Publishing Partner: Cambridge University Press CUP Extra Publisher Login
amazon logo
More Info

New from Oxford University Press!


May I Quote You on That?

By Stephen Spector

A guide to English grammar and usage for the twenty-first century, pairing grammar rules with interesting and humorous quotations from American popular culture.

New from Cambridge University Press!


The Cambridge Handbook of Endangered Languages

Edited By Peter K. Austin and Julia Sallabank

This book "examines the reasons behind the dramatic loss of linguistic diversity, why it matters, and what can be done to document and support endangered languages."

Academic Paper

Title: The Receptive–Expressive Gap in the Vocabulary of Young Second-Language Learners: Robustness and Possible Mechanisms
Author: Todd A. Gibson
Institution: University of Memphis
Author: D. Kimbrough Oller
Institution: University of Memphis
Author: Linda Jarmulowicz
Institution: University of Memphis
Author: Corinna A. Ethington
Institution: University of Memphis
Linguistic Field: Language Acquisition
Subject Language: English
Abstract: Adults and children learning a second language show difficulty accessing expressive vocabulary that appears accessible receptively (L1). We call this discrepancy the receptive–expressive gap. Kindergarten Spanish (L1) – English (L2) sequential bilinguals were given standardized tests of receptive and expressive vocabulary in both Spanish and English. We found a small receptive–expressive gap in English but a large receptive–expressive gap in Spanish. We categorized children as having had high or low levels of English exposure based on demographic variables and found that the receptive–expressive gap persisted across both levels of English exposure. Regression analyses revealed that variables predicting both receptive and expressive vocabulary scores failed to predict the receptive–expressive gap. The results suggest that the onset of the receptive–expressive gap in L1 may have been abrupt. We discuss possible mechanisms underlying the phenomenon.


This article appears IN Bilingualism: Language and Cognition Vol. 15, Issue 1, which you can READ on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .

Add a new paper
Return to Academic Papers main page
Return to Directory of Linguists main page