The Importance Of Learning A Second Language In Adulthood

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Register to read the introduction… The language centers of the brain, Broca's and Wernicke's areas, occur in every human being regardless of what language they speak. This fact provides solid evidence for the biological influence on language acquisition. Nurture comes in to play through the social aspect of being human. A baby cannot survive on its own; it needs the care, attention, and interaction that most parents provide. This social interaction is the channel through which a child will learn his or her first language, because he or she is immersed in. A study conducted by Linck, Kroll, and Sunderman in 2009 revealed that immersion greatly affects the learning of a second language in adulthood. This study tested twenty-five American students studying abroad in Spanish speaking countries, and three hundred students in traditional classrooms, both with equal proficiency in each respective language, on their ability to use their native tongue versus their second language. The challenge was to name as many objects or ideas that fit in a given category, first in English, then in Spanish. In the first test, the students immersed in the Spanish language named more objects in Spanish than in English, but when they were retested six months after returning to America, they produced more words in English and fewer Spanish words than they did at the time of original testing (Linck, Kroll, & Sunderman, …show more content…
As an age group, adulthood does not appear to be a very advantageous time to begin learning a second language, as Dekeyser, Alfi-Shabtay, & Ravid (2010), have found a negative correlation between age of acquisition and overall fluency. However, adults who are fully immersed in their second language have a greater command of it than adults who are not immersed (Linck, Kroll, & Sunderman, 2009). Immersion may also help nonnative speakers get a better grasp on the phonemics used in that language, especially if the speakers native language is based off the same alphabet (Lemhofer et al., 2008). Dominance of one particular language over another is unlikely (Langdon, Wiig, & Nielsen, 2005), but the adult’s natural aptitude for learning languages may influence thought in one language over another (Abrahamsson & Hyltenstam,

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