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Phonetic variation in bilingual speech: A lens for studying the production–comprehension link

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Abstract

We exploit the unique phonetic properties of bilingual speech to ask how processes occurring during planning affect speech articulation, and whether listeners can use the phonetic modulations that occur in anticipation of a codeswitch to help restrict their lexical search to the appropriate language. An analysis of spontaneous bilingual codeswitching in the Bangor Miami Corpus (Deuchar, Davies, Herring, Parafita Couto, & Carter, 2014) reveals that in anticipation of switching languages, Spanish–English bilinguals produce slowed speech rate and cross-language phonological influence on consonant voice onset time. A study of speech comprehension using the visual world paradigm demonstrates that bilingual listeners can indeed exploit these low-level phonetic cues to anticipate that a codeswitch is coming and to suppress activation of the non-target language. We discuss the implications of these results for current theories of bilingual language regulation, and situate them in terms of recent proposals relating the coupling of the production and comprehension systems more generally.

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... While laboratory studies of codeswitching typically entail manipulations of language imposed by instruction or cues in the materials and generally measure an aspect of production or of comprehension at the level of the word, some work shows a coordination between speaker and listener (e.g., Fricke, Kroll & Dussias, 2016). Importantly, preparation for an anticipated codeswitch can be detectable to the listener from the consequences of the articulatory behavior of the speaker even before the advent of the language switch defined by word choice. ...
... Importantly, preparation for an anticipated codeswitch can be detectable to the listener from the consequences of the articulatory behavior of the speaker even before the advent of the language switch defined by word choice. These results show that not only can bilingual speakers alter phonological aspects of their production prior to shifting lexical choices from one language to another, but bilingual listeners can exploit phonological or morphosyntactic cues of an upcoming codeswitch while comprehending another (Fricke et al., 2016;Guzzardo Tamargo, Valdés Kroff & Dussias, 2016;Shen, Gahl & Johnson, 2020;Valdés Kroff, Dussias, Gerfen, Perrotti & Bajo, 2017). The coordination across conversants and processes is impressive given the locus of a language switch may be distributed so that the phonological and lexical properties of the upcoming language switch do not necessarily arise concurrently. ...
... Aspects of individual speaker experience and the social context in which communication arises also influence the tendency to codeswitch (e.g., Beatty-Martínez, Navarro-Torres, Dussias, Bajo, Guzzardo Tamargo & Kroll, 2019;Declerck & Philipp, 2015;Fricke et al., 2016;Shen et al., 2020;Valdés Kroff et al., 2017). When preparing a response, bilinguals are sensitive to a host of less purely lexical factors such as the language proficiency of the other speaker (Kaan, Kheder, Kreidler, Tomić & Valdés Kroff, 2020;Kapiley & Mishra, 2019), the social context including the conventions for codeswitching in a particular community (Valdés Kroff et al., 2017) and aspects of status (Tenzer & Pudelko, 2015). ...
Article
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Twitter data from a crisis that impacted many English–Spanish bilinguals show that the direction of codeswitches is associated with the statistically documented tendency of single speakers to prefer one language over another in their tweets, as gleaned from their tweeting history. Further, lexical diversity, a measure of vocabulary richness derived from information-theoretic measures of uncertainty in communication, is greater in proximity to a codeswitch than in productions remote from a switch. The prospects of a role for lexical diversity in characterizing the conditions for a language switch suggest that communicative precision may induce conditions that attenuate constraints against language mixing.
... To this end, researchers are concerned with how units (e.g. words, segments) are stored, how speakers mitigate interference from the language not in use [23], and how mutual influence impacts production [13,15]. This study addresses segmental interference-specifically, how measures of information (e.g. ...
... If similar sounds are assumed to be linked (despite non-identical productions), Spanish and English substantially overlap. This assumption was not problematic in pre-vious work on Spanish and English word-final sibilants [6] or word-initial stops [13]. Another reason for using these segments is that given their acoustic characteristics, they are robust under forced alignment. ...
... Using the orthographic transcriptions and dictionary pronunciations, utterances were considered candidates if there was a target segment in either language-7896 utterances fit this search criteria. Utterances were excluded for code-switching (see [13]), disfluencies [4] and the presence of unintelligible speech. Targets were also excluded if they occurred in a function word [3], or a repeated word in the utterance [21]. ...
Conference Paper
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Speakers reduce segments to a greater degree when they are more predictable and frequent. The outcome of this probabilistic reduction varies cross-linguistically-for example, /s/ is more predictable and likely to reduce in Spanish than in English [10]. If probabilistic reduction reflects a speaker's expectations about language, what happens when there is more than one language to contend with? This paper reports on a corpus study of consonant reduction in Spanish-English bilingual speech. Given that bilinguals' languages influence one another, are consonant duration patterns better accounted for when languages are pooled together or kept separate? In a comparison of two linear mixed effect models, fit for pooled-and separate-lexicon models does not significantly differ. More importantly, this study largely fails to find evidence of segmental probabilistic reduction, suggesting a fundamental difference in how probability operates in bilingual speech.
... Moreover, numerous sociolinguistic studies find that CS serves a variety of sociopragmatic purposes (Gumperz, 1982;Myers-Scotton, 1993). Recently, psycholinguists have investigated the neural and cognitive processes underpinning CS, focusing primarily on the processing costs of integration (e.g., Litcofsky & Van Hell, 2017;Olson, 2017) and attenuation of these costs under certain linguistic contexts (e.g., Fricke, Kroll & Dussias, 2016;Guzzardo Tamargo, Valdés Kroff & Dussias, 2016;Valdés Kroff, Dussias, Gerfen, Perrotti & Bajo, 2017). ...
... The onset of the code-switch was briefly delayed compared to the comparable Spanish-only point (mean difference = 22 ms). The delay was the product of natural pronunciation prolongation and corroborates experimental findings from Fricke, Kroll, and Dussias (2016). Using a Spanish-English bilingual corpus, the authors found that speech rate is reliably prolonged prior to code-switches, which in turn aids the processing of code-switches as demonstrated by an experimental study. ...
... Potentially, the slight natural prolongation (∼22 ms) prior to the CS mentioned in the Instructions and audio recordings section is responsible for or contributes to the CS effect on prediction. Previous studies demonstrate that the prolongations prior to code-switches aid their processing (Fricke et al., 2016) and artificially removing phonetic cues can interfere with CS processing (Shen et al., 2020). Therefore, we did not alter the natural pronunciation of the CS in our recordings. ...
Article
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Despite its prominent use among bilinguals, psycholinguistic studies reported code-switch processing costs (e.g., Meuter & Allport, 1999). This paradox may partly be due to the focus on the code-switch itself instead of its potential subsequent benefits. Motivated by corpus studies on CS patterns and sociopragmatic functions of CS, we asked whether bilinguals use code-switches as a cue to the lexical characteristics of upcoming speech. We report a visual world study testing whether code-switching facilitates the anticipation of lower-frequency words. Results confirm that US Spanish–English bilinguals (n = 30) use minority (Spanish) to majority (English) language code-switches in real-time language processing as a cue that a less frequent word would ensue, as indexed by increased looks at images representing lower- vs. higher-frequency words in the code-switched condition, prior to the target word onset. These results highlight the need to further integrate sociolinguistic and corpus observations into the experimental study of code-switching.
... Most studies in the auditory modality have examined sentence-level stimuli. These studies have demonstrated costs when bilinguals listen to an intrasentential language switch compared to when they listen to a single-language sentence (e.g., Adamou & Shen, 2019;Fricke et al., 2016;Liao & Chan, 2016;Olson, 2016a). However, most studies have also identified mitigating factors that can reduce costs. ...
... However, most studies have also identified mitigating factors that can reduce costs. Subtle cues that a code-switch is about to occur, such as reduced speech rate and changes in voice-onset time (Fricke et al., 2016) or differences in pitch contours (Piccinini & Garellek, 2014;Shen et al., 2020), may help listeners to anticipate that a code-switch is coming and therefore to process it more efficiently. When another language switch had already occurred earlier in the sentence, Olson (2016a) did not find costs in processing the second switch. ...
... However, for the code-switched sentences, this fast response strategy may not have given children sufficient opportunity to process and integrate the meaning of the code-switched segment with the rest of the sentence, resulting in more errors in answering the comprehension questions. In addition, the methodological decision to use spliced stimuli that removed subtle phonetic cues that could signal an upcoming codeswitch (e.g., Fricke et al., 2016;Piccinini & Garellek, 2014;Shen et al., 2020) could have made the code-switched sentences even more difficult to process in noise, even though effects were not seen on processing speed. Shen et al. (2020) did not see effects of using spliced stimuli on RTs, but eyetracking data did yield more subtle effects on lexical access in the switched language. ...
Article
Purpose The purpose of the current study was to examine the effects of code-switching on bilingual children's online processing and offline comprehension of sentences in the presence of noise. In addition, the study examined individual differences in language ability and cognitive control skills as moderators of children's ability to process code-switched sentences in noise. Method The participants were 50 Spanish–English bilingual children, ages 7;0–11;8 (years;months). Children completed an auditory moving window task to examine whether they processed sentences with code-switching more slowly and less accurately than single-language sentences in the presence of noise. They completed the Dimensional Change Card Sort task to index cognitive control and standardized language measures in English and Spanish to index relative language dominance and overall language ability. Results Children were significantly less accurate in answering offline comprehension questions about code-switched sentences presented in noise compared to single-language sentences, especially for their dominant language. They also tended to exhibit slower processing speed, but costs did not reach significance. Language ability had an overall effect on offline comprehension but did not moderate the effects of code-switching. Cognitive control moderated the extent to which offline comprehension costs were affected by language dominance. Conclusions The findings of the current study suggest that code-switching, especially in the presence of background noise, may place additional demands on children's ability to comprehend sentences. However, it may be the processing of the nondominant language, rather than code-switching per se, that is especially difficult in the presence of noise.
... Code-switching has been found to incur a processing cost in auditory comprehension. However, listeners may have access to anticipatory phonetic cues to code-switches (Piccinini & Garellek, 2014;Fricke et al., 2016), thus mitigating switch cost. We investigated effects of withholding anticipatory phonetic cues on code-switched word recognition by splicing English-to-Mandarin code-switches into unilingual English sentences. ...
... For instance, Fricke, Kroll and Dussias (2016) report subtle shifts in voice onset time (VOT) before an English-to-Spanish code-switch, while Piccinini and Garellek (2014) report subtle shifts in intonation prior to code-switches in either direction. They further found that bilingual listeners use shifts in VOT and intonation as cues to anticipate code-switches. ...
... Specifically, our study indicated fewer looks toward a spliced code-switched target in the sentence-medial condition, than an unspliced code-switched target in the same condition. This is consistent with what studies of Spanish-English bilingual listeners have found: that bilinguals can use phonetic cues (intonation and VOT) to anticipate an upcoming code-switch (Piccinini & Garellek, 2014;Fricke et al., 2016). In conjunction with these previous findings, our results suggest that while the presence of anticipatory switch cues is facilitatory, the absence of such cues can hinder code-switched recognition. ...
Article
Full-text available
Code-switching has been found to incur a processing cost in auditory comprehension. However, listeners may have access to anticipatory phonetic cues to code-switches (Piccinini & Garellek, 2014; Fricke et al., 2016), thus mitigating switch cost. We investigated effects of withholding anticipatory phonetic cues on code-switched word recognition by splicing English-to-Mandarin code-switches into unilingual English sentences. In a concept monitoring experiment, Mandarin–English bilinguals took longer to recognize code-switches, suggesting a switch cost. In an eye tracking experiment, the average proportion of all participants' looks to pictures corresponding to sentence-medial code-switches decreased when cues were withheld. Acoustic analysis of stimuli revealed tone-specific pitch contours before English-to-Mandarin code-switches, consistent with previous work on tonal coarticulation. We conclude that withholding anticipatory phonetic cues can negatively affect code-switched recognition: therefore, bilingual listeners use phonetic cues in processing code-switches under normal conditions. We discuss the implications of tonal coarticulation for mechanisms underlying phonetic cues to code-switching.
