ERIC Number: EJ1070268
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Sep
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
The Brain Adapts to Orthography with Experience: Evidence from English and Chinese
Cao, Fan; Brennan, Christine; Booth, James R.
Developmental Science, v18 n5 p785-798 Sep 2015
Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), we examined the process of language specialization in the brain by comparing developmental changes in two contrastive orthographies: Chinese and English. In a visual word rhyming judgment task, we found a significant interaction between age and language in left inferior parietal lobule and left superior temporal gyrus, which was due to greater developmental increases in English than in Chinese. Moreover, we found that higher skill only in English children was correlated with greater activation in left inferior parietal lobule. These findings suggest that the regions associated with phonological processing are essential in English reading development. We also found greater developmental increases in English than in Chinese in left inferior temporal gyrus, suggesting refinement of this region for fine-grained word form recognition. In contrast, greater developmental increases in Chinese than in English were found in right middle occipital gyrus, suggesting the importance of holistic visual-orthographic analysis in Chinese reading acquisition. Our results suggest that the brain adapts to the special features of the orthography by engaging relevant brain regions to a greater degree over development.
Descriptors: Brain, Brain Hemisphere Functions, Orthographic Symbols, Phonology, Reading Processes, English, Chinese, Task Analysis, Rhyme, Language Acquisition, Lateral Dominance, Specialization, Age, Cognitive Processes, Word Recognition
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) (NIH)
Authoring Institution: N/A
IES Grant or Contract Numbers: R01 HD042049