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Second language learning and academic achievement revisited : a connectionist deconstruction of the cognitive… Hawson, Anne 1996

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SECOND L A N G U A G E LEARNING AND ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT REVISITED: A CONNECTIONIST D E C O N S T R U C T I O N O F T H E COGNITIVE CONSEQUENCES OF BILINGUALISM by ANNE HAWSON B . S c , U n i v e r s i t y o f S t . Andrews, 1964 M.Sc, U n i v e r s i t y o f Western O n t a r i o , 1968  A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE  REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY in  THE  FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES  (Centre f o r t h e Study o f C u r r i c u l u m and I n s t r u c t i o n ) We accept t h i s t h e s i s as conforming t o t h e Required standard  THE  UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA March 19 9 6 ©Anne Hawson, 1996  r  In presenting this thesis in partial fulfilment of the requirements for an advanced degree at the University of British Columbia, I agree that the Library shall make it freely available for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of my department or by his or her representatives.  It is understood that copying or  publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission.  Department of rjadQ\C UUilH rt-N b The University of British Columbia Vancouver, Canada  XTN ^ T f e lA 6 T 1 Q Nj  ABSTRACT  The o r i g i n a l Threshold Hypothesis proposed i n 1976 by Cummins as a reasonable explanation of the data gathered to that date on the cognitive consequences  of learning a second language has gained  widespread acceptance i n second language teaching c i r c l e s , but has been the subject of considerable debate  among second  language  researchers. An examination of the c r i t i q u e s of the hypothesis as well as the responses invoked by these c r i t i q u e s reveals that much of  the  criticism  Hypothesis accrue  i s well-founded.  proposes  through  conceptualization  that  Given  "cognitive"  the  learning  of  cognition  of  that  benefits a  Threshold  or d e f i c i t s  can  language,  the  second  underpinning  the  the  hypothesis i s  important i n understanding i t s inadequacies. Upon examination of Cummins' work,  i t i s concluded  that  cognitive  processing i s  considered by Cummins to be a discrete category of brain processing operating at the conceptual l e v e l .  A fundamental premise of t h i s thesis i s that connectionism, which proposes operating  that on  cognition a  i s more  sub-conceptual  appropriately  level,  and  as  described  being  as  intimately  intertwined and dependent upon what have been regarded as  "non-  cognitive" aspects of brain functioning such as emotion, attention, and sensory processing, provides a new and p o t e n t i a l l y enlightening perspective on cognitive issues. A c r i t i q u e of connectionism as a valid  model  of  learning  i n the  brain  suggests  that  i t has  c o n s i d e r a b l e v a l i d i t y , but cannot y e t d e s c r i b e a l l types and/or a l l processes  involved i n learning. Nevertheless,  i t i s concluded  that  a model o f second language l e a r n i n g b u i l t upon t h e c o n j e c t u r e s o f connectionism learning thereby  i n immersion provide  b e n e f i t s and  The  c o u l d b r i n g new  model  clues  i n s i g h t s i n t o how  situations affects which  might  second  language  brain processing,  explain  perceived  and  cognitive  deficits.  