... For example, phonological encoding processes that occur after lexical selection may underlie the dramatic increase in speaking duration (e.g., Bock & Levelt, 1994). Another possibility is the potential contribution of task demands specific to our lab-based task, especially because speaking durations of the length we observe (3.5 s longer than unswitched utterances) are not characteristic of natural speech, though codeswitches are indeed associated with a slowed speaking rate in naturalistic corpora (Fricke, Kroll, & Dussias, 2016). Perhaps speakers strategically approached the task in manner unlike typical speech and interpreted the task as prioritizing producing utterances entirely in Spanish over maintaining fluency. ...
... This is because codeswitching was associated with more difficult contexts. Slowed speech preceding codeswitches is consistent with corpus analyses of codeswitches in spontaneous speech (Fricke et al., 2016). The key question that our work raises is the extent to which the slowing associated with codeswitched trials indexes the cognitive demands of an upcoming switch, or the fact that words and phrases that are inherently more difficult to plan and articulate are more likely to be codeswitched. ...
... To conclude, if language production is defined as a series of choices made by the speaker, the present work illustrates why investigating language production is important, and how gaining a better understanding of the processes that underlie language production can provide insight into broader language phenomena. Fricke, Kroll, and Dussias (2016) found that bilingual persons' speaking durations increase before a codeswitch and that comprehenders exploit these subtle cues to facilitate comprehension. The current work offers insight into how patterns such as these speaking durations arise in the environment as a consequence of constraints on speakers. ...
Article
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Bilingual speakers sometimes codeswitch, or alternate between languages, in a single utterance. We investigated the effect of lexical accessibility of words, defined as the ease with which a speaker retrieves and produces a word, on codeswitching in Spanish-English bilinguals. We first developed a novel sentence-production paradigm to elicit naturalistic codeswitches in the lab. We then predicted items on which speakers were more or less likely to codeswitch as a consequence of the relative lexical accessibility of those items’ labels across a speaker’s two languages. In a Spanish sentence-production task, greater lexical accessibility in English was associated with an increased rate of codeswitching and longer speaking durations on trials on which speakers codeswitched, as well as on trials on which speakers did not codeswitch. Codeswitches were more frequent on trials where speakers likely experienced more competition from the other-language label, suggesting that codeswitching may be a tool that bilingual speakers use to alleviate difficulty associated with cross-language lexical competition. Given findings that comprehenders are able to learn lexical distributions and subtle acoustic cues to predict upcoming codeswitches, the present work suggests that demands on speakers during language production may play a role in explaining how those patterns come to exist in the language environment.
... As in the visual modality, results have been mixed. When listening to sentences that contained a language switch, bilinguals have exhibited processing costs compared to listening to single-language sentences, both in processing speed (e.g., Adamou & Shen, 2017;Fricke, Kroll, & Dussias, 2016;Olson, 2016a) and in evoking ERP components associated with processing difficulties (e.g., Liao & Chan, 2016). However, subtle acoustic cues that distinguish code-switched sentences from single-language sentences, including F0 contours (Piccinini & Garellek, 2014) and slowed speech rate and shifts in voice-onset time (Fricke et al., 2016), have been shown to reduce costs for listeners. ...
... When listening to sentences that contained a language switch, bilinguals have exhibited processing costs compared to listening to single-language sentences, both in processing speed (e.g., Adamou & Shen, 2017;Fricke, Kroll, & Dussias, 2016;Olson, 2016a) and in evoking ERP components associated with processing difficulties (e.g., Liao & Chan, 2016). However, subtle acoustic cues that distinguish code-switched sentences from single-language sentences, including F0 contours (Piccinini & Garellek, 2014) and slowed speech rate and shifts in voice-onset time (Fricke et al., 2016), have been shown to reduce costs for listeners. Code-switches that were more likely to occur in spontaneous code-switching in a given community were also less likely to elicit costs (Adamou & Shen, 2017). ...
... If listening to language switching involves this cooperative mode, then there may not be costs (e.g., Olson, 2016a). Another interpretation, drawing on usage-based models of comprehension (e.g., Production -Distribution -Comprehension account, MacDonald, 2013), is that processing a language switch is only costly if it violates listeners' predictions based on their own production habits (e.g., Adamou & Shen, 2019;Beatty-Martínez & Dussias, 2017;Fricke et al., 2016;Johns et al., 2019). Taken together, past work in adults suggests that listening to code-switched input may impose costs, but there are a variety of potentially mitigating circumstances. ...
Article
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Production studies of language switching have identified costs in the speed and/or accuracy of word production, but it is unclear whether processing costs are experienced by listeners as well. A related question is whether language control during comprehension recruits domain-general cognitive control. The current study examined processing of code-switching in Spanish-English bilingual children (ages 6;0-11;10) using an auditory moving window paradigm. Cognitive control was indexed by the Dimensional Change Card Sort. Children exhibited significant costs in processing speed when listening to code-switched sentences, but no costs in a measure of offline comprehension. The extent to which cognitive control skills moderated processing costs depended on the robustness of the language system: children with higher language skills exhibited a greater moderating effect of cognitive control. Taken together, the findings provide limited support for a role of cognitive control in children's code-switching processing and suggest that the processing costs incurred may be transitory.
... Given that CS is used in very nuanced ways, researchers have been studying how people codeswitch, examining the switch-points of languages syntactically (Poplack, 1980;Solorio and Liu, 2008), prosodically (Fricke et al., 2016), lexically (Kootstra, 2012, pragmatically (Begum et al., 2016), and so forth. Many works have attempted to model code-switching text and speech from a statistical perspective (Garg et al., 2018a,b). ...
... Choice of language when code-switching can also be adapted in dialogues (Bawa et al., 2018). Fricke et al. (2016) further discover that part-of-speech of a CS utterance may impact the following language choice. Our work adds to this field by studying accommodation of language choice for lexical classes. ...
... Whereas past approaches conceptualized variation across samples and/or conditions as deviant or noisy phenomena, recent discoveries point to fundamental interactivity and plasticity in bilingual language learning and processing (Green and Kroll 2019). The emergence of this work has sparked a paradigm shift in the field, resulting in an upsurge of research on individual differences and of comparative studies that seek to exploit variability within and across languages and interactional contexts of language use (for reviews, see de Bruin 2019; Dussias et al. 2019;Fricke et al. 2016;Kroll et al. 2018;Titone and Tiv forthcoming). The changing landscape reflects increased recognition of the complexity of bilingualism as a life experience: bilingualism does not, in itself, result in a particular pattern of response; rather, it is a multidimensional construct that is shaped by individual and contextual factors (Baum and Titone 2014;DeLuca et al. 2020;Luk and Bialystok 2013;Zirnstein et al. 2019). ...
... A second source of evidence comes from research on language use in an L2-immersion context (for reviews see DeLuca et al. 2020;Fricke et al. 2016;Kroll et al. 2018;Kroll et al. 2021;Zirnstein et al. 2019). L2-immersion contexts provide a unique opportunity for examining the dynamic interplay between languages when bilinguals have restricted access to the L1. ...
Article
Full-text available
Increasing evidence suggests that bilingualism does not, in itself, result in a particular pattern of response, revealing instead a complex and multidimensional construct that is shaped by evolutionary and ecological sources of variability. Despite growing recognition of the need for a richer characterization of bilingual speakers and of the different contexts of language use, we understand relatively little about the boundary conditions of putative "bilingualism" effects. Here, we review recent findings that demonstrate how variability in the language experiences of bilingual speakers, and also in the ability of bilingual speakers to adapt to the distinct demands of different interactional contexts, impact interactions between language use, language processing, and cognitive control processes generally. Given these findings, our position is that systematic variation in bilingual language experience gives rise to a variety of phenotypes that have different patterns of associations across language processing and cognitive outcomes. The goal of this paper is thus to illustrate how focusing on systematic variation through the identification of bilingual phenotypes can provide crucial insights into a variety of performance patterns, in a manner that has implications for previous and future research.
... Cross-linguistic co-activation is a similar phenomenon that occurs when a listener has knowledge of more than one language. For example, a Spanish-English bilingual who hears the English word leaf may also co-activate book because the Spanish label for book (libro) is phonemically similar at the onset to leaf (Fricke, Kroll, & Dussias, 2016). Eye-tracking studies have been invaluable to the field of auditory processing, and have led to insights both for monolingual and bilingual populations (e.g. ...
... Since both groups were currently residing in the US, it is likely that the Spanish-L1 bilinguals had more experience with everyday bilingualism. In fact, maintaining a certain level of activation of both languages may be beneficial to this group of bilinguals if they are often in environments where they must switch between their two languages (Fricke et al., 2016). In contrast, the Spanish-L2 bilinguals were likely not in situations where maintaining activation of both languages would be beneficial. ...
Article
Activation of both of a bilingual’s languages during auditory word recognition has been widely documented. Here, we argue that if parallel activation in bilinguals is the result of a bottom-up process where phonetic features that overlap across two languages activate both linguistic systems, then the robustness of such parallel activation is in fact surprising. This is because phonemes across two different languages are rarely perfectly matched to each other in phonetic features. For instance, across Spanish and English, a “voiced” stop is realized in phonetically-distinct ways, and therefore, words that begin with voiced stops in English do not in fact fully overlap in phonetic features with words in Spanish. In two eye-tracking experiments using a visual world paradigm, we examined the effect of a phonemic match (English /b/ matched to Spanish /b/) vs. a phonetic match (English /b/ matched to Spanish /p/) on cross-linguistic co-activation (English words co-activating Spanish) in Spanish L1 and in Spanish L2 speakers. We found that while phonemic matching induced co-activation in both Spanish L1 and Spanish L2 speakers, phonetic matching did not. Together, these results indicate that co-activation of two languages in bilinguals may proceed through activation of categorical phonemic information rather than through activation of phonetic features.
... Broadly speaking, much of the early work on code-switching indicates that, just like in task switching (Monsell, 2003) and cued-language switching (Meuter and Allport, 1999), integrating code-switches in real-time processing leads to greater switch costs relative to unilingual processing (Altarriba et al., 1996;Litcofsky and Van Hell, 2017). Nevertheless, recent available literature has revealed that switch costs may be attenuated under certain social or linguistic contexts (Fricke et al., 2016;Guzzardo Tamargo et al., 2016;Beatty-Martínez and Dussias, 2017;Valdés Kroff et al., 2018). One plausible account for the discrepancy between the ubiquity of code-switching in bilingual speech and the cognitive costs of its integration in comprehension is its unexpectancy in lab-based studies. ...
... The current psycholinguistic studies of code-switching highlight three broad themes of study: (1) Its relationship to other switching phenomena such as cued-language switching (e.g., Meuter and Allport, 1999;Gollan and Ferreira, 2009) and non-linguistic switching tasks (e.g., Monsell, 2003); (2) whether the integration of code-switching in production and comprehension leads to processing costs (e.g., Ruigendijk et al., 2016;Beatty-Martínez and Dussias, 2017;Litcofsky and Van Hell, 2017;Fernandez et al., 2019); and (3) the cognitive and grammatical processes that help bilinguals rapidly integrate code-switched speech in production and comprehension (e.g., Kootstra et al., 2012;Fricke et al., 2016;Guzzardo Tamargo et al., 2016;Valdés Kroff et al., 2017;Gullifer and Titone, 2019;Adler et al., 2020). These three themes are inter-related in that the natural parallel between general switching behavior and the robust switch costs reported from the cued-language switching paradigm leads to the logical prediction that code-switching should similarly evince costly integration. ...
