How does being bilingual affect your brain? It depends on how you use language

Depending on what you read, speaking more than one language may or may not make you smarter. These mixed messages are understandably confusing, and they’re due to the fact that nothing is quite as simple as it’s typically portrayed when it comes to neuroscience. We can’t give a simple “yes” or “no” to the question [...]

By |2020-10-08T12:16:15+00:00October 8th, 2020|Bilingual, Bilingualism, Language|0 Comments

Norway has been bilingual since the Middle Ages

The fact that Norwegians wrote with runes in the Viking Age and Middle Ages is well known. But how did it go when alphabetic writing arrived and we switched from runes to the letters we know today? New research on inscriptions with letters shows that the transition was far slower than many believe. “We find [...]

By |2020-09-09T12:58:49+00:00September 9th, 2020|Bilingual, Language, Latin language, Norway, Runes|0 Comments

Why it’s okay for bilingual children to mix languages

Few would consider mastering more than one language a bad idea. In fact, research points to a number of cognitive, economic and academic advantages in being bilingual. Parents who speak different languages understand the family home is an important setting to learn both, and seek various ways to help their children thrive bilingually. One of [...]

By |2018-06-21T10:25:52+00:00June 21st, 2018|Bilingual, Bilingualism, Children, Languages|0 Comments

Artificial intelligence goes bilingual—without a dictionary

Automatic language translation has come a long way, thanks to neural networks—computer algorithms that take inspiration from the human brain. But training such networks requires an enormous amount of data: millions of sentence-by-sentence translations to demonstrate how a human would do it. Now, two new papers show that neural networks can learn to translate with [...]

Bad language: why being bilingual makes swearing easier

My dad had a liberal philosophy of childrearing, but he would always tell us off for swearing. As a result, I grew up feeling very uncomfortable using swearwords. Or, at least, so I thought – when I first moved to Scotland, I noticed that it was actually very easy to swear in English. Interestingly enough, [...]

By |2018-02-22T00:22:03+00:00May 11th, 2017|Bilingual, Bilingualism|0 Comments

Is Perfect Bilingualism Attainable?

Raising children to speak two languages is no easy feat. Parents often find themselves enrolling children in language immersion programs, exposing them to different languages at home, encouraging them watch cartoons in another language, and sometimes even hiring language tutors or nannies to speak to their kids in foreign languages. But does this process need [...]

Do Bilinguals Have Superior Cognitive Control?

The frequent switching between languages in bilinguals' brains has led many to ask whether this lifelong exercise also makes bilinguals better at controlling other mental processes, giving them a cognitive edge. That remains to be determined. But in a new study, researchers took a more nuanced look at cognition in bilinguals, and rather than focusing [...]

By |2015-10-28T17:20:35+00:00October 28th, 2015|Bilingual, Bilingualism, Bilinguals, Language, Linguistics|0 Comments