English phonological abilities of Spanish- and English-speaking bilingual children were compared to those of monolingual children at 30 months of age and at five years. Measures of language abilities and language experience at 30 months were included in order to determine the impact that these variables have on English phonological ability. We hypothesized that early phonological abilities will be predictive of later phonological abilities for both monolingual and bilingual children. We also hypothesized that early language abilities and experience with each language will be predictive of concurrent and later phonological abilities, but we expected the relationship to be stronger between English language abilities and phonological abilities than Spanish language abilities and English phonological abilities. Phonology measures were collected for 10 monolingual and 47 bilingual participants at 30 months and at five years of age. Results indicate that early English phonological abilities are not predictive of later phonological abilities for monolingual or bilingual children. Although language experience was related to language ability (vocabulary size), relative exposure to English was not directly related to English phonological abilities. Although monolingual children had significantly poorer English phonological abilities at 30 months than monolingual English speaking children, their English phonological abilities were commensurate with those of the monolingual group at five years. These findings suggest that bilingual children are learning properties of English phonology at a faster rate than their monolingual peers between 30 months and five years of age.
|Commitee:||Brundage, Shelley, Campbell, Sylvia|
|School:||The George Washington University|
|Department:||Speech and Hearing Science|
|School Location:||United States -- District of Columbia|
|Source:||MAI 54/05M(E), Masters Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Linguistics, Speech therapy, Developmental psychology, Ethnic studies, Language|
|Keywords:||Bilingual children, Pediatric, Phonological development, Spanish, Speech sound disorders|
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