Article
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Prior studies using the event-related potential (ERP) technique show that integrating sentential code-switches during online processing leads to a broadly distributed late positivity component (LPC), while processing semantically unexpected continuations instead leads to the emergence of an N400 effect. While the N400 is generally assumed to index lexico-semantic processing, the LPC has two different interpretations. One account suggests that it reflects the processing of an improbable or unexpected event, while an alternative account proposes sentence-level reanalysis. To investigate the relative costs of semantic to language-based unexpectancies (i.e., code-switches), the current study tests 24 Spanish-English bilinguals in an ERP reading study. Semantically constrained Spanish frames either varied in their semantic expectancy (high vs. low expectancy) and/ or their language continuation (same-language vs. code-switch) while participants' electrophysiological responses were recorded. The Spanish-to-English switch direction provides a more naturalistic test for integration costs to code-switching as it better approximates the code-switching practices of the target population. Analyses across three time windows show a main effect for semantic expectancy in the N400 time window and a main effect for code-switching in the LPC time window. Additional analyses based on the self-reported code-switching experience of the participants suggest an early positivity linked to less experience with code-switching. The results highlight that not all code-switches lead to similar integration costs and that prior experience with code-switching is an important additional factor that modulates online processing.
... Code-switching has been found to incur a processing cost in auditory comprehension. However, listeners may have access to anticipatory phonetic cues to code-switches (Piccinini & Garellek, 2014;Fricke et al., 2016), thus mitigating switch cost. We investigated effects of withholding anticipatory phonetic cues on code-switched word recognition by splicing English-to-Mandarin code-switches into unilingual English sentences. ...
... that bilinguals can use phonetic cues (intonation and VOT) to anticipate an upcoming code-switch (Piccinini & Garellek, 2014;Fricke et al., 2016). In conjunction with these previous findings, our results suggest that while the presence of anticipatory switch cues is facilitatory, the absence of such cues can hinder code-switched recognition. ...
Preprint
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Code-switching has been found to incur a processing cost in auditory comprehension. However, listeners may have access to anticipatory phonetic cues to code-switches (Piccinini & Garellek, 2014; Fricke et al., 2016), thus mitigating switch cost. We investigated effects of withholding anticipatory phonetic cues on code-switched word recognition by splicing English-to-Mandarin code-switches into unilingual English sentences. In a concept monitoring experiment, Mandarin-English bilinguals took longer to recognize code-switches, suggesting a switch cost. In an eye tracking experiment, the average proportion of all participants' looks to pictures corresponding to sentence-medial code-switches decreased when cues were withheld. Acoustic analysis of stimuli revealed tone-specific pitch contours before English-to-Mandarin code-switches, consistent with previous work on tonal coarticulation. We conclude that withholding anticipatory phonetic cues can negatively affect code-switched recognition: therefore, bilingual listeners use phonetic cues in processing code-switches under normal conditions. We discuss the implications of tonal coarticulation for mechanisms underlying phonetic cues to code-switching.
... The delay was the product of natural pronunciation prolongation and corroborates experimental findings from Fricke, Kroll, and Dussias (2016). Using a Spanish-English bilingual corpus, the authors found that speech rate is reliably prolonged prior to code-switches, which in turn aids the processing of code-switches as demonstrated by an experimental study. ...
... Previous studies demonstrate that the prolongations prior to code-switches aid their processing (Fricke et al., 2016) and artificially removing phonetic cues can interfere with CS processing (Shen et al., 2020). Therefore, we did not alter the natural pronunciation of the CS in our recordings. ...
Preprint
Full-text available
Despite its prominent use among bilinguals, psycholinguistic studies reported code-switch processing costs (e.g., Meuter & Allport, 1999). This paradox may partly be due to the focus on the code-switch itself instead of its potential subsequent benefits. Motivated by corpus studies on CS patterns and sociopragmatic functions of CS, we asked whether bilinguals use code-switches as a cue to the lexical characteristics of upcoming speech. We report a visual world study testing whether code-switching facilitates the anticipation of lower-frequency words. Results confirm that US Spanish-English bilinguals (n = 30) use minority (Spanish) to majority (English) language code-switches in real-time language processing as a cue that a less frequent word would ensue, as indexed by increased looks at images representing lower-vs. higher-frequency words in the code-switched condition, prior to the target word onset. These results highlight the need to further integrate sociolinguistic and corpus observations into the experimental study of code-switching.
... Most prior work has focused on phonologically similar yet phonetically distinct sounds, as with the comparison between initial voiceless stops in English (long-lag) and Spanish (short-lag). Despite substantial phonetic differences, these sounds are clearly linked [8,9,10,11]. The studies cited here all examine initial voice-onset time (VOT) for bilinguals who speak English and a language with a different initial voicing contrast (e.g., Spanish) and demonstrate convergence in two ways. ...
... In both cases, evidence of crosslinguistic influence (CLI) arises from comparing bilinguals to monolinguals. Corpus research demonstrates that Spanish-English bilinguals produce shorter, more Spanish-like VOT in the lead up to an English-to-Spanish code switch [8,12]. The studies mentioned here focus on VOT-a small subset of the CLI literature. ...
... Cross-language interference in the form of an accidental deviation from the target language is evident at this time because the inhibitory control may fail (Festman, 2012). Cognitive control helps language users to suppress unwanted information (e.g., lexical items) from the non-target languages but it cannot prevent infiltration of fine-grained features (e.g., acoustic attributes) (Fricke, Kroll, & Dussias, 2016), which is indicative of the permeability of the interlanguage boundaries. The performance of the cognitive control will improve with age if the children regularly use both languages, and show a significant gain in the proficiency of the second language (Bialystok & Viswanathan, 2009;Russelli, Ardila, Lalwani, & Velez-Uribe, 2016). ...
Preprint
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The paper examines the roles of cognitive control in multilingual speakers and implications have been drawn for language in education policy.
... Even words that share the same coarse-grained phonemic units across languages will generally be pronounced in such a way as to make the intended language clear, i.e., cognates and interlingual homophones will be realized with different "accents" depending on the language being spoken. The empirical record is quite mixed, however, with a handful of studies reporting that participants could take advantage of such language-specific phonetic cues (Schulpen et al., 2003;Ju and Luce, 2004;Fricke et al., 2016), and others finding they could not (Lagrou et al., 2011;McDonald and Kaushanskaya, 2020). Critically for the present study, even if some participants are capable of exploiting language-specific cues when listening conditions are favorable, the ability to do so should be greatly reduced in the presence of competing noise as a result of energetic and/or informational masking (Mattys et al., 2014). ...
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Previous research has shown that as the level of background noise increases, auditory word recognition performance drops off more rapidly for bilinguals than monolinguals. This disproportionate bilingual deficit has often been attributed to a presumed increase in cross-language activation in noise, although no studies have specifically tested for such an increase. We propose two distinct mechanisms by which background noise could cause an increase in cross-language activation: a phonetically based account and an executive function-based account. We explore the evidence for the phonetically based account by comparing cognate facilitation effects for three groups of native English listeners (monolinguals, late (L2) learners of Spanish, and heritage Spanish speakers) and four noise conditions (no noise, speech-shaped noise, English two-talker babble, and Spanish two-talker babble) during an auditory lexical decision task in English. By examining word recognition in the dominant language, the role of language control mechanisms is minimized, and by examining three different types of competing noise, the role of energetic vs. informational masking can be assessed. Contrary to predictions, we find no evidence that background noise modulates cross-language activation; cognate facilitation is constant across the four noise conditions. Instead, several indices of word recognition performance are found to correlate with aspects of linguistic experience: (1) The magnitude of the cognate facilitation effect is correlated with heritage listeners’ self-ratings of Spanish proficiency; (2) Overall noise deficits are marginally larger for heritage listeners with lower English vocabulary scores; (3) Heritage listeners’ Spanish self-ratings predict their magnitude of informational masking; (4) For all bilinguals, the degree of masking incurred in both English and Spanish two-talker babble is correlated with self-reported daily exposure to Spanish; and (5) The degree of masking incurred by Spanish babble is correlated with Spanish vocabulary knowledge. The results enrich our understanding of auditory word recognition in heritage speakers in particular and provide evidence that informational masking is most subject to modulation due to variation in linguistic experience. It remains to be seen whether cross-language activation is modulated by noise when the target language is the less dominant one.
... The results of these studies suggest that the activation of non-target phonological representations when bilinguals pronounce cognate items interferes with the acoustic realization of sounds in the target language, enhancing crosslinguistic influence in bilingual speech. And as shown specifically for voiceless stops, the VOTs of cognate words are subject to a stronger phonological influence from the non-target language than non-cognates (Amengual, 2012;Flege and Munro, 1994;Fricke et al., 2016;Goldrick et al., 2014;Jacobs et al., 2016). As Goldrick et al. (2014) explain, "the activation of non-target language representations for cognates will cascade to phonetic processes, enhancing the degree to which phonetic properties of the non-target language intrude during production" (p. ...
Article
The present study examines the acoustic realization of the English, Japanese, and Spanish /k/ in the productions of two groups of English-Japanese bilinguals [first language (L1) English-second language (L2) Japanese and L1 Japanese-L2 English] and one trilingual group [L1 Spanish-L2 English-third language (L3) Japanese]. With the analysis of voice onset time (VOT) as a proxy for the degree of cross-linguistic influence in each language, this experiment compares the production patterns of L2 and L3 learners of Japanese and explores the effects of language mode and cognate status on the speech patterns in each of the languages of these bilingual and trilingual individuals. By manipulating the degree of activation of the target and non-target language(s) with the use of cognates and non-cognates in monolingual, bilingual, and trilingual experimental sessions, this study investigates static as well as transient phonetic influence. Even though these bilingual and trilingual speakers produce language-specific VOT patterns for each language, the acoustic analyses also reveal evidence of phonetic convergence as a result of language mode and cognate status. These results show that trilingual speakers are able to maintain language-specific phonological categories in their L1, L2, and L3, overcoming long-term (static) traces of one language influencing the other, despite evidence of short-term (dynamic) cross-linguistic influence.
... Prior research in both perception and production suggests that while some aspects of voice variability differ for linguistic reasons, other talker-indexical features remain constant across languages, and still others can be influenced by both linguistic and non-linguistic factors. That bilingual listeners are sensitive to this information signals its importance [5,6]. ...
... Bilinguals in the integrated context (n ϭ 34, 31 females) were recruited at the University of Puerto Rico, a predominantly Spanishspeaking context but where English is widely used in education, media, and other societal domains (see Figure 1), and codeswitching among bilinguals is very common (Beatty-Martínez, 2019;Casas, 2016;Guzzardo Tamargo, Loureiro-Rodríguez, Acar, & Vélez Avilés, 2018;Pousada, 2017). Bilinguals in the varied context (n ϭ 31, 25 females) were from Hispanic countries who had moved to the United States during childhood or adolescence and were raised in established Spanish-English codeswitching communities in the United States (Fricke, Kroll, & Dussias, 2016;Guzzardo Tamargo, Valdés Kroff, & Dussias, 2016;Poplack, 1980;Valdés Kroff, Dussias, Gerfen, Perrotti, & Bajo, 2017). At the time of testing, participants in this group were students at Pennsylvania State University in State College, Pennsylvania, a predominantly English-speaking environment where the Hispanic population is only 4.4% (U.S. Census Bureau, 2015). ...
Article
Proficient bilinguals use two languages actively, but the contexts in which they do so may differ dramatically. The present study asked what consequences the contexts of language use hold for the way in which cognitive resources modulate language abilities. Three groups of speakers were compared, all of whom were highly proficient Spanish-English bilinguals who differed with respect to the contexts in which they used the two languages in their everyday lives. They performed two lexical production tasks and the "AX" variant of the Continuous Performance Task (AX-CPT), a nonlinguistic measure of cognitive control. Results showed that lexical access in each language, and how it related to cognitive control ability, depended on whether bilinguals used their languages separately or interchangeably or whether they were immersed in their second language. These findings suggest that even highly proficient bilinguals who speak the same languages are not necessarily alike in the way in which they engage cognitive resources. Findings support recent proposals that being bilingual does not, in itself, identify a unique pattern of cognitive control. An important implication is that much of the controversy that currently surrounds the consequences of bilingualism may be understood, in part, as a failure to characterize the complexity associated with the context of language use. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2019 APA, all rights reserved).
