Centre for Languages and Literature

The Joint Faculties of Humanities and Theology | Lund University

Person

Annika Andersson PhD

As a preschool teacher I was fascinated by early second language (L2) acquisition and worked with 3- to 7-year old children to help them acquire Swedish as their second language. During my graduate studies I have investigated L2 acquisition using both event related potentials (ERP) and behavioral measures in monolingual and bilingual children between 6- and 8-years of age. Monolingual children are native English speakers, and bilingual children are native Spanish speakers who began to acquire English first in school i.e. around four years of age.

I am currently involved in a newly started project in the Humanities laboratory on processing of Swedish as a second language in adults that differ in first language.

Research

About the research

Language can be divided into different subsystems. The subsystems I am investigating with ERPs are phonological awareness, semantics, and syntax (grammar).
Earlier studies comparing ERP components in bilinguals and monolinguals do so with adults who acquired their second language at different ages, and have found systems important for grammar to be more sensitive to differences in experience than systems important for semantics.

However, few differences have been reported for groups that acquired L2 prior to puberty. One difficulty for studies on L2 acquisition is to separate the effects of proficiency and AoA that are often confounded such that early acquisition is related to higher proficiency in different aspects of language. Our current studies of bilingual children (6-8 years old) differentiate the effects of AoA and proficiency.

Preliminary analyses suggest effects of AoA and proficiency on different language subsystem. In particular, the semantic subsystem seems dependent on proficiency while the phonological and the syntactic subsystems seem vulnerable to small variations in AoA. Already at a delayed acquisition of about 3 years was the anterior rhyming effect absent and the latency of the posterior rhyming effect longer than in 3- to 5-year old monolingual children. The distribution of the anterior syntactic effect when present was similar to earlier studies in adults (right and medial) while left and lateral in monolingual children.

Publications

Books (1)
Articles (1)
Book chapters (4)
Conference contributions (19)
Reviews (1)

Research portal (Lund University)

Other tasks and qualifications

Publications

Andersson, A., & Baldwin, D. (2003). Statistical learning in the action domain. Talk presented at the Undergraduate Conference, Stanford, U.S.

Andersson, A., Fanning, J., & Neville, H. (2009a). An ERP study on the effects of age of acquisition and proficiency in 6-8 year old children's responses to semantic violations. Talk presented at the Neurobilingualism: Bilingual functioning from infancy to adulthood. Bangor, Wales, U.K

Andersson, A., Fanning, J., & Neville, H. (2009b). Monolingual and bilingual 6-8 year old children display N400 responses differentially mediated by proficiency and age of acquisition. Paper presented at the The Neurobiology of Language Conference. Chicago, U.S.

Andersson, A., Fanning, J., & Neville, H. (2009c). Monolingual and bilingual 6-8 year old children display N400 responses mediated by proficiency and age of acquisition. Paper presented at the Society for Research in Child Development. Denver, U.S.

Andersson, A., Fanning, J. L., & Neville, H. J. (2009). An ERP study of nonword rhyming in 3- to 8-year old monolinguals and 6- to 8-year old bilinguals investigating the effects of age and proficiency. Talk presented at the Swedish Association for Language and Cognition. Stockholm, Sweden

Andersson, A., Sanders, L. D., Fanning, J., & Neville, H. (2005). A developmental ERP study of nonword rhyming. Paper presented at the Cognitive Neuroscience Society. New York, U.S.

Andersson, A., Yamada, Y., Fanning, J., & Neville, H. (2008). An ERP study of nonword rhyming in 3- to 5-year olds: the effect of age and proficiency. Paper presented at the Cognitive Neuroscience Society. San Fransisco, U.S.

Andersson, A., Yamada, Y., Pakulak, E., & Neville, H. (2006). Second language acquisition in 6-to8-years-olds: relationship between proficiency and N400 responses to semantic anomalies. Paper presented at the Cognitive Neuroscience Society. San Fransisco, U.S.

Andersson, A., Yamada, Y., Pakulak, E., & Neville, H. (2007). N400 responses mediated by proficiency rather than age of acquisition in second language learners between 6 and 8 years of age. Paper presented at the Swedish Association for Language and Cognition. Lund, Sweden

Baldwin, D., Andersson, A., Saffran, J., & Meyer, M. (2008). Segmenting dynamic human action via statistical structure. Cognition, 106(3), 1382-1407.

Meyer, M., Baldwin, D. A., Saffran, J. R., & Andersson, A. (2007). Adults track statistical regularity in variable human action. Paper presented at the Association for Psychological Science. Washington, D.C.

Neville, H. J., Andersson, A., Bagdade, O., Bell, T., Currin, J., Fanning, J., et al. (2009). How can musical training improve cognition. In S. Dehaene & C. Petit (Eds.), The Origins of human dialog: Speech and music (pp. 277-290). Paris: Odile Jacob.

Neville, H. J., Andersson, A., Bagdade, O., Bell, T., Currin, J., Fanning, J., et al. (2008). Effects of music training on brain and cognitive development in under-privileged 3- to 5-year-old children: Preliminary results. In C. Asbury & B. Rich (Eds.), Learning, arts, and the brain. New York: Organized by M. Gazzaniga. Dana Press.

Stevens, C., Sanders, L. D., Andersson, A., & Neville, H. J. (2006). Vulnerability and plasticity of selective auditory attention in children: evidence from language-impaired and second-language learners. Paper presented at the Cognitive Neuroscience Society. San Fransisco, U.S.

Annika Andersson

Researcher
General Linguistics
Centre for Languages and Literature

Contact information

E-mail annika.anderssonhumlab.luse

Phone +46 46 222 08 91

Room SOL:H507b

Visiting address Helgonabacken 12, Lund

Postal address Box 201, 221 00 Lund

Internal post code 20