Second Language Acquisition

Espanol y el cerebro

Second Language

  • The ability to learn a language is negatively affected by the process of lateralization.

What is Lateralization?

  • Lateralization is when each side of the brain develops it's own specialized process.


Second language learners who are young use the same spot of their first language for their second language.


Older learner's use different spots of their brain for each language. This makes it harder for older people to learn a language.

Am I a young learner or older learner?

Young Learners: between the ages of 2 to puberty.


Old Learners: Over the age of puberty.

Young learners are...

  • More likely to develop native-like accent
  • Less to learn to be considered proficient
  • More likely to receive comprehensible input (environment)
  • Considered native learner if language is learned before the age of 5

Older Learners...

  • Consciously use strategies to aid learning
  • Have knowledge from first language to draw from
  • Have greater control over input (environment)

How do you know if your proficient at a second language?

  • 2-3 years to speak, communicate, and understand convos
  • 4-10 years to read, write, speak, listen, understand
  • Use grammar
  • sociolinguistics
  • Strategic competence

Factors that Affect Second Language

  • Motivation
  • Age
  • Access to language
  • Personality
  • First language development
  • Quality of instruction
  • Cognitive ability