... Finally, native speakers of code-switching varieties (i.e., speakers whose native language experience is characterized by code-switching) have also been reported to use distributional regularities (e.g., knowledge of the acceptability of particular types of code-switches) in language processing (Beatty-Martinez & Dussias, 2017;Fricke, Kroll, & Dussias, 2016;Guzzardo Tamargo, Valdés Kroff, Dussias, 2016;Valdés Kroff, Dussias, Gerfen, Perrotti, & Bajo, 2017). In sum, these studies suggest that (at least some) patterns of systematic variation found in production have correlates in processing, with faster processing of certain variants over others, particularly in linguistic or social contexts, where those variants are more frequent in production. ...
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The current study investigates cross-linguistic influence of second language (L2) learning on native language (L1) processing of morphosyntactic variation in proficient L2 learners immersed in their L1. Despite Spanish pre-and postverbal clitic pronoun positions being grammatical in complex verb phrases, preferences of use have been well attested in natu-ralistic language production. To examine whether those preferences obtain for comprehension in monolinguals, as well as how those preferences might be modulated by learning an L2 with fixed pronoun positions, we administered a self-paced reading experiment to 20 Spanish monolinguals as well as 22 proficient learners English (L1 Spanish). The results of a Bayesian mixed effects regression analysis suggest that preferences in production are echoed in comprehension-but only for the monolingual group. We find support for facilitation in the bilingual group precisely where both languages overlap, as well as evidence that bilinguals may not use clitic position as a reliable cue at all. We interpret the results as evidence that learning an L2 that lacks variation for a particular feature may lead to reduced sensitivity to that feature as a cue in an analogous L1 structure. We situate these results in an experience-based, shared-syntax account of language processing.
... When reading aloud sentences that contain switches (which participants know in advance), some studies have found increased non-native accents (Bullock et al., 2006;Šimáčková and Podlipskỳ, 2015) whereas others have reported no systematic effects, reduction in non-native accents, or consistent changes across all segments (e.g., VOTs are lengthened in all languages Amengual et al., 2019;Grosjean and Miller, 1994;López, 2012;Šimáčková and Podlipskỳ, 2018). Other studies have found increased non-native accents when participants are forced to unexpectedly switch in picture naming (Goldrick et al., 2014;Olson, 2013;Tsui et al., 2019, andin spontaneous codeswitching Balukas andKoops, 2015;Fricke et al., 2016; but c.f. Piccinini and Arvaniti, 2015). ...
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Speakers learning a second language show systematic differences from native speakers in the retrieval, planning, and articulation of speech. A key challenge in examining the interrelationship between these differences at various stages of production is the need for manual annotation of fine-grained properties of speech. We introduce a new method for automatically analysing voice onset time (VOT), a key phonetic feature indexing differences in sound systems cross-linguistically. In contrast to previous approaches, our method allows reliable measurement of prevoicing, a dimension of VOT variation used by many languages. Analysis of VOTs, word durations, and reaction times from German-speaking learners of Spanish (Baus et al., 2013) suggest that while there are links between the factors impacting planning and articulation, these two processes also exhibit some degree of independence. We discuss the implications of these findings for theories of speech production and future research in bilingual language processing.
... When sufficient cues as to the presence of the nontarget language are introduced, comprehenders may increase the gain of the nontarget language enough to process a code switch without as much difficulty. Indeed, one recent study demonstrated that the presence of subtle, ecologicallyvalid phonological cues signaling an upcoming code switch reduced switch costs in speech comprehension compared to unexpected code switches that were not preceded by these types of cues (Fricke et al., 2016). Thus, comprehenders appear to employ a proactive gain control mechanism to dynamically zoom in and out of each language according to precise contextual cues. ...
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Prominent models of bilingual visual word recognition posit a bottom-up nonselective view of lexical processing with parallel access to lexical candidates of both languages. However, these accounts do not accommodate recent findings of top-down effects on the relative global activation level of each language during bilingual reading. We conducted two eye-tracking experiments to systematically assess the degree of accessibility of each language in different global language contexts. When critical words were presented overtly in Experiment 1, code switches disrupted reading early during lexical processing, but not as much as pseudowords did. Participants zoomed out of the target language with increasing exposure to language switches. In Experiment 2, a monolingual language context was created by presenting critical words covertly as parafoveal previews. Here, code-switched words were treated like pseudowords, and participants remained zoomed in to the target language throughout the experiment. Switch direction analyses confirmed and extended these interpretations to provide further support for the role of global language control on lexical access, above and beyond effects due to proficiency differences across languages. Together, these data provide strong evidence for dynamic top-down adjustment of the degree of language selectivity during bilingual reading.
... Consistently, in spontaneous speech, switch costs were also typically paid before switch words were produced. For example, Fricke et al. (2016) divided the Bangor Miami Corpus into a series of "utterances" that consist of one main clause in each and measured the average syllable production duration of each utterance. In the corpus, bilinguals may switch in both directions, and the results showed significantly longer syllable production duration in utterances before language switching occurred in general. ...
Article
Spanish-English (Experiments 1–2) or Chinese-English (Experiment 3) bilinguals described arrays of moving pictures in English that began with a complex or a simple phrase (e.g., “[The shoe and the mesa/桌子] moved above the cloud” vs. “[The shoe] moved above the mesa/桌子 and the cloud”). Bilinguals were trained to name the second picture in English for half the objects (e.g., “table”) and Spanish/Chinese (e.g., “mesa”/“桌子”) the other half. In complex-initial sentences, production durations of “shoe” and “and” were longer on switch than nonswitch trials; in simple-initial sentences, in Experiments 1–2, speech rate was not affected by switching until “mesa” was produced, and in Experiment 3 not until “above” was produced. Thus, bilinguals paid language switch costs just before or just as they started to produce a phrase with a language switch in it, suggesting that bilinguals complete phrasal planning in the default language before switching to the nondefault language.
... How might these lab-based studies examining switching at the lexical level align with studies examining spontaneous production? In a similar study examining speech rate during spontaneous language mixing, Fricke, Kroll, & Dussias, 2016 found that articulation rate, a measure which excludes pauses, decreased just before single-word insertions of one language into the other. This localized reduction in articulation rate parallels the persistence of switch costs even in voluntary cued language-switching studies. ...
Article
A common practice often attested in bilingual and multilingual communities the world over is the combination of languages within a single utterance or conversation, a practice known as codeswitching. While sociolinguistic studies of spontaneous codeswitching have demonstrated its structure and systematicity, psycholinguistic approaches have focused on the cognitive mechanisms underlying language switching, most often at the lexical level. In the present study, we seek to investigate these mechanisms using spontaneous codeswitching from an established community of Spanish-English bilinguals in northern New Mexico. Focusing on the clausal rather than the lexical level, we find that global speech rates are fastest when bilinguals codeswitch compared to speaking only one language at a time. These results point to codeswitching as a unique discourse mode that these bilinguals use to facilitate production and suggests that what may appear costly at one level may be beneficial at another.
... Research shows that comprehension and production are: 1) separated, meaning nonexistence of influences in their representations and processes; 2) separable, meaning these representations and processes are shared and they commune under certain circumstances; and 3) inseparable, meaning these processes and representations are shared and indivisible (Meyer et al., 2016). While there is no evidence thus far on the nature of reading and writing as cognitive activities with separate and individual processes and representations, there is ample evidence on confluences between comprehension and production (Buz et al., 2016;Fricke et al., 2016;Guzzardo Tamargo et al., 2016;Hsiao & MacDonald, 2016;Kittredge & Dell, 2016;Zamuner et al., 2016). ...
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Background Reading and writing are both fundamental activities for successful learning. However, little is known about the effect of reading comprehension performance on writing, as well as the pedagogical guidelines that can be drawn from this influence. Method Thus, the purpose of the present investigation was to examine the influence of performance in reading comprehension, distinguishing between poor and proficient readers (N = 105), who were enrolled in four eighth‐grade classes between the ages of 12 and 14, on the writing of narrative and expository texts. Results Results revealed that proficient readers outperformed poor readers on objective measures of text production and informative/expository texts. Additionally, regression models demonstrated that proficient readers relied more on deeper aspects of reading and writing such as inferential skills, whereas poor readers tended to focus on superficial aspects of texts, or what Kintsch referred to as text‐base, and appeared to perform better in reading and writing tasks related to narratives compared to information‐based, expository texts. Conclusion These results support the theoretical perspectives of Kintsch's construction–integration model and Otero's regulation model regarding the relation between reading, writing and mental representations. Highlights What is already known about this topic • Little is known about the relation between aspects of reading and writing. • Effective readers and writers need to slow their processing to develop a clear mental model of texts. • Clear mental models of texts allow readers to invoke prior knowledge to fill comprehension gaps in their reading and writing process. What this paper adds • Reading and writing are related processes to the extent that effective readers also tend to be effective writers. • Poor and proficient readers exhibit distinct writing profiles when producing narrative or expository texts. Implications for theory, policy or practice • Proficient readers and writers rely on deeper, higher order processes during reading and text production than poor readers, who rely on superficial aspects. • Educational interventions should focus on both reading comprehension and writing production to be most effective.
... The code-switched instructions were naturally pronounced with a slight prolongation before the CS onset compared to the Spanish version (mean difference = 22 ms). We left this delay unchanged, as slight delays have been found to precede code-switches in bilingual discourse and aid the processing of a CS (Fricke et al., 2016). Taking these cues out can make CS processing more difficult (Shen et al., 2020). ...
Chapter
Monolinguals use various linguistic phenomena to guide prediction while comprehending. For bilinguals, the richer linguistic landscape provides additional resources. Code-switches (CS) are a particularly salient event which could play a role in bilingual prediction. Despite their ubiquity and diverse functions, experimental research has focused on CS processing costs, largely in comprehension (Litcofsky & Van Hell 2017). We argue that, despite apparent integration costs, code-switching can facilitate subsequent language processing, due to natural code-switching patterns. We illustrate this approach with two eye-tracking studies suggesting that code-switches are used as a cue that a less frequent or negative word follows. These studies underscore the need to integrate socio-pragmatic and corpus-modeling observations with experimentation to reach a comprehensive understanding of CS processing (Myers-Scotton, 2006).
... A phoneme is the smallest phonetic unit according to the natural features of utterance and is the basic component of a word (Daube et al., 2019;Fricke et al., 2016;Grainger et al., 2003;Mesgarani et al., 2014;Morais, 2021;Stevenson et al., 2017). The theory of phonological encoding (Coltheart et al., 1979;Dell, 1986Dell, , 1988Levelt et al., 1999;Qu et al., 2012Qu et al., , 2020 considers the importance of phonemes as units during word production in which information about pronunciation is retrieved from the mental lexicon in phonemic units (Qu et al.). ...
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Aims: Cross-language interference studies of language control mainly focus on the lexical level, whereas language control may occur at the smallest unit phonemic level of language. In the present study, we examined the role of language control during cross-language phoneme processing. Design: Participants used one language to name pinyin or alphabet in the single-language blocks, and they used two languages for naming in the mixed-language blocks. Data and Analysis: Using a linear mixed-effects model, we built models for mixing costs and switching costs based on reaction times (RTs) and accuracy. Findings: Switching between Chinese (L1) and English (L2) phonetic symbols revealed both mixing and switching costs. Originality: The findings suggest that switching of cross-language phonemes requires not only global control of the non-target lexicon, but also local control of the non-target phonemes. Significance: Just as cross-language interference control occurs at the lexical level, this study demonstrates that control also occurs at the phonemic level.
... ("Here you see that she is in need and needs entertainment") (Myslín & Levy, 2015, p. 872). Notably, evidence shows that this behaviour comes with cognitive costs as indicated by observations of a slow-down of speech rate in producing code-switched sentences compared to monolingual sentences (Costa & Santesteban, 2004;Faroqi-Shah & Wereley, n.d.;Fricke et al., 2016), as well as longer naming and reading times in trials where the language of use is changed compared to trials where it is not (Altarriba et al., 1996;Gollan & Ferreira, 2009;Linck et al., 2013;Meuter & Allport, 1999, but see Gullifer et al., 2013). Furthermore, EEG recordings during a sentence comprehension task reported a larger N400 component for sentences involving code-switched words, indexing switching costs related to lexico-semantic access and integration (Christoffels et al., 2007;van Hell & Witteman, 2009). ...
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Bilingualism impacts brain structure, especially in regions involved in language control and processing. However, the relation between structural brain changes and key aspects of bilingual language use is still poorly understood. Here we used structural MRI and non-linear modelling to investigate the effects of habitual code-switching (CS) practices on brain structure among Czech-English bilinguals. We studied the effects of usage frequency of various CS types (categorised by directionality and level of language separation) on the volumes of the caudate nucleus and the thalamus. Caudate volumes were positively correlated with overall CS frequency, with stronger effects for switches from L1 to L2. Thalamic volumes were positively correlated with engagement in forms of CS for which the two languages are more separate, with stronger effects for switching from L2 to L1. These results underscore the importance of using detailed measures of bilingual experiences when investigating the sources of bilingualism-induced neuroplasticity.
... This is a common practice in bilingual speakers and is called code-switching. Like adult bilinguals, bilingual children experience code-switching (Bobb & Wodniecka, 2013;Fricke et al., 2016). Exposure to code-switching does not carry any risks and may be associated with better language outcomes in children capable of processing such input (Kaushanskaya & Crespo, 2019). ...
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The number of immigrant families in Canada and other Western countries has increased in the last several decades. Immigrant families face challenges in bringing up their children in a new country, such as different expectations from two different cultures, being away from their family and immediate support network, financial problems, and language limitations. One of the main concerns of most immigrant parents is their child's language acquisition. Language development is the most significant predictor of children's success in school and later life. Regarding the vital role of language development in each aspect of life, it is essential to explore this growing population's experiences and challenges related to their children's language acquisition. This qualitative study benefited from a narrative inquiry for representing and interpreting an immigrant mother's experiences and challenges in bringing up a bilingual child in Canada. This paper addresses the multiple conflicts affecting immigrant parents' decision to bring up a bilingual or monolingual child. Some of immigrant parents' main concerns, including passing on their accents, code-switching, language delays, limited social interactions and using screen time for teaching language are discussed in this paper.
... Another means of targeting putative code-switching constraints is to examine online processing of code switches, in this case applying eye-tracking technology. Eye tracking has produced useful results in the study of code switching, using both written (e.g., Gollan et al., 2014;Guzzardo Tamargo et al., 2016) and auditory (e.g., Fricke et al., 2016) stimuli. As a further probe into Misiones heritage Portuguese speakers' reactions to specific code-switching configurations, an eye-tracking experiment offered online processing data. ...
Article
This study examines sensitivity to putative grammatical constraints on intra-sentential code-switching, viewed as a relative measure of attainment in heritage bilingual grammars. This is exemplified by a series of interactive tasks carried out with heritage Portuguese speakers in Misiones Province, Argentina. The results demonstrate the viability of deploying a range of experimental techniques in field settings with heritage speakers who do not engage in habitual code switching.
... The seemingly more robust mixing costs in the current study could be due to a multitude of methodological differences with Gullifer et al. (2013), such as the current study requiring Dutch-French bilinguals to produce full sentences, whereas Gullifer et al. (2013) asked their Spanish-English bilingual participants to silently read most of each sentence and then read out loud one marked word. Another notable difference is that Gullifer and colleagues relied on RTs and error rates, whereas the current study relied on language intrusions and, for the first time in a language control study, filled pauses (for a language switching study relying on other dysfluencies, see Fricke et al., 2016). However, RTs are similar to filled pauses in the sense that they both allow insight into cognitive load. ...
Article
Aims and objectives/purpose/research questions While evidence for proactive language control processes has been found during single word production, very little and conflicting evidence has been observed for such control processes during sentence production. So, the main goal of this study was to investigate whether proactive language control can occur during sentence production. Design/methodology/approach To investigate proactive language control during sentence production, we relied on a description task in single and mixed language blocks. Data and analysis Mixing costs and the reversed language dominance effect of language intrusions and filled pauses were used to examine proactive language control. Findings/conclusions Evidence for proactive language control during sentence production came from the mixing cost effect observed with both language intrusions and filled pauses. Whereas no reversed language dominance effect was observed in mixed language blocks, a significant difference in language pattern was observed between single and mixed language blocks, indicating that proactive language control of the first language might be implemented in mixed language blocks during sentence production. Originality Unlike the vast majority of studies investigating language control, this study relied on sentence production instead of single word production. Moreover, to the best of our knowledge, this is the first study to examine filled pauses to gain insight into language control. Significance/implications These data indicate that proactive language control can be implemented during bilingual sentence production.
... Presently, studies on CS cost are inconclusive. Fricke, Kroll, and Dussias (2016) analyzed speech rate and disfluency in naturalistic CS data from Spanish/English bilinguals from ...
Article
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In previous research, there has been an emphasis on differentiating and distancing translanguaging from codeswitching, partly on the basis that the latter refers to the combination of two discrete systems that correspond to named languages. While this is the mainstream view, there are codeswitching scholars who have proposed alternative views that align with some of the same observations and criticisms that have been raised by proponents of translanguaging. In this conceptual paper, I provide an overview of translanguaging alongside opposing views of codeswitching, and I underscore important similarities that have thus far been absent from present discussions regarding translanguaging versus codeswitching. Drawing on data from the understudied Spanish/English codeswitching variety spoken in Northern Belize, I discuss how bilingual compound verbs lend support to alternative views of codeswitching. Despite clear differences in their empirical goals, research conducted by both codeswitching and translanguaging scholars compels us to reexamine fundamental notions about language and linguistic competence. This reevaluation will not only contribute to theoretical advancement, but it will further elucidate our understanding of the complexity and dynamicity that characterizes bi/multilingual speech production and processing.
... A study done by Fricke et al. (2016) shows that Spanish-English bilinguals can use lower-level phonetic details to anticipate upcoming code-switching. Fricke et al. ...
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https://scholarworks.iu.edu/journals/index.php/iulcwp/article/view/31672
... According to Ariffin & Hussin (2011), code-switching is considered as a hurdle when learning a new language. It is noteworthy to highlight that the emphasis of code-switching researches, thus far, are predominantly centred on the use of language change, levied by the word level manipulation between speaker and listener (Fricke et al., 2016). The speakers" articulatory demeanours among bilinguals are observed to modify the phonological facets and shift the lexical choices (Tamargo et al., 2016;Shen et al., 2020). ...
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This paper examines an asynchronous computer-mediated communication (CMC) between bilingual university students in Malaysia, in particular via Whatsapp by appropriating a functional approach in scrutinizing the diverse types and influences for codeswitching (CS). A quantitative methodology was employed wherein a survey was designed and administered to undergraduate students from the Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM). A dataset from a total of 90 respondents was collected from five faculties; Academy of Language Studies, Faculty of Law, Faculty of Communication and Media Studies and Faculty of Education. The yielded findings postulate that inter-sentential code-switching was the most used type of code-switching among the respondents and habitual expression is the main factor that influence them to code-switch.
... Stimuli were recorded with neutral intonation in a sound-attenuated booth using a Shure SM35 head-worn cardioid condenser headset microphone and were then normalized for intensity in Praat (Boersma & Weenink, 2020). English nouns and adjec-tives were not spliced into the unilingual Spanish condition in order to create more naturalistic stimuli free from any artefacts that may influence online processing (e.g., Fricke, Kroll & Dussias, 2016). This is particularly important given that the measure chosen -the pupillary response -is sensitive to changes in attention and arousal that could be brought on by unexpected qualities in the stimuli (e.g., Wetzel, Buttelmann, Schieler, & Widmann, 2016). ...
Article
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The transfer of words from one language to another is ubiquitous in many of the world’s languages. While loanwords have a rich literature in the fields of historical linguistics, language contact, and sociolinguistics, little work has been done examining how loanwords are processed by bilinguals with knowledge of both the source and recipient languages. The present study uses pupillometry to compare the online processing of established loanwords in Puerto Rican Spanish to native Spanish words by highly proficient Puerto Rican Spanish-English bilinguals. Established loanwords elicited a significantly larger pupillary response than native Spanish words, with the pupillary response modulated by both the frequency of the loanword itself and of the native Spanish counterpart. These findings suggest that established loanwords are processed differently than native Spanish words and compete with their native equivalents, potentially due to both intra- and inter-lingual effects of saliency.
... between production and comprehension after analysing English native speakers' neural responses while hearing and comprehending naturalistic narrative speech. In a similar vein, recent findings from code-switching with Spanish -English bilinguals point to a shared architecture for production and comprehension processes in bilinguals: bilingual adults were sensitive to distributional patterns in production and were guided by them in the comprehension of code-switched utterances (Fricke, Kroll & Dussias, 2016;Guzzardo Tamargo, Valdés Kroff & Dussias, 2016). It is, however, still too early to reach conclusions as to whether or not the links between production and comprehension are identical in monolingual and bilingual processing, since research has also indicated that the link between the two processes may differ across L1 and L2 processing. ...
... Such cross-linguistic conflict results in momentary slowdown or greater unexpectancy (Altarriba et al., 1996;Moreno et al., 2002), but bilinguals quickly recover, rarely arriving at the wrong interpretation of a code-switched sentence (Beatty-Martínez & Dussias, 2017;Fricke, Kroll, & Dussias, 2016;Guzzardo Tamargo et al., 2016;Kootstra, Van Hell, & Dijkstra, 2012;Valdés Kroff et al., 2017). But how do bilinguals maintain such control over their languages, integrating so seamlessly? ...
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We investigated whether bilinguals' integration of a code-switch during real-time comprehension, which involves resolving among conflicting linguistic representations, modulates the deployment of cognitive-control mechanisms. In the current experiment, Spanish-English bilinguals (N = 48) completed a cross-task conflict-adaptation paradigm that tested whether reading code-switched sentences triggers cognitive-control engagement that immediately influences performance on an ensuing Flanker trial. We observed that, while incrementally processing sentences, detecting a code-switch (as opposed to reading sentences that did not contain a code-switch) assisted subsequent conflict resolution. Such temporal interdependence between confronting cross-linguistic conflict and ensuing adjustments in behavior indicates that integrating a code-switch during online comprehension may recruit domain-general cognitive-control procedures. We propose that such control mechanisms mobilize to resolve among competing representations that arise across languages during real-time parsing of code-switched input. Overall, the findings provide novel insight into what language-processing demands of bilingualism regulate cognitive-control performance moment by moment. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2019 APA, all rights reserved).