developed proposes  that,  under  immersion  conditions,  second language l e a r n e r s may be undergoing an a t t e n t i o n a l s h i f t i n information p r o c e s s i n g towards the v i s u a l system, and away from t h e auditory.  If this  hypothesis  t e s t s , i t c o u l d e x p l a i n why  can be  substantiated  by  empirical  second language l e a r n e r s i n immersion  s i t u a t i o n s are i n danger of becoming poor r e a d e r s , and may fertile  ground  treatments.  for  the  development  of  remedial  T h i s i s a wholly t h e o r e t i c a l study based on  research.  iii  provide  educational literature  TABLE OF CONTENTS Page ..  ABSTRACT  ii  TABLE OF CONTENTS  iv  LIST OF FIGURES  vi vii  ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS  viii  PREFACE  1  INTRODUCTION 1. A CRITIQUE OF CUMMINS' THRESHOLD HYPOTHESIS  H i s t o r i c a l Perspective An E x a m i n a t i o n o f t h e V a l i d i t y o f t h e C l a s s i f i c a t i o n o f tihe • T h r e s h o l d H y p o t h e s i s a s an H y p o t h e s i s 1.3 R e v i e w o f t h e C r i t i q u e s o f Cummins' T h r e s h o l d Hypothesis 1.3.1 I n t r o d u c t i o n . . 1.3.2 C o n c e p t u a l c o n c e r n s 1.3.3 P h i l o s o p h i c a l c o n c e r n s 1.3.4 A n a l y t i c a l concerns 1.4 Summary o f C h a p t e r one  18  1.1 1.2  1  2. A CRITIQUE OF CONNECTIONISM  H i s t o r i c a l Perspective An E x a m i n a t i o n o f C o n n e c t i o n i s m w i t h t h e O b j e c t of C l a s s i f y i n g It Appropriately 2.3 An E x a m i n a t i o n o f t h e V a l i d i t y o f C o n n e c t i o n i s t Models o f L e a r n i n g 2.3.1 B i o l o g i c a l I c o n s t r a i n t s o n c o n n e c t i o n i s t learning procedures 2.3.2 A t t e n t i o n as a b i o l p g i c a l c o n s t r a i n t on l e a r n i n g . . . . . . . . . . 2.3.3 C o n n e c t i o n i s t models o f l e a r n i n g 2.3.4 C o n c l u s i o n s on t h e v a l i d i t y o f connectionism 2.4 Summary o f C h a p t e r two  2.1 2.2  34 40 40 42 80 89 93  ...  1  96 128 132 132 145 186 217 226  3. CONNECTIONISM, ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT, AND SECOND LANGUAGE LEARNING IN IMMERSION SITUATIONS: AN HYPOTHESIS 3.1 3.2  I n t r o d u c t i o n : The C h a l l e n g e s F a c i n g t h e Connectionist Perspective Development o f a C o n n e c t i o n i s t H y p o t h e s i s o f t h e Changes i n B r a i n P r o c e s s i n g I n i t i a t e d by Second Language L e a r n i n g  iv  236  244  Development o f a g e n e r a l model o f l e a r n i n g i n the b r a i n 3.2.2 Development o f a s p e e c h - b a s e d c o n n e c t i o n i s t model o f l a n g u a g e l e a r n i n g 3.2.3 L e a r n i n g a s e c o n d l a n g u a g e i n i m m e r s i o n s i t u a t i o n s : Towards a c o n n e c t i o n i s t hypothesis of the c o g n i t i v e consequences of b i l i n g u a l i s m An E x a m i n a t i o n o f t h e E x p l a n a t o r y Power o f t h e S h i f t in Information Processing Strategy Hypothesis .... 3.3.1 I n t r o d u c t i o n 3.3.2 I n f o r m a t i o n i p r o c e s s i n g c o n s e q u e n c e s o f an a t t e n t i o n a l s h i f t towards t h e v i s u a l system . . 3.3.3 An e x p l a n a t i o n o f s t u d i e s on t h e a c a d e m i c o r c o g n i t i v e consequences second language l e a r n i n g from the p e r s p e c t i v e o f the s h i f t in information processing strategy hypothesis R e l e v a n c e and I m p l i c a t i o n s ! o f t h e S h i f t i n Information Processing Strategy Hypothesis f o r Second Language L e a r n i n g and A c a d e m i c A c h i e v e m e n t . . . 