Office of Research, UC Riverside
Judith Kroll
Affiliate - Former Professor
Psychology
jkroll@ucr.edu
(951) 0


Bilingualism, Aging, and Cognitive Control

AWARD NUMBER
008570-002
FUND NUMBER
33307
STATUS
Active
AWARD TYPE
3-Grant
AWARD EXECUTION DATE
10/20/2016
BEGIN DATE
7/1/2016
END DATE
6/30/2017
AWARD AMOUNT
$16,452

Sponsor Information

SPONSOR AWARD NUMBER
1657782
SPONSOR
NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION
SPONSOR TYPE
Federal
FUNCTION
Organized Research
PROGRAM NAME

Proposal Information

PROPOSAL NUMBER
17020225
PROPOSAL TYPE
New
ACTIVITY TYPE
Basic Research

PI Information

PI
Kroll, Judith
PI TITLE
Other
PI DEPTARTMENT
Psychology
PI COLLEGE/SCHOOL
Coll of Hum, Arts & Social Sci
CO PIs

Project Information

ABSTRACT

This postdoctoral fellowship grant supports a recent Ph.D. graduate in the interdisciplinary field of psycholinguistics. Findings from this research will inform whether gaining a second language proficiency has widespread effects on how reading comprehension ability is impacted by cognitive decline. They may also have implications for the availability and necessity of second language learning in early education. The research also contributes to the infrastructure of science in two ways: (1) by including a more diverse sample of research participants than is typical in psycholinguistic research, and (2) by involving the mentorship of research assistants who come from groups that are historically under-represented in scientific research. Results from this research are disseminated to broad audiences at national and international academic conferences in an effort to inform the community about the potential benefits of being bilingual and counteract stereotypes about second language use and proficiency, especially in older adult populations.

Within the language domain, readers form predictions about what language input is likely to come next. Of particular interest is whether and how well readers recover when the predictions they generate prove to be incorrect (i.e., when unexpected, though plausible language input is encountered). The proposed study will utilize the timecourse sensitivity of event-related potential (ERP) methodology to determine what mechanism(s) underlie successful recovery from this type of mis-prediction. The PI previously completed PhD training in electrophysiological measures of language processing with a focus on semantics and language comprehension, and has recently received training in bilingualism and second language (L2) processing. The current application takes advantage of that training and expands the PI?s previous work to study prediction in populations that have not previously been examined in this area of research, primarily: older adult bilingual speakers. Bilingualism provides a rich environment for examining two crucial aspects of prediction: (1) whether resource limitations or differences in the nature of L2 processing constrain readers? ability to generate predictions online, and (2) whether inhibitory control affects readers? sensitivity to prediction costs. Inhibitory control has been implicated as a critical process in the successful recovery from mis-prediction. As inhibitory control has also been shown to change significantly as a function of L2 experience and cognitive decline, the proposed project will inform current theories across multiple disciplines, including psychology, linguistics, aging, and neuroscience. The current research agenda, therefore, has the potential to further our understanding of how healthy aging impacts language processing in the brain, and provide a novel way of looking at how bilingual experience may apply to the domain of reading comprehension within this context.
(Abstract from NSF)