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The contentious question of bilingual processing cost may be recast as a fresh question of code-switching (CS) strategies—quantitative preferences and structural adjustments for switching at particular junctures of two languages. CS strategies are established by considering prosodic and syntactic variables, capitalizing here on bidirectional multi-word CS, spontaneously produced by members of a bilingual community in northern New Mexico who regularly use both languages (Torres Cacoullos and Travis, 2018). CS strategies become apparent by extending the equivalence constraint, which states that bilinguals avoid CS at points of word placement conflict (Poplack, 1980), to examine points of inconsistent equivalence between the languages, where syntactic difficulty could arise. Such sites of variable equivalence are junctures where the word strings of the two languages are equivalent only sometimes due to language-internal variable structures. A case in point for the English-Spanish language pair is the boundary between main and complement clauses, where a conjunction occurs always in Spanish but variably in English. The prosodic distancing strategy is to separate the juncture of the two languages. Here the complement clause appears in a different prosodic unit from the main clause—disproportionately as compared both with monolingual benchmarks and with bilinguals’ own unilingual English and Spanish. Prosodic distancing serves to mitigate variable equivalence. The syntactic selection strategy is to opt for the variant that is more quantitatively available and more discourse neutral. Here the preference is for the Spanish complementizer que—regardless of main or complement clause language. This is the more frequent option in bilinguals’ combined experience in both their languages, whereas the English complementizer that is subject to a number of conditioning factors. Syntactic selection serves to restore equivalence. Discovery of community CS strategies may spur reconsideration of processing cost as a matter of relative difficulty, which will depend on bilinguals’ prosodic and syntactic choices at particular CS sites.
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The ability to differentiate between two languages sets the stage for bilingual learning. Infants can discriminate languages when hearing long passages, but language switches often occur on short time scales with few cues to language identity. As bilingual infants begin learning sequences of sounds and words, how do they detect the dynamics of two languages? In two studies using the head-turn preference procedure, we investigated whether infants (n = 44) can discriminate languages at the level of individual words. In Study 1, bilingual and monolingual 8- to 12-month-olds were tested on their detection of single-word language switching in lists of words (e.g., “dog… lait [fr. milk]”). In Study 2, they were tested on language switching within sentences (e.g., “Do you like the lait?”). We found that infants were unable to detect language switching in lists of words, but the results were inconclusive about infants’ ability to detect language switching within sentences. No differences were observed between bilinguals and monolinguals. Given that bilingual proficiency eventually requires detection of sound sequences across two languages, more research will be needed to conclusively understand when and how this skill emerges. Materials, data, and analysis scripts are available at https://osf.io/9dtwn/.
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The ability to engage in fluent codeswitching is a hallmark of the flexibility and creativity of bilingual language use. Recent discoveries have changed the way we think about codeswitching and its implications for language processing and language control. One is that codeswitching is not haphazard, but subject to unique linguistic and cognitive constraints. Another is that not all bilinguals codeswitch, but those who do, exhibit usage patterns conforming to community-based norms. However, less is known about the cognitive processes that regulate and promote the likelihood of codeswitched speech. We review recent empirical studies and provide corpus evidence that highlight how codeswitching serves as an opportunistic strategy for optimizing performance in cooperative communication. From this perspective, codeswitching is part and parcel of a toolkit available to bilingual codeswitching speakers to assist in language production by allowing both languages to remain active and accessible, and therefore providing an alternative means to convey meaning, with implications for bilingual speech planning and language control more generally.
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Speech production in multilinguals involves constant inhibition of the languages currently not in use. In relation to phonological development, higher inhibitory skills may lead to the improved suppression of interference from the remaining languages in one’s repertoire and more accurate production of target features. The participants were 20 sequential multilingual learners (13-year-olds with L1 Polish, L2 English, L3 German), acquiring their L2 and L3 by formal instruction in a primary school. Inhibition was measured in a modified flanker task (Eriksen & Eriksen 1974; Poarch & Bialystok 2015). Multilingual production of voice onset time (VOT) and rhotic consonants was tested in a delayed repetition task (e.g. Kopečková et al. 2016; Krzysik 2019) in their L2 and L3. The results revealed that higher inhibitory control was related to increased global accuracy in the L2 and L3 production. Moreover, higher inhibitory control was also linked to higher accuracy in the overall L2 production, but there was no significant relationship with the L3 accuracy. These findings suggest that inhibition may play a role in phonological speech production, however, it may depend on one’s level of proficiency.
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Aims and objectives Studies of code-switching (CS) in bilingual speakers using laboratory tasks have been equivocal on whether CS is cognitively demanding. The goal of this study was to examine time costs at the juncture of a CS in a more ecologically valid experimental paradigm. Methodology English (L1)–French (L2) bilingual speakers performed two tasks. The primary experimental task was a novel paradigm that elicited voluntary code-switches in conversation with a bilingual interlocutor. A silent self-paced reading task was used to compare with a laboratory task with involuntary switches. Data and analysis Intersyllabic durations (conversation task) and reading times (reading task) were analyzed. CS cost was the time difference between code-switches and matched non-switches. Cost-switching costs for each switch direction (English-to-French and French-to-English) and type of switch (alternations and insertions) were also compared. Findings Code-switches in conversation were associated with a time cost, and the magnitude was comparable in both directions although speakers more frequently switched from French-to-English. In self-paced reading, switching costs were observed only for switches into the dominant language. Across both tasks, there were no differences in CS time cost between insertions and alternations. Originality This study reports a novel measure of CS costs in conversation, intersyllabic duration, and provides a cross-task comparison in the same group of bilingual speakers to better inform theories of CS. Implications Bilingual speakers experience a time cost when making voluntary switches in conversations. The symmetrical switch costs suggest that both languages have similar activation levels throughout the conversation, and the cognitive costs arise from the act of momentarily switching languages, irrespective of their dominance. In self-paced reading, cognitive costs arise from disturbing the status quo of relative activation-inhibition of each language adopted to perform the task. The comparable CS time cost for insertions and alternations suggests similar cognitive control and linguistic planning mechanisms for both types of switches.
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Previous research on the phonetics and phonology of code-switching has largely focused on word internal phenomenon, such as voice onset time. However, many phonological processes occur across word boundaries, and in the case of code-switching, potentially across language boundaries. This study examines the application of phonological rules across word and language boundaries in cases of code-switching, exploiting cross-linguistic differences in voicing assimilation and spirantization processes in English and Spanish. Results from an oral production paradigm conducted with Spanish–English bilinguals showed an asymmetrical impact of code-switching: switched and non-switched tokens differed in Spanish, but not English. A similar pattern was found for bilinguals of different language dominance profiles. This asymmetry is discussed with respect to the different language-specific degrees of variability in production. Moreover, results from the current study suggest that while phonological processes may be anchored to language-specific lexical items or phonemes, the licensing environment is language non-specific.
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This study analyses the relationship between native English speakers’ perception and production of the novel French /y/–/u/ contrast. Acoustic data were extracted from the learners’ production of French minimal pairs contrasting these French vowels and compared with their processing of the same items in a Visual World eye-tracking task. Results reveal that the vowel most acoustically similar to the learners’ native English /u/ vowel, French /y/, is both easier to identify at early processing stages and more acoustically similar to a native French control group in production, indicating a perception-production relationship. Furthermore, analyses of individual variation reveal that the learners who process both /y/ and /u/ more successfully at later processing stages are also more likely to mark a greater distinction between these phonemes in production. Together, these results indicate a relationship between L2 processing and L2 production at multiple levels. Implications for current L2 speech models are discussed.
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The use of two or more languages is common in most of the world. Yet, until recently, bilingualism was considered to be a complicating factor for language processing, cognition, and the brain. The past 20 years have witnessed an upsurge of research on bilingualism to examine language acquisition and processing, their cognitive and neural bases, and the consequences that bilingualism holds for cognition and the brain over the life span. Contrary to the view that bilingualism complicates the language system, this new research demonstrates that all of the languages that are known and used become part of the same language system. The interactions that arise when two languages are in play have consequences for the mind and the brain and, indeed, for language processing itself, but those consequences are not additive. Thus, bilingualism helps reveal the fundamental architecture and mechanisms of language processing that are otherwise hidden in monolingual speakers.
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Two key assumptions underpin the cognitive neuroscience of language. First, there is a clear-cut split between the processes involved in understanding an utterance (recognizing a word, resolving ambiguity) and the processes involved in crafting that utterance (translating an idea into sound or writing). For example, the “classic” Lichtheim–Broca–Wernicke model proposes distinct anatomical pathways associated with production and comprehension, primarily on the basis of deficit–lesion correlations in aphasia (1). Second, researchers assume that the linguistic mechanisms are lateralized, with production processes (e.g., lexical selection, articulation) and, to some extent, comprehension processes primarily occurring in the left hemisphere. Silbert et al. (2) report a neuroimaging study based on the production and comprehension of naturalistic narrative that challenges these two assumptions.
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A series of discoveries in the last two decades has changed the way we think about bilingualism and its implications for language and cognition. One is that both languages are always active. The parallel activation of the two languages is thought to give rise to competition that imposes demands on the bilingual to control the language not in use to achieve fluency in the target language. The second is that there are consequences of bilingualism that affect the native as well as the second language. The native language changes in response to second language use. The third is that the consequences of bilingualism are not limited to language but appear to reflect a reorganization of brain networks that hold implications for the ways in which bilinguals negotiate cognitive competition more generally. The focus of recent research on bilingualism has been to understand the relation between these discoveries and the implications they hold for language, cognition, and the brain across the lifespan.
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Neuroimaging studies of language have typically focused on either production or comprehension of single speech utterances such as syllables, words, or sentences. In this study we used a new approach to functional MRI acquisition and analysis to characterize the neural responses during production and comprehension of complex real-life speech. First, using a time-warp based intrasubject correlation method, we identified all areas that are reliably activated in the brains of speakers telling a 15-min-long narrative. Next, we identified areas that are reliably activated in the brains of listeners as they comprehended that same narrative. This allowed us to identify networks of brain regions specific to production and comprehension, as well as those that are shared between the two processes. The results indicate that production of a real-life narrative is not localized to the left hemisphere but recruits an extensive bilateral network, which overlaps extensively with the comprehension system. Moreover, by directly comparing the neural activity time courses during production and comprehension of the same narrative we were able to identify not only the spatial overlap of activity but also areas in which the neural activity is coupled across the speaker's and listener's brains during production and comprehension of the same narrative. We demonstrate widespread bilateral coupling between production- and comprehension-related processing within both linguistic and nonlinguistic areas, exposing the surprising extent of shared processes across the two systems.
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Speech comprehension involves extensive use of prediction. Linguistic prediction may be guided by the semantics or syntax, but also by the performance characteristics of the speech signal, such as disfluency. Previous studies have shown that listeners, when presented with the filler uh, exhibit a disfluency bias for discourse-new or unknown referents, drawing inferences about the source of the disfluency. The goal of the present study is to study the contrast between native and non-native disfluencies in speech comprehension. Experiment 1 presented listeners with pictures of high-frequency (e.g., a hand) and low-frequency objects (e.g., a sewing machine) and with fluent and disfluent instructions. Listeners were found to anticipate reference to low-frequency objects when encountering disfluency, thus attributing disfluency to speaker trouble in lexical retrieval. Experiment 2 showed that, when participants listened to disfluent non-native speech, no anticipation of low-frequency referents was observed. We conclude that listeners can adapt their predictive strategies to the (non-native) speaker at hand, extending our understanding of the role of speaker identity in speech comprehension.
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Humans unconsciously track a wide array of distributional characteristics in their sensory environment. Recent research in spoken-language processing has demonstrated that the speech rate surrounding a target region within an utterance influences which words, and how many words, listeners hear later in that utterance. On the basis of hypotheses that listeners track timing information in speech over long timescales, we investigated the possibility that the perception of words is sensitive to speech rate over such a timescale (e.g., an extended conversation). Results demonstrated that listeners tracked variation in the overall pace of speech over an extended duration (analogous to that of a conversation that listeners might have outside the lab) and that this global speech rate influenced which words listeners reported hearing. The effects of speech rate became stronger over time. Our findings are consistent with the hypothesis that neural entrainment by speech occurs on multiple timescales, some lasting more than an hour.
