Summary of Two Articles on Language and Speech Article one: Werker, J.F., & Tees, R.C. (2002). Cross-language speech perception: evidence for perceptual reorganization during the first year of life. Infant Behaviour and Development, 25: 121-133. The background: what was already known about the study’s subject of inquiry? What was still controversial? How does the study fit in this context? (1/2 page) Scholars have previously predicted that human infants are born with the ability to discriminate the “universal set” of phonetic contrasts regardless of their language experience; scholars have also predicted that such ability declines as a function of linguistic experience. Other evidence reveals that young infants can discriminate speech...The end:
.....onths cannot, and bilingual children at one year can. The pattern in the bilingual group indicates a temporal decline around eight months of age, a recovery four months later – and this ultimately reveals the following: “the time course of phonetic representation shows a different developmental pattern, with bilinguals lagging behind monolinguals in the process of attuning to some specific vowel categories that are contrastive in just one of the two ambient languages….the distinctive phenomenon that is to be emphasized here is the different progression that the perceptual reorganization processes follow during the second half of the first year…” (please see Bosch & Sebastian-Galles, 2003, p.237). The pertinent questions appear answered.