3.4.1 G e n e r a l i m p l i c a t i o n s 3.4.2 On t h e i n t e r f e r e n c e e f f e c t s o f s o c i o c u l t u r a l factors 3.4.3 G e n e r a l recommendations f o r a i d i n g second language l e a r n i n g i n immersion s i t u a t i o n s b a s e d on t h e s h i f t i n i n f o r m a t i o n p r o c e s s i n g hypothesis 3.2.1  244 261  !  3.3  3.4  4. CONCLUSION: A RE-EXAMINATION OF CUMMINS' THRESHOLD HYPOTHESIS FROM THE PERSPECTIVE OF THE SHIFT IN INFORMATION PROCESSING STRATEGY HYPOTHESIS 4.1  Introduction  An A s s e s s m e n t o f t h e V a l i d i t y o f D e f i c i t T h e o r y Charges L e v e l l e d a t the T h r e s h o l d Hypothesis 4.2.1 An e x a m i n a t i o n o f t h e d e v e l o p m e n t a l pathway s u g g e s t e d by t h e T h r e s h o l d H y p o t h e s i s 4.2.2 Comparison o f t h e model o f c o g n i t i o n underpinning the Threshold Hypothesis w i t h t h e c o n n e c t i o n i s t model 4.2.3 D e f i c i t h y p o t h e s i s c h a r g e s r e v i s i t e d 4.3 Some I n s i g h t i n t o t h e R e a l i t y a n d N a t u r e o f T h r e s h o l d s o f L i n g u i s t i c Competence 4.4 C o n c l u d i n g Remarks  278 291 291 292  303 322 322 325  328  334  4.2  336 336 343 348 350 353  GLOSSARY  356  BIBLIOGRAPHY  360  V  L I S T OF FIGURES I  Page Figure 3.1 S h i f t  in Information Processing Strategy Hypothesis  Figure 3.2 S h i f t  in  Information Processing  Hypothesis:  Three Separate  Strategy  Cases  Figure 3.3 C"ummins' T h r e s h o l d H y p o t h e s i s  296  .  314  Figure 3.4 D i a z ' s T h r e s h o l d H y p o t h e s i s Figure 4.1 Cummins' T h r e s h o l d H y p o t h e s i s Figure 4.2 "Weak" I n t e r p r e t a t i o n o f Cummins' Hypothesis  vi  294  314 338 Threshold  ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS T h a n k s a r e due t o a l l my c o m m i t t e e members, Dr S t e p h e n C a r e y , Dr V i c t o r F r o e s e , and Dr P e t e r R e i n e r , f o r s t a y i n g t h e c o u r s e w i t h me, and f o r e n c o u r a g i n g me i n my e f f o r t s . S p e c i a l t h a n k s go t o Dr C a r e y f o r a l l t h e s t i m u l a t i n g d i s c u s s i o n s a s t h e work was p r o g r e s s i n g and f o r a l l o w i n g me t o p u r s u e my own l i n e o f t h i n k i n g , a s w e l l a s t o Dr R e i n e r f o r h i s t e c h n i c a l a s s i s t a n c e and c o n t i n u a l s u p p o r t f o r t h i s p r o j e c t . I w o u l d a l s o l i k e t o a c k n o w l e d g e Dr W a l t e r W e r n e r o f t h e C e n t r e f o r t h e S t u d y o f C u r r i c u l u m a n d I n s t r u c t i o n w i t h o u t whose w i l l i n g n e s s t o l i s t e n t o my i d e a s and p r e s e n t c h a l l e n g i n g a r g u m e n t s t h i s t h e s i s would have s u f f e r e d . W i t h r e s p e c t t o f i n a n c i a l s u p p o r t , my g r a t i t u d e g o e s t o Dr J o h n W i l l i n s k y , d i r e c t o r o f t h e C e n t r e f o r the Study of Curriculum and Instruction, who, as well as e n c o u r a g i n g me i n my r e s e a r c h , g e n e r o u s l y f o u n d work f o r me a s a r e s e a r c h and e d i t o r i a l a s s i s t a n t w i t h i n t h e c e n t r e , and a l s o t o t h e D e p a r t m e n t o f L a n g u a g e E d u c a t i o n w h i c h p r o v i d e d f u n d s f o r me t o a t t e n d c o n f e r e n c e s i n t h e U n i t e d S t a t e s . I am i n d e b t e d a l s o t o Dr S t e v e P e t e r s e n o f W a s h i n g t o n U n i v e r s i t y S c h o o l o f M e d i c i n e , Dr E r n s t N i e b u r o f The J o h n s H o p k i n s U n i v e r s i t y , a n d Dr Mary L o u C h e a l for their generous a d v i c e , and f o r forwarding me p a p e r s on attention. 