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It is well known that multilingual speakers' nonnative productions are accented. Do these deviations from monolingual productions simply reflect the mislearning of nonnative sound categories, or can difficulties in processing speech sounds also contribute to a speaker's accent? Such difficulties are predicted by interactive theories of production, which propose that nontarget representations, partially activated during lexical access, influence phonetic processing. We examined this possibility using language switching, a task that is well known to disrupt multilingual speech production. We found that these disruptions extend to the articulation of individual speech sounds. When native Spanish speakers are required to unexpectedly switch the language of production between Spanish and English, their speech becomes more accented than when they do not switch languages (particularly for cognate targets). These findings suggest that accents reflect not only difficulty in acquiring second-language speech sounds but also the influence of representations partially activated during on-line speech processing.
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Code-switching (CS) is central to many bilingual communities and, though linguistic and sociolinguistic research has characterised different types of code-switches (alternations, insertions, dense CS), the cognitive control processes (CPs) that mediate them are not well understood. A key issue is how during CS speakers produce the right words in the right order. In speech, serial order emerges from a speech plan in which items are represented in parallel. We propose that entry into the mechanism for speech planning (a competitive queuing mechanism) is governed by CPs best suited to the particular types of code-switches. Language task schemas external to the language network govern access. In CS, they are coordinated cooperatively and operate in a coupled or in an open control mode. The former permits alternations and insertions whereas the latter is required for dense CS. We explore predictions of this CP model and its implications for CS research.
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Mastering two languages has been associated with enhancement in human executive control, but previous studies of this phenomenon have exclusively relied on comparisons between bilingual and monolingual individuals. In the present study, we tested a single group of Welsh-English bilinguals engaged in a nonverbal conflict resolution task and manipulated language context by intermittently presenting words in Welsh, English, or both languages. Surprisingly, participants showed enhanced executive capacity to resolve interference when exposed to a mixed compared with a single language context, even though they ignored the irrelevant contextual words. This result was supported by greater response accuracy and reduced amplitude of the P300, an electrophysiological correlate of cognitive interference. Our findings introduce a new level of plasticity in bilingual executive control dependent on fast changing language context rather than long-term language experience.
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The occurrence of codeswitching, or the seemingly random alternation of two languages both between and within sentences, has been shown (Gumperz, 1976; Pfaff, 1975; Wentz, 1977) to be governed not only by extralinguistic but also linguistic factors. For the balanced bilingual, codeswitching appears to be subject to an ‘equivalence constraint’ (Poplack, 1978): i.e. it tends to occur at points in discourse where juxtaposition of L1 and L2 elements does not violate a surface syntactic rule of either language. If correct, the equivalence constraint on codeswitching may be used to measure degree of bilingual ability. It was hypothesized that equivalence would either be violated by non-fluent bilinguals, or that switch points which are ‘risky’ in terms of syntactic well-formedness (i.e. those which occur within a sentence) would tend to be avoided altogether. To test this hypothesis, I analysed the speech of 20 Puerto Rican residents of a stable bilingual community, exhibiting varying degrees of bilingual ability. Quantitative analysis of their switches revealed that both fluent and non-fluent bilinguals were able to code-switch frequently and still maintain grammaticality in both Lx and L2. While fluent bilinguals tended to switch at various syntactic boundaries within the sentence, non-fluent bilinguals favoured switching between sentences, allowing them to participate in the codeswitching mode, without fear of violating a grammatical rule of either of the languages involved. These results suggest that the codeswitching mode proceeds from that area of the bilingual's grammar where the surface structures of Lx and L2 overlap, and that codeswitching, rather than representing debasement of linguistic skill, is actually a sensitive indicator of bilingual ability.
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Participants' eye movements were monitored as they followed spoken instructions to click on a pictured object with a computer mouse (e.g., ''click on the net''). Participants were slower to éxate the target picture when the onset of the target word came from a competitor word (e.g., ne(ck)t) than from a nonword (e.g., ne(p)t), as predicted by models of spoken-word recognition that incorporate lexical competition. This was found whether the picture of the competitor word (e.g., the picture of a neck) was present on the display or not. Simulations with the TRACE model captured the major trends of éxations to the target and its competitor over time. We argue that eye movements provide a éne-grained measure of lexical activation over time, and thus reveal effects of lexical competition that are masked by response measures such as lexical decisions.
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We report two experiments that investigate the effects of sentence context on bilingual lexical access in Spanish and English. Highly proficient Spanish-English bilinguals read sentences in Spanish and English that included a marked word to be named. The word was either a cognate with similar orthography and/or phonology in the two languages, or a matched non-cognate control. Sentences appeared in one language alone (i.e., Spanish or English) and target words were not predictable on the basis of the preceding semantic context. In Experiment 1, we mixed the language of the sentence within a block such that sentences appeared in an alternating run in Spanish or in English. These conditions partly resemble normally occurring inter-sentential code-switching. In these mixed-language sequences, cognates were named faster than non-cognates in both languages. There were no effects of switching the language of the sentence. In Experiment 2, with Spanish-English bilinguals matched closely to those who participated in the first experiment, we blocked the language of the sentences to encourage language-specific processes. The results were virtually identical to those of the mixed-language experiment. In both cases, target cognates were named faster than non-cognates, and the magnitude of the effect did not change according to the broader context. Taken together, the results support the predictions of the Bilingual Interactive Activation + Model (Dijkstra and van Heuven, 2002) in demonstrating that bilingual lexical access is language non-selective even under conditions in which language-specific cues should enable selective processing. They also demonstrate that, in contrast to lexical switching from one language to the other, inter-sentential code-switching of the sort in which bilinguals frequently engage, imposes no significant costs to lexical processing.
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Speech comprehension and production are governed by control processes. We explore their nature and dynamics in bilingual speakers with a focus on speech production. Prior research indicates that individuals increase cognitive control in order to achieve a desired goal. In the adaptive control hypothesis we propose a stronger hypothesis: Language control processes themselves adapt to the recurrent demands placed on them by the interactional context. Adapting a control process means changing a parameter or parameters about the way it works (its neural capacity or efficiency) or the way it works in concert, or in cascade, with other control processes (e.g., its connectedness). We distinguish eight control processes (goal maintenance, conflict monitoring, interference suppression, salient cue detection, selective response inhibition, task disengagement, task engagement, opportunistic planning). We consider the demands on these processes imposed by three interactional contexts (single language, dual language, and dense code-switching). We predict adaptive changes in the neural regions and circuits associated with specific control processes. A dual-language context, for example, is predicted to lead to the adaptation of a circuit mediating a cascade of control processes that circumvents a control dilemma. Effective test of the adaptive control hypothesis requires behavioural and neuroimaging work that assesses language control in a range of tasks within the same individual.
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MacDonald (2013) proposes that comprehenders are sensitive to statistical patterns in their language input (Claim 1). These patterns are hypothesized to result from speakers' preferences in production, aggregated over the population (Claim 2). Production preferences are taken to be primarily determined by biases that serve production ease, thereby improving fluency (Claim 3). These three claims, together constituting the core of the PDC, are an ambitious endeavor to tie together several lines of research in psycholinguistics and linguistics. Here, I focus on the second and third claim, that it is predominantly “production ease,” rather than communicative pressures, that drives production preferences and hence language form (M, p. 13; cf. Bard et al., 2000; Ferreira and Dell, 2000; Arnold, 2008; Ferreira, 2008; Lam and Watson, 2010). In contrast, I argue that production preferences and language form are unlikely to be understood without reference to communication. Specifically, production preferences are the result of at least two competing type of biases: biases toward production ease and biases toward ease, or at least success, of comprehension (Zipf, 1949). I refer to a weak version of the second type of bias as robust information transfer.1 Two hypotheses about how robust information transfer might affect production preferences are often conflated in the literature. First, speakers might continuously “estimate” their interlocutors' beliefs and structure their utterances based on these estimates. This claim, often referred to as audience design, is what production researchers (incl. M) tend to have in mind when they reject the idea that production preferences are affected by communicative biases. Many consider this claim implausible because production seems too demanding to allow additional computations (Ferreira, 2008). I share Tanenhaus's position that such intuitions are often misleading (Tanenhaus, 2013). Here, however, I pursue an alternative hypothesis, that communicative biases affect production preferences through learning and generalization across previous experiences (building on Jaeger and Ferreira, in press).
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Language production processes can provide insight into how language comprehension works and language typology-why languages tend to have certain characteristics more often than others. Drawing on work in memory retrieval, motor planning, and serial order in action planning, the Production-Distribution-Comprehension (PDC) account links work in the fields of language production, typology, and comprehension: (1) faced with substantial computational burdens of planning and producing utterances, language producers implicitly follow three biases in utterance planning that promote word order choices that reduce these burdens, thereby improving production fluency. (2) These choices, repeated over many utterances and individuals, shape the distributions of utterance forms in language. The claim that language form stems in large degree from producers' attempts to mitigate utterance planning difficulty is contrasted with alternative accounts in which form is driven by language use more broadly, language acquisition processes, or producers' attempts to create language forms that are easily understood by comprehenders. (3) Language perceivers implicitly learn the statistical regularities in their linguistic input, and they use this prior experience to guide comprehension of subsequent language. In particular, they learn to predict the sequential structure of linguistic signals, based on the statistics of previously-encountered input. Thus, key aspects of comprehension behavior are tied to lexico-syntactic statistics in the language, which in turn derive from utterance planning biases promoting production of comparatively easy utterance forms over more difficult ones. This approach contrasts with classic theories in which comprehension behaviors are attributed to innate design features of the language comprehension system and associated working memory. The PDC instead links basic features of comprehension to a different source: production processes that shape language form.
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Linear mixed-effects models (LMEMs) have become increasingly prominent in psycholinguistics and related areas. However, many researchers do not seem to appreciate how random effects structures affect the generalizability of an analysis. Here, we argue that researchers using LMEMs for confirmatory hypothesis testing should minimally adhere to the standards that have been in place for many decades. Through theoretical arguments and Monte Carlo simulation, we show that LMEMs generalize best when they include the maximal random effects structure justified by the design. The generalization performance of LMEMs including data-driven random effects structures strongly depends upon modeling criteria and sample size, yielding reasonable results on moderately-sized samples when conservative criteria are used, but with little or no power advantage over maximal models. Finally, random-intercepts-only LMEMs used on within-subjects and/or within-items data from populations where subjects and/or items vary in their sensitivity to experimental manipulations always generalize worse than separate F1 and F2 tests, and in many cases, even worse than F1 alone. Maximal LMEMs should be the ‘gold standard’ for confirmatory hypothesis testing in psycholinguistics and beyond.
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Until now, research on bilingual auditory word recognition has been scarce, and although most studies agree that lexical access is language-nonselective, there is less consensus with respect to the influence of potentially constraining factors. The present study investigated the influence of three possible constraints. We tested whether language nonselectivity is restricted by (a) a sentence context in a second language (L2), (b) the semantic constraint of the sentence, and (c) the native language of the speaker. Dutch–English bilinguals completed an English auditory lexical decision task on the last word of low- and high-constraining sentences. Sentences were pronounced by a native Dutch speaker with English as the L2, or by a native English speaker with Dutch as the L2. Interlingual homophones (e.g., lief “sweet” – leaf /liːf/) were always recognized more slowly than control words. The semantic constraint of the sentence and the native accent of the speaker modulated, but did not eliminate interlingual homophone effects. These results are discussed within language-nonselective models of lexical access in bilingual auditory word recognition.
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The perception of coarticulated speech as it unfolds over time was investigated by monitoring eye movements of participants as they listened to words with oral vowels or with late or early onset of anticipatory vowel nasalization. When listeners heard [CṼNC] and had visual choices of images of CVNC (e.g., send) and CVC (said) words, they fixated more quickly and more often on the CVNC image when onset of nasalization began early in the vowel compared to when the coarticulatory information occurred later. Moreover, when a standard eye movement programming delay is factored in, fixations on the CVNC image began to occur before listeners heard the nasal consonant. Listeners' attention to coarticulatory cues for velum lowering was selective in two respects: (a) listeners assigned greater perceptual weight to coarticulatory information in phonetic contexts in which [Ṽ] but not N is an especially robust property, and (b) individual listeners differed in their perceptual weights. Overall, the time course of perception of velum lowering in American English indicates that the dynamics of perception parallel the dynamics of the gestural information encoded in the acoustic signal. In real-time processing, listeners closely track unfolding coarticulatory information in ways that speed lexical activation.
