Typicality Effect and Category Structure in Spanish–English Bilingual Children and Adults Purpose The study examines the typicality effect in Spanish–English bilingual children and adults in their 2 languages. Method Two studies were conducted using a category-generation task to compare the typical items generated by children with those generated by adults. Children in the 1st study differed orthogonally with respect ... Research Article
Research Article  |   June 10, 2017
Typicality Effect and Category Structure in Spanish–English Bilingual Children and Adults
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Prarthana Shivabasappa
    Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, The University of Texas at Austin
  • Elizabeth D. Peña
    Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, The University of Texas at Austin
  • Lisa M. Bedore
    Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, The University of Texas at Austin
  • Disclosure: The authors have declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication.
    Disclosure: The authors have declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication. ×
  • Correspondence to Prarthana Shivabasappa: prarthana@utexas.edu
  • Editor: Rhea Paul
    Editor: Rhea Paul×
  • Associate Editor: Marleen Westerveld
    Associate Editor: Marleen Westerveld×
Article Information
Cultural & Linguistic Diversity / Language / Research Articles
Research Article   |   June 10, 2017
Typicality Effect and Category Structure in Spanish–English Bilingual Children and Adults
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 2017, Vol. 60, 1577-1589. doi:10.1044/2016_JSLHR-L-15-0377
History: Received October 30, 2015 , Revised March 18, 2016 , Accepted November 10, 2016
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 2017, Vol. 60, 1577-1589. doi:10.1044/2016_JSLHR-L-15-0377
History: Received October 30, 2015; Revised March 18, 2016; Accepted November 10, 2016

Purpose The study examines the typicality effect in Spanish–English bilingual children and adults in their 2 languages.

Method Two studies were conducted using a category-generation task to compare the typical items generated by children with those generated by adults. Children in the 1st study differed orthogonally with respect to age (older, younger) and language use (higher Spanish use, higher English use). In the 2nd study, the older and younger children were matched with adults on their current Spanish use to delineate the influence of test language and age.

Results Children with higher English use generated more typical items, and these occurred earlier in their word lists in English than in Spanish. Participants at all levels of Spanish experience generated fewer typical items in Spanish than in English. Thus, there was less convergence of items considered typical among participants in Spanish. Older and younger children did not differ in the number of typical items generated. However, when participants were matched for language use, older children produced typical items earlier in their word lists than did younger children.

Conclusion This study demonstrates the influence of language use and test language in generation of typical items in bilingual children.

Supplemental Materials: https://doi.org/10.23641/asha.5089888

Acknowledgment
This research was funded by National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders Grant R21HD053223 (awarded to Elizabeth D. Peña [PI] and Lisa M. Bedore [Co-PI]).
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