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The use of emotional paralinguistic cues in monolingual, unbalanced bilingual and balanced bilingual children
Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Psychology.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-7251-5263
Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Psychology.
2017 (English)Conference paper, Poster (with or without abstract) (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Between the ages of 4 and 6 years old, children primarily rely on the lexical content of an utterance rather than on paralinguistic cues to identify a speaker’s emotional state. This bias gradually disappears around the age of 7 or 8. From then on, children start using paralinguistic cues in order to identify their interlocutor’s emotional state, even when the lexical content and paralinguistic cues are incongruent. This skill is essential for understanding sarcasm and detecting lies.

Bilingual speakers need to focus on the language used by their interlocutor in order to determine which language to use, while this choice is considerably easier for monolinguals who only have one language. This could have an effect on how and when the bias disappears for bilinguals. As bilinguals need to be more attentive to the speaker, it is possible that the bias disappears earlier. However, as bilinguals need to allocate more attentional resources to attend to the language itself, this could leave them with fewer resources to process paralinguistic emotional cues.

In order to investigate this, we asked monolingual and bilingual children between the age of 6 and 8 years to identify the emotional valence of spoken words. The words were positive, negative or neutral and were expressed in a happy, angry or neutral tone of voice. In some blocks, the task was to identify the emotional valence of the word content, and in others, the valence of the prosody, or tone of voice. Bilingual participants were divided according to the level of balance between their two languages (i.e., balanced versus unbalanced exposure) as balancedness has shown to affect task performance. Our preliminary results show that the groups may perform differently in some conditions, suggesting that exposure to one versus several languages may influence the development of emotion identification using paralinguistic cues.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017.
National Category
Psychology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-32165OAI: oai:DiVA.org:miun-32165DiVA, id: diva2:1160606
Conference
the 11th International Symposium on Bilingualism, Limerick, Ireland, June 11-15, 2017
Available from: 2017-11-27 Created: 2017-11-27 Last updated: 2017-11-28Bibliographically approved

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Champoux-Larsson, Marie-FranceDylman, Alexandra

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

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Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
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  • asciidoc
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