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In two experiments, we tested the role of lexical repetition, cognates, and second language (L2) proficiency in the priming of code-switches, using the structural priming technique. Dutch–English bilinguals repeated a code-switched prime sentence (starting in Dutch and ending in English) and then described a target picture by means of a code-switched sentence (also from Dutch into English). Low- and high-proficient speakers of L2 English were tested in Experiments 1 and 2, respectively. We found that the participants’ tendency to switch at the same position as in the prime sentence was influenced by lexical repetition between prime sentence and target picture and by the presence of a cognate in prime and target. A combined analysis showed that these lexical effects were stronger in the high-proficient than in the low-proficient L2 speakers. These results provide new insights into how language-related and speaker-related variables influence code-switching in sentences, and extend cognitive models of lexical and combinatorial processes in bilingual sentence production.
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In this article the triggering hypothesis for codeswitching proposed by Michael Clyne is discussed and tested. According to this hypothesis, cognates can facilitate codeswitching of directly preceding or following words. It is argued that the triggering hypothesis in its original form is incompatible with language production models, as it assumes that language choice takes place at the surface structure of utterances, while in bilingual production models language choice takes place along with lemma selection. An adjusted version of the triggering hypothesis is proposed in which triggering takes place during lemma selection and the scope of triggering is extended to basic units in language production. Data from a Dutch–Moroccan Arabic corpus are used for a statistical test of the original and the adjusted triggering theory. The codeswitching patterns found in the data support part of the original triggering hypothesis, but they are best explained by the adjusted triggering theory.
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Using code-switching as a tool to illustrate how language experience modulates comprehension, the visual world paradigm was employed to examine the extent to which gender-marked Spanish determiners facilitate upcoming target nouns in a group of Spanish-English bilingual code-switchers. The first experiment tested target Spanish nouns embedded in a carrier phrase (Experiment 1b) and included a control Spanish monolingual group (Experiment 1a). The second set of experiments included critical trials in which participants heard code-switches from Spanish determiners into English nouns (e.g., la house) either in a fixed carrier phrase (Experiment 2a) or in variable and complex sentences (Experiment 2b). Across the experiments, bilinguals revealed an asymmetric gender effect in processing, showing facilitation only for feminine target items. These results reflect the asymmetric use of gender in the production of code-switched speech. The extension of the asymmetric effect into Spanish (Experiment 1b) underscores the permeability between language modes in bilingual code-switchers.
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Written by an expert in the field, this study examines the dynamics of contact between languages in an immigrant context. Michael Clyne discusses the dynamics of contact with English using data from a wide range of languages, including German, Dutch, Hungarian, Italian, Spanish, Croatian and Vietnamese. Clyne analyzes how and why these languages change in a country with many immigrants such as Australia, as well as why some languages survive longer than others.
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Three groups of native English speakers named words aloud in Spanish, their second language (L2). Intermediate proficiency learners in a classroom setting (Experiment 1) and in a domestic immersion program (Experiment 2) were compared to a group of highly proficient English–Spanish speakers. All three groups named cognate words more quickly and accurately than matched noncognates, indicating that all speakers experienced cross-language activation during speech planning. However, only the classroom learners exhibited effects of cross-language activation in their articulation: Cognate words were named with shorter overall durations, but longer (more English-like) voice onset times. Inhibition of the first language during L2 speech planning appears to impact the stages of speech production at which cross-language activation patterns can be observed.
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Is grammatical convergence between bilinguals’ two languages inevitable and does code-switching inherently promote it? Despite the burgeoning of bilingualism studies, this question—and even what should count as code-switching—remains contentious. Cumulative scientific advances will depend on attention to the social context in which bilingual phenomena arise, proper handling of spontaneous speech data, and consideration of the probabilistic constraints underlying occurrence rates of linguistic forms. We put forward this program of study as implemented in systematic quantitative analysis of linguistic structures in the New Mexico Spanish-English Bilingual (NMSEB) corpus. This unique compilation of bilingual speech by members of the Hispanic northern New Mexican community in the United States records both borrowing and—vitally—copious multi-word code-switching. Advancing the study of bilingualism is community-based data collection and accountable analysis of the linguistic conditioning of variation in both of the languages in contact as used by the bilinguals themselves, in comparison with appropriate benchmarks, again of both languages (monolingual, or earlier, varieties). The role of code-switching in convergence is evaluated through a novel on-line measure, comparisons based on the proximity of spontaneous use of the other language. Implementation of this test of proximate code-switching confirms a disjunction between bilinguals’ phonology, which is more labile, and morpho-syntax, which is stable. Variation is conditioned by intra-linguistic contextual features, the distribution of which, however, may shift under code-switching, shaping patterns in the bilingual community.
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Growth Curve Analysis and Visualization Using R provides a practical, easy-to-understand guide to carrying out multilevel regression/growth curve analysis (GCA) of time course or longitudinal data in the behavioral sciences, particularly cognitive science, cognitive neuroscience, and psychology. With a minimum of statistical theory and technical jargon, the author focuses on the concrete issue of applying GCA to behavioral science data and individual differences. http://www.crcpress.com/product/isbn/9781466584327 http://www.danmirman.org/gca
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Bilingualism provides a unique opportunity for exploring hypotheses about how the human brain encodes language. For example, the “input switch” theory states that bilinguals can deactivate one language module while using the other. A new measure of spoken language comprehension, headband-mounted eyetracking, allows a firm test of this theory. When given spoken instructions to pick up an object, in a monolingual session, late bilinguals looked briefly at a distractor object whose name in the irrelevant language was initially phonetically similar to the spoken word more often than they looked at a control distractor object. This result indicates some overlap between the two languages in bilinguals, and provides support for parallel, interactive accounts of spoken word recognition in general.
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The present study investigates voice onset times (VOTs) to determine if cognates enhance the cross-language phonetic influences in the speech production of a range of Spanish–English bilinguals: Spanish heritage speakers, English heritage speakers, advanced L2 Spanish learners, and advanced L2 English learners. To answer this question, lexical items with considerable phonological, semantic, and orthographic overlap (cognates) and lexical items with no phonological overlap with their English translation equivalents (non-cognates) were examined. The results indicate that there is a significant effect of cognate status in the Spanish production of VOT by Spanish–English bilinguals. These bilinguals produced /t/ with longer VOT values (more English-like) in the Spanish production of cognates compared to non-cognate words. It is proposed that the exemplar model of lexical representation (Bybee, 2001; Pierrehumbert, 2001) can be extended to include bilingual lexical connections by which cognates facilitate phonetic interference in the bilingual mental lexicon.
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This article introduces the P-chain, an emerging framework for theory in psycholinguistics that unifies research on comprehension, production and acquisition. The framework proposes that language processing involves incremental prediction, which is carried out by the production system. Prediction necessarily leads to prediction error, which drives learning, including both adaptive adjustment to the mature language processing system as well as language acquisition. To illustrate the P-chain, we review the Dual-path model of sentence production, a connectionist model that explains structural priming in production and a number of facts about language acquisition. The potential of this and related models for explaining acquired and developmental disorders of sentence production is discussed.
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In this study, we test the hypothesis that code-switching leads to phonological convergence by examining Voice Onset Time (VOT) realization in the spontaneous code-switched speech of New Mexican Spanish-English bilinguals. We find that average VOT duration values in New Mexican Spanish fall within the range typical of non-contact varieties of the language, while New Mexican English displays VOT values in the low range of typical non-contact English. When we examine the VOT values of Spanish- and English-language words at varying degrees of proximity to code-switch points, we find a similar asymmetry. In Spanish, no effect of recent code-switching is evident. In English, conversely, close proximity to code-switch points results in a significant reduction in VOT values, i.e., in the direction of Spanish. We argue that while the data studied here do not directly demonstrate a causal connection between code-switching and long-term phonological convergence, they would not be inconsistent with such a view. We discuss a number of possible causes for the observed asymmetry between Spanish and English.
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Bilinguals, i.e. those who use two languages in their everyday lives, move in and out of various speech modes when speaking to different interlocutors. When conversing with monolinguals, they speak one language and reduce the activation level of the other language, but when conversing with other bilinguals they choose a base language of interaction and often bring in the other language by either code-switching or borrowing. The aim of the present study is to explore how “guest words” (code-switches and borrowings) are processed by bilingual listeners when interacting with other bilinguals. Different types of English words (varying in phonotactic configuration and lexicon membership) were embedded in French sentences and were produced either as code-switches or borrowings. The gating paradigm (Grosjean, 1980) was used to present these words to French-English bilingual listeners so as to determine the role played by word type and language phonetics in the lexical access of guest words, as well as to uncover the underlying operations involved in the recognition process. Results showed that the phonotactics of a guest word, the presence or absence of a base language homophone, the language phonetics of the word, as well as the language that precedes the word, all play a role in the recognition process. An interactive activation view of bilingual word recognition is proposed to account for the results found in the study.
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Two experiments with Chinese–English bilinguals were conducted to examine the recognition of code-switched words in speech. In Experiment 1, listeners were asked to identify a code-switched word in a sentence on the basis of increasing fragments of the word. In Experiment 2, listeners repeated the code-switched word following a predesignated point upon hearing the sentence. Converging evidence from these experiments shows that the successful recognition of code-switched words depends on the interaction among phonological, structural, and contextual information in the recognition process. The results also indicate that Chinese–English bilinguals can recognize code-switched words with the same amount of information as required by monolingual English listeners. These results are interpreted in terms of parallel activation and interactive processes in spoken word recognition.
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In an experimental study of language switching and selection, bilinguals named numerals in either their first or second language unpredictably. Response latencies (RTs) on switch trials (where the response language changed from the previous trial) were slower than on nonswitch trials. As predicted, the language-switching cost was consistently larger when switching to the dominant L₁ from the weaker L₂ than vice versa such that, on switch trials, L₁ responses were slower than in L₂. This "paradoxical" asymmetry in the cost of switching languages is explained in terms of differences in relative strength of the bilingual's two languages and the involuntary persistence of the previous language set across an intended switch of language. Naming in the weaker language, L₂, requires active inhibition or suppression of the stronger competitor language, L₁; the inhibition persists into the following (switch) trial in the form of "negative priming" of the L₁ lexicon as a whole. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Article
We used a visual lexical decision task to explore control processes in proficient German–English bilinguals. Participants pressed a “yes” button if the letter string was a word in English and a “no” button if it was not. Our critical stimuli were interlingual homographs such as the low-frequency English word TAG. In German, TAG means “day” and is a relatively high frequency word. Overall, our participants responded more slowly to an interlingual homograph than to a control word matched to its English frequency. As we expected, the size of this interference effect depended on various factors. First, including “pure” German words in the stimulus list increased interference. However, participants were able to reduce the degree of interference over time even in the presence of such words. Second, in the absence of pure German words, informing participants about the presence of interlingual homographs from the start of the experimental trials allowed them to reduce interference. We examined the locus of these control effects by analysing carry-over, i.e., reaction times on word trials immediately following an interlingual homograph or its matched control. We inferred from the patterns of interference and carry-over that the primary locus for reducing interference is external to the bilingual lexico-semantic system. We consider the implications of these data for theories of control.
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This paper aims to foster discussion of the means by which bilinguals control their two language systems. It proposes an inhibitory control (IC) model that embodies the principle that there are multiple levels of control. In the model a language task schema (modulated by a higher level of control) “reactively” inhibits potential competitors for production at the lemma level by virtue of their language tags. The IC model is used to expand the explanation of the effect of category blocking in translation proposed by Kroll and Stewart (1994), and predictions of the model are tested against other data. Its relationship to other proposals and models is considered and future directions proposed.