1  L a s t , b u t b y no means l e a s t , I w o u l d l i k e t o t h a n k my f a m i l y , my d a u g h t e r s F i o n a and K i r s t e n , a n d my h u s b a n d H e r b , for their p a t i e n c e , f o r b e a r a n c e , and m o r a l s u p p o r t t h r o u g h o u t a p r o c e s s w h i c h h a s b e e n much more t i m e a n d e n e r g y c o n s u m i n g t h a n h a d e v e r b e e n a n t i c i p a t e d . I c o u l d n e v e r h a v e made i t w i t h o u t t h e m .  vii  PREFACE  When I the  think  topic  there  b a c k t o what m i g h t have f i r s t  of  second  language  learning  made me " b i l i n g u a l "  exact) very  and BBC E n g l i s h ; working-class  Canada  as  Canadians  a  in  and academic  Scottish dialect  being the  family  y o u n g woman  to  and  first  it  living  and  teaching  in  whole  family,  both  in  function well mentally; There  are  t h e most  to  and  took  terms  and  these  to r a t i o n a l i z e  however,  a result  there  why I are  o f my w a n t i n g t o when  my c h i l d r e n  Rummaging  through  across  small  a  translated the  but  where  its  the  toll  on  ability  my e x p e r i e n c e s b e c o m i n g f l u e n t but  to  understand  Egypt  in  seem t o  to  French. me t o  became f a s c i n a t e d w i t h how t h e  only three  incidents  spread out  p e r i o d o f t w e n t y y e a r s w h i c h come t o m i n d . T h e f i r s t  general  be  linguistically  culture  health  p r o b a b l y many more r e a s o n s ,  to  be  important.  try  works,  only  Jamaica  general  Scotland  emigrating  difficult  not  stress of being i n a completely d i f f e r e n t  I  achievement,  (Dundonian,  university;  finding  in  i n t h e Whole o f my e x t e n d e d  attend  and b e u n d e r s t o o d b y t h e m ,  culturally;  If  my i n t e r e s t  a r e many images t h a t come t o m i n d : my u p b r i n g i n g i n  which  the  initiated  the  text  brain over  a  came a b o u t  as  i n f o r m m y s e l f about e d u c a t i o n a l t h e o r y  in  were  just  bookshelves written  by  entering in  Maria  the  the  local  school library,  Montessori  in  i n t o E n g l i s h i n 1955): C h i l d h o o d E d u c a t i o n . In  following:  viii  system. I  came  1949  (and  it  I  read  a p r e j u d i c e h a s f o u n d i t s way i n t o t h e a d u l t the  l i f e o f t h e c h i l d c a n be c h a n g e d o r  teaching.  This prejudice  that  child  the  within  himself,  - the notion  improved o n l y  that  through  impedes t h e u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f t h e  constructs and t h a t  program and a t e c h n i q u e  himself,  this  of  tha^  inner  he  teacher  education,  has  a  also  fact  teacher  follows  a n d t h a t we a d u l t s  a c k n o w l e d g i n g t h i s unknown t e a c h e r may e n j o y t h e p r i v i l e g e good f o r t u n e  o f becoming h i s a s s i s t a n t s and f a i t h f u l  by h e l p i n g him w i t h our c o o p e r a t i o n ,  It  was  the  notion  imagination, needs  of  a  the  of  this  self-guided person  it  teaching  inhabits  l e a r n i n g was a p p r o p r i a t e  for  the  had r e a c h e d d e v e l o p m e n t a l l y . it  be e s s e n t i a l l y t h e  teacher it  "teacher  (p.  would  in  Would  its  effectiveness  connectionism, I  some i n s i g h t w h i c h m i g h t h e l p  that  be an o n - g o i n g p r o c e s s be  now f e e l  largely  me  in  genetically  influence?  the  direction  towards the s t u d y o f a t t e n t i o n ,  while  was  Cairo  at ix  an  I  have  questions.  