Display Settings:

Format

Send to:

Choose Destination
We are sorry, but NCBI web applications do not support your browser and may not function properly. More information
Trends Cogn Sci. 2012 Apr;16(4):240-50. doi: 10.1016/j.tics.2012.03.001.

Bilingualism: consequences for mind and brain.

Author information

  • 1Department of Psychology, York University, 4700 Keele Street, Toronto, ON, M3J 1P3, Canada. ellenb@yorku.ca

Abstract

Building on earlier evidence showing a beneficial effect of bilingualism on children's cognitive development, we review recent studies using both behavioral and neuroimaging methods to examine the effects of bilingualism on cognition in adulthood and explore possible mechanisms for these effects. This research shows that bilingualism has a somewhat muted effect in adulthood but a larger role in older age, protecting against cognitive decline, a concept known as 'cognitive reserve'. We discuss recent evidence that bilingualism is associated with a delay in the onset of symptoms of dementia. Cognitive reserve is a crucial research area in the context of an aging population; the possibility that bilingualism contributes to cognitive reserve is therefore of growing importance as populations become increasingly diverse.

Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

PMID:
22464592
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC3322418
Free PMC Article

Images from this publication.See all images (1)Free text

Figure 1
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

0 comments
How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Elsevier Science Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk