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Revitalizing Endangered Languages

Edited by Justyna Olko & Julia Sallabank

Revitalizing Endangered Languages "This guidebook provides ideas and strategies, as well as some background, to help with the effective revitalization of endangered languages. It covers a broad scope of themes including effective planning, benefits, wellbeing, economic aspects, attitudes and ideologies."

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Academic Paper

Title: Age effects in first language attrition: Speech perception by Korean-English bilinguals
Paper URL:
Author: Charles B. Chang
Email: click here TO access email
Institution: Boston University
Linguistic Field: Applied Linguistics; Language Acquisition; Phonetics; Phonology; Psycholinguistics
Subject Language: English
Abstract: This study investigated how bilinguals’ perception of their first language (L1) differs according to age of reduced contact with L1 after immersion in a second language (L2). Twenty‐one L1 Korean‐L2 English bilinguals in the United States, ranging in age of reduced contact from 3 to 15 years, and 17 control participants in Korea were tested perceptually on three L1 contrasts differing in similarity to L2 contrasts. Compared to control participants, bilinguals were less accurate on L1‐specific contrasts, and their accuracy was significantly correlated with age of reduced contact, an effect most pronounced for the contrast most dissimilar to L2. These findings suggest that the earlier bilinguals are extensively exposed to L2, the less likely they are to perceive L1 sounds accurately. However, this relationship is modulated by crosslinguistic similarity, and a turning point in L2 acquisition and L1 attrition of phonology appears to occur at around age 12.
Type: Individual Paper
Status: Completed
Publication Info: Language Learning, 67(3), 694-733.
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