Simulating the Learning of Languages: How bilinguals learn cognates, false friends, and words of different frequencies
With a distributed connectionist model I simulated the acquisition of a second language by early and late bilinguals and explored the differences between these processes. I also added cognates, false friends, and translation equivalents to the lexicons to investigate if the model was able to mimic the reaction time effects for such words as found in empirical studies. The model showed that the process of learning a second language was slowed down by the knowledge of a native language. It was also able to simulate a cognate facilitation effect, a cognate similarity effect, an interference effect for false friends, and a word-frequency effect. These conclusions contribute to the notion of the language-nonselective nature of the bilingual word recognition system.
Faculteit der Sociale Wetenschappen