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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Commun Sci Disord. 2012;17(1): 24-35.
Parallel Activation in Bilingual Phonological Processing
Su-Yeon Lee` , and Holly LStorkel`
Copyright ©2012 The Korean Academy of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology
이수연(Su-Yeon Lee)| 홀리 스토켈(Holly L. Storkel)
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ABSTRACT

Background & Objectives
The present research examined the influence of phonotactic probability on phonological processing when phonotactic probability was matched (Experiment 1) or mismatched (Experiment 2) between the bilingual speakers’ two languages.
Methods
In Experiment 1, three groups of children participated: English monolinguals, Korean monolinguals, and Korean-English bilinguals. A same-different task with non-word stimuli was used. The non-words were matched in phonotactic probability across the two languages (i.e., English-low/Korean-low versus English-high/Korean-high). In Experiment 2, only bilingual children participated in a same-different task with non-word stimuli mismatched in phonotactic probability. Specifically, phonological processing of English-low/Korean-high versus English-high/Koreanlow non-words was examined across two phonetic contexts (i.e., English-phonetic and Koreanphonetic).
Results
Results of Experiment 1 showed that all three groups responded more rapidly to English-high/Korean-high than to English-low/Korean-low non-words. This result replicates past findings of the facilitative effects of phonotactic probability for English monolinguals and extends to Korean monolinguals and Korean-English bilinguals. Results of Experiment 2 showed a significant interaction between phonotactic probability and phonetic context. In the English-phonetic context, English-low/Korean-high non-words were responded to more accurately and quickly than English-high/Korean-low non-words. In contrast, in the Koreanphonetic context, English-high/Korean-low non-words tended to be responded to more accurately and quickly than English-low/Korean-high non-words.
Discussion & Conclusion
The results from the present study show that bilinguals encounter competition effects of phonotactic probability on phonological processing when the probability is mismatched across two languages. This competition effect from mismatched probability suggests the presence of parallel activation of both languages in phonological processing. Combined with the results of Experiment 1, the magnitude of parallel activation was found to vary across the native and non-native languages. Specifically, both facilitation and competition effects were significant in non-native (English) language processing, while the effects were not significant in native (Korean) language processing. Such an asymmetry in the magnitude of parallel activation between the native and non-native languages is consistent with previous findings of parallel activation in bilingual lexical processing. Taken together, the findings of the current study suggest that phonological representations of the two languages are activated simultaneously, and language status may be a factor that mediates the magnitude of parallel activation.
Keywords: 이중언어 사용자 | 음운처리 | 병행 활성화 | 음소배열확률 | parallel activation | bilingual | phonological processing
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