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Two tongues, one brain: imaging bilingual speech production.

Simmonds AJ, Wise RJ, Leech R - Front Psychol (2011)

Bottom Line: We consider why there has been so little emphasis on this aspect of bilingualism to date, before turning to the motor and sensory complexities involved in learning to speak a second language as an adult.This must involve retuning the neural circuits involved in the motor control of articulation, to enable rapid unfamiliar sequences of movements to be performed with the goal of approximating, as closely as possible, the speech of a native speaker.Accompanying changes in motor networks is experience-dependent plasticity in auditory and somatosensory cortices to integrate auditory memories of the target sounds, copies of feedforward commands from premotor and primary motor cortex and post-articulatory auditory and somatosensory feedback.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Medical Research Council Clinical Sciences Centre, Imperial College London UK.

ABSTRACT
This review considers speaking in a second language from the perspective of motor-sensory control. Previous studies relating brain function to the prior acquisition of two or more languages (neurobilingualism) have investigated the differential demands made on linguistic representations and processes, and the role of domain-general cognitive control systems when speakers switch between languages. In contrast to the detailed discussions on these higher functions, typically articulation is considered only as an underspecified stage of simple motor output. The present review considers speaking in a second language in terms of the accompanying foreign accent, which places demands on the integration of motor and sensory discharges not encountered when articulating in the most fluent language. We consider why there has been so little emphasis on this aspect of bilingualism to date, before turning to the motor and sensory complexities involved in learning to speak a second language as an adult. This must involve retuning the neural circuits involved in the motor control of articulation, to enable rapid unfamiliar sequences of movements to be performed with the goal of approximating, as closely as possible, the speech of a native speaker. Accompanying changes in motor networks is experience-dependent plasticity in auditory and somatosensory cortices to integrate auditory memories of the target sounds, copies of feedforward commands from premotor and primary motor cortex and post-articulatory auditory and somatosensory feedback. Finally, we consider the implications of taking a motor-sensory perspective on speaking a second language, both pedagogical regarding non-native learners and clinical regarding speakers with neurological conditions such as dysarthria.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Universal and language-specific stages of development for speech perception and speech production in typically developing human infants from birth to 1 year.
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Figure 1: Universal and language-specific stages of development for speech perception and speech production in typically developing human infants from birth to 1 year.

Mentions: For a child, language acquisition begins with speech perception. Initially, the speech-perception skills of infants are language-general, which offers the potential to acquire any human language to which the child is exposed. The phonetic repertoire of a language is based on both the individual consonant and vowel sounds and the permissible combinations of these sounds in the creation of words and phrases (Jacquemot et al., 2003). Before an infant is 6 months old, their perceptual system has become tuned to the phonetic repertoire of their native language, and making distinctions between non-native phonemes may be more difficult (the classic example being the lack of distinction between/r/and/l/in Japanese infants; Kuhl, 2004; see Figure 1). This early stage is apparent as a “silent period,” during which the infant listens to language without attempts to produce speech sounds. There then follows the babbling phase, with imitation of simplified syllables. By the time the child is 9 months old, its babbling is becoming language-specific, and a skilled child developmental psychologist can tell the difference between the babblings of children from different language cultures. This is the earliest evidence of language-specific motor–sensory processing. By 1 year, babbling turns to speech, beginning with single words, followed by short phrases and then sentences. Although linguistic errors are frequent at this stage, the accent of the child is clearly that of a native speaker. In contrast, those who learn a second language as an older child or an adult speak with an accent that clearly marks them as a non-native speaker.


Two tongues, one brain: imaging bilingual speech production.

Simmonds AJ, Wise RJ, Leech R - Front Psychol (2011)

Universal and language-specific stages of development for speech perception and speech production in typically developing human infants from birth to 1 year.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3139956&req=5

Figure 1: Universal and language-specific stages of development for speech perception and speech production in typically developing human infants from birth to 1 year.
Mentions: For a child, language acquisition begins with speech perception. Initially, the speech-perception skills of infants are language-general, which offers the potential to acquire any human language to which the child is exposed. The phonetic repertoire of a language is based on both the individual consonant and vowel sounds and the permissible combinations of these sounds in the creation of words and phrases (Jacquemot et al., 2003). Before an infant is 6 months old, their perceptual system has become tuned to the phonetic repertoire of their native language, and making distinctions between non-native phonemes may be more difficult (the classic example being the lack of distinction between/r/and/l/in Japanese infants; Kuhl, 2004; see Figure 1). This early stage is apparent as a “silent period,” during which the infant listens to language without attempts to produce speech sounds. There then follows the babbling phase, with imitation of simplified syllables. By the time the child is 9 months old, its babbling is becoming language-specific, and a skilled child developmental psychologist can tell the difference between the babblings of children from different language cultures. This is the earliest evidence of language-specific motor–sensory processing. By 1 year, babbling turns to speech, beginning with single words, followed by short phrases and then sentences. Although linguistic errors are frequent at this stage, the accent of the child is clearly that of a native speaker. In contrast, those who learn a second language as an older child or an adult speak with an accent that clearly marks them as a non-native speaker.

Bottom Line: We consider why there has been so little emphasis on this aspect of bilingualism to date, before turning to the motor and sensory complexities involved in learning to speak a second language as an adult.This must involve retuning the neural circuits involved in the motor control of articulation, to enable rapid unfamiliar sequences of movements to be performed with the goal of approximating, as closely as possible, the speech of a native speaker.Accompanying changes in motor networks is experience-dependent plasticity in auditory and somatosensory cortices to integrate auditory memories of the target sounds, copies of feedforward commands from premotor and primary motor cortex and post-articulatory auditory and somatosensory feedback.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Medical Research Council Clinical Sciences Centre, Imperial College London UK.

ABSTRACT
This review considers speaking in a second language from the perspective of motor-sensory control. Previous studies relating brain function to the prior acquisition of two or more languages (neurobilingualism) have investigated the differential demands made on linguistic representations and processes, and the role of domain-general cognitive control systems when speakers switch between languages. In contrast to the detailed discussions on these higher functions, typically articulation is considered only as an underspecified stage of simple motor output. The present review considers speaking in a second language in terms of the accompanying foreign accent, which places demands on the integration of motor and sensory discharges not encountered when articulating in the most fluent language. We consider why there has been so little emphasis on this aspect of bilingualism to date, before turning to the motor and sensory complexities involved in learning to speak a second language as an adult. This must involve retuning the neural circuits involved in the motor control of articulation, to enable rapid unfamiliar sequences of movements to be performed with the goal of approximating, as closely as possible, the speech of a native speaker. Accompanying changes in motor networks is experience-dependent plasticity in auditory and somatosensory cortices to integrate auditory memories of the target sounds, copies of feedforward commands from premotor and primary motor cortex and post-articulatory auditory and somatosensory feedback. Finally, we consider the implications of taking a motor-sensory perspective on speaking a second language, both pedagogical regarding non-native learners and clinical regarding speakers with neurological conditions such as dysarthria.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus