Edited by Gisela Granena, Daniel O. Jackson and Yucel Yilmaz
[Bilingual Processing and Acquisition 3] 2016
► pp. 69–88
Working memory, language processing, and implications of malleability for second language acquisition
Working memory is thought of as a fundamental cognitive system that is particularly important for complex cognition such as language processing. Individuals differ in the amount of information they can keep in working memory, and such differences predict language processing and acquisition, including second language (L2) learning. Given its relevance for higher order cognition, interventions targeting WM have proliferated in recent years, on the premise that improving WM skills might also improve other cognitive functions relying on WM. Accumulating evidence is promising in that certain interventions do result in language-related improvements that go beyond task-specific practice. Given the importance of WM in L2 acquisition, we propose that WM interventions might be a promising avenue to facilitate L2 learning.
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