Measuring the Impact of bilingualism on executive functioning via inhibitory control abilities in autistic children

Lewis Montgomery, Vicky Chondrogianni, Antonella Sorace, Hugh Rabagliati, Sue Fletcher-Watson, Rachael Davis*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

One factor that may influence how executive functions develop is exposure to more than one language in childhood. This study explored the impact of bilingualism on inhibitory control in autistic (n = 38) and non-autistic children (n = 51). Bilingualism was measured on a continuum of exposure to investigate the effects of language environment on two facets of inhibitory control. Behavioural control of motor impulses was modulated positively through increased bilingual exposure, irrespective of diagnostic status, but bilingual exposure did not significantly affect inhibition involving visual attention. The results partially support the hypothesis that bilingual exposure differentially affects components of inhibitory control and provides important evidence for families that bilingualism is not detrimental to their development.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
Early online date18 Aug 2021
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 18 Aug 2021

Keywords

  • executive functioning
  • autism
  • bilingualism
  • inhibitory control
  • second language exposure
  • cognition

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