2013); European Research Funding of Regione Veneto Design, development and testing of interactive technological devices for the acquisition of a second language in preschool age (2014); Linguistic abilities in immigrant’s children funded by the University of Padova 2009-2011(funding of Italian Ministry for the Instruction, Research and University of Padova) and Language Dominance in Bilingual Speakers Percieved as balanced (Piscopia Marie Curie Action: Co-Funding of Regional, National and International Programmes (COFUND), Framework Programme 7).

Selected Publications

Roch, M., Florit, E. & Levorato, M.C. (2016). Narrative Competence of Italian-English Bilingual Children between 5 and 7 Years. Special Issue on Narratives in bilinguals, Applied Psycholinguistics, 37, 49-67.

Magdalena Łuniewska, Ewa Haman, Sharon Armon-Lotem,Bartłomiej Etenkowski, Frenette Southwood, Darinka Anđelković, Elma Blom, Tessel Boerma, Shula Chiat, Pascale Engel de Abreu, Natalia Gagarina, Anna Gavarró, Gisela Håkansson, Tina Hickey, Kristine Jensen de López, Theodoros Marinis, Maša Popović, Elin Thordardottir, Agnė Blažienė, Myriam Cantú Sánchez, Ineta Dabašinskienė, Pınar Eg, Inger-Anne Ehret, Nelly-Ann Fritsche, Daniela Gatt, Bibi Janssen, Maria Kambanaros, Svetlana Kapalková, Bjarke Kronqvist, Sari Kunnari, Chiara Levorato, Olga Nenonen, Siobhán Nic Fhlannchadha, Ciara O’Toole, Kamila Polišenská, Barbara Pomiechowska, Natalia Ringblom, Tanja Rinker, Maja Roch, Maja Savić, Daniela Slančová, Ianthi Maria Tsimpli, Özlem Ünal-Logacev in press). Ratings of Age of Acquisition of 299 words across 25 languages. Is there a cross-linguistic order of words? Behavior Research Methods (DOI 10.3758/s13428-015-0636-6).

Hrzica, G. Bradaric, B., Tadic, E., Goles, A. & Roch, M. (2015). Dominantnost jezika dvojezicnih govornika talijanskog I hrvatskog jezika [Language dominance in bilingual speakers of Italian and Croatian language], Logopedija, 5 (2), 34-40.