Aspects of bilingualism : Code-switching, syntactic and semantic development in a bilingual child

University essay from Högskolan i Halmstad/Sektionen för lärarutbildning (LUT)

Abstract: The essay deals with different definitions of bilingualism and why people become bilingual. Both positive and negative aspects of bilingualism are considered. It also deals with the term code-switching and when bilingual people code-switch. The material used in the essay comes from the on-line CHILD corpus of child language. The charts and the graph in the essay have been produced from a study made by the author of this essay. This study includes a bilingual girl of the age one year and three months up until the age two years and seven months. It includes the mean length of her utterances, how much the child uses the different word classes and different semantic groups, as well as how much the child code-switches in different ages. The results show that the mean length of utterances in Spanish most of the time is increasing, while the mean length of utterances in English is increasing until the child is just over two years old and then it fluctuated considerably.

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