Bilingual adult nonword repetition performance patterns in English and Spanish

Gabriela Villaneda, University of Texas at El Paso


Nonword repetition (NWR) is known to assess phonological working memory. During NWR, the individual listens to made-up words and repeats them back. This study evaluated NWR performance patterns, and the relationship between NWR and language recall tasks among forty English and Spanish bilingual adults. Bilingual adults' ages ranged from 18-67 years. Four language recall tasks were administered, including NWR tasks (assessed by PPC), language questionnaire to assess participants' language usage in English and Spanish, sentence repetition task (assessed by raw score), and a story retell (assessed by NDW). All recall measures were administered in a counterbalanced manner across English and Spanish. Results indicated a relationship between Spanish and English NWR, but yielded no statistically significant correlation with other language recall measures. This revealed that phonological short-term working memory is not required to support performance on other language tasks. Findings demonstrated that current language usage did not influence bilingual adults' NWR performance. This study may yield information and aid interpretation of NWR performance in bilingual children with varying language experiences.^

Subject Area

Health Sciences, Speech Pathology|Sociology, Sociolinguistics

Recommended Citation

Villaneda, Gabriela, "Bilingual adult nonword repetition performance patterns in English and Spanish" (2013). ETD Collection for University of Texas, El Paso. AAI1540009.