The Perks Of Being A Biligual

By SiliconIndia   |   Thursday, 30 April 2015, 12:53 Hrs
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BANGALORE: Dictionary.com defines the meaning of ‘bilingual’ as the ability to speak two languages with the facility of a native speaker. Speaking more than a language does not limit to the advantage of expressing in more than a language. It also reflects flexible and agile mind with the ability to effectively manage high cognitive processes. Researchers refer to this as bilingual advantage.



The cognitive benefits a bilingual brain has, widens with biological age growth. Bilinguals experience cognitive aging like awareness, information handling, memory and reasoning at a much later stage in life. Age-related degenerative disorders like dementia or Alzheimer come in late among bilinguals up to almost five years.



Recent researches on psychological science of bilinguals and show how  the combination of language a bilingual knows affect their thoughts and actions in life as Times of India reports.



The research was conducted by showing video clips like  a woman walking towards a car or a man cycling towards the and more were shown to German-English bilinguals.



On watching this, monolingual German speakers simply point out the goal associated in the work.  English monolinguals describe it as "A woman is walking" or "a man is cycling" that is put the visual display into words.



Conclusions that can be derived from this are that Germans consume events as a holistic one. English speakers on the other hand, just focus on the action involved in the entire footage.



 Grammar also varies depending on the language one is speaking. It has been observed English monolingual speakers are more proned to the use of ‘ing’ morpheme like "I am playing the piano and I cannot come to the phone". There is no such instinct among the Germans.



The research also derived cross-linguistic differences affect non verbal communication capacities of humans.



English and German monolinguals were shown a series of video clips that showed people walking, biking, running, or driving. Their task was to determine whether each of the clips had an ambiguous goal or similar to a goal-oriented scene or a scene with no –goal.



In response, Germans hitched ambiguous scenes with goal-oriented scenes easily than English. It has been finally derived , Germans are much more concerned about the result out of the task than English monolinguals who limit to the action in the video alone.



The same procedure was conducted among German English bilinguals in Germany and it was found that they were just as goal-focused as any other native speaker. German-English bilinguals in U.K. turned out to be action-focused as native English speakers.



On another aspect of the research on bilinguals, one of the two languages they knew was kept in front during the video watching session where participants spoke out numbers in one of the languages. The language they were pronouncing influenced their thoughts on the video they watched.



When English was blocked, the bilinguals behaved exactly like pure Germans. Again, as German was blocked to theEnglish speakers, the matched ambiguous scenes with open-ended conclusions.



Thus the outcome was ehaviors of bilinguals depend to a great extent on the current language of action. For example, Israeli Arabs easily connect to names like Ahmed and Samir in Arabic language over Hebrew.



The respondents themselves accepted that their behavious and thought process alter depending on the language they use at a particular point of time. It becomes exactly the one that corresponds to the language they speak verbally.



While deciding risk factors, it came out bilinguals take better and rational decisions when they think in the other language over their native.



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