and i n p a r t i c u l a r in  Through  s a t i s f i e d that  i n answering these  headed  this  be c o r r e c t ? Would  studies,  teaching  the  whatever  same i n a n i m a l s and humans? What w o u l d  o r would e x p e r i e n c e be an e f f e c t i v e  I  with  Would  i n the young, or c o u l d i t  incident  tune  my  How w o u l d s u c h a s y s t e m work?  determined,  second  caught  person  life?  my r e s e a r c h i n g o f  servants,  initiate  l o o k l i k e ? C o u l d s u c h a mechanism a l w a y s  o n l y be p r e s e n t  and  stage that the  throughout  The  that  mechanism  particular  by  63)  within"  which  a  international  of  brain  happened  school.  The  s c h o o l was s i t u a t e d c l o s e t o a r a i l w a y r o a d l e a d i n g up t o cross  the  tracks  it. at  So e v e r y m o r n i n g , the  n o t i c e d a young g i r l  lifting  walking  her  start  about  some d i s t a n c e a h e a d o f thoughts,  of  me.  towards  day.  the  This  track  s h e was  main  a n d many o t h e r s h a d one  She l o o k e d c o m p l e t e l y  s e e where  a n x i o u s a b o u t h e r when I  the  I  going.  the  I  I  track  absorbed i n  by  to  morning,  11 y e a r s o l d w a l k i n g t o w a r d s  steadily  head t o  t r a c k which c r o s s e d the  her  herself,  never  became a  little  heard a t r a i n ,  headed by an o l d - f a s h i o n e d  steam e n g i n e ,  approaching the c r o s s i n g ,  b u t t h e d r i v e r was c l a n g i n g  the  by h i s  s u r e she would t a k e  big  bell  eventually. closer  I  head i n was  As  I  c a b i n and I i  watched  her  felt  and  s u d d e n l y became r e a l l y s p i t e of  the  horrendous,  fact  the  alarmed:  that the  as p o s s i b l e I  walked  on d o g g e d l y .  c o u l d n ' t hear I  drawing  she w a s n ' t  I  yelled  out  calling finally,  to  out  of  my own v o i c e  began,to run,  catch  his  her  cabin  attention  s i c k i n the  when s h e h a d one  leg  waving -  all  being  later,  she  "Didn't  run  over.  looked quite  you hear the  When  I  j  Later story  in school, she  said  when I  to  caught  up  -  !  her  no  and s t i l l  with  was  the  her and  "No. But I  I  don't x  I  leaning and  She s t o p p e d , rails  and  a  few I  gasped  hear  the to  seconds  it  out  now."  !  regaled the a s s i s t a n t headmistress with  " Y o u know,  as she  vigorously  avail.  cross  bell  knowledge t h a t  hands  surprised,  She r e p l i e d i  raising  jumping back j u s t , i n t i m e  calm though  train?"  his  raised to  t r a i n was a b o u t two f e e t f r o m h e r l e g , avoid  and  a warning  would never r e a c h h e r b e f o r e t h e t r a i n d i d ; t h e d r i v e r precariously  closer  n o i s e from b o t h t r a i n and  s o much s o t h a t , when  loudly  train  notice  know w h a t ' s  wrong  with  the  these  kids. Just a l i t t l e while ago, someone else walked into the side of i  a train  i n that same area and had h i s leg broken".  For me  the  questions abounded: How could someone not hear a noise that loud at one moment, and hear i t the next? How  could someone not see a huge  t r a i n just a few yards away? What kind of mechanism can "lock out" information so central to survival? Did l i v i n g which  the  language  and  culture  were  anything t o do with a l l of t h i s ? beginnings  of  answers  to  these  i n a country i n  completely  I now  feel  foreign  that  question through  have  I have the my  study  of  attention. The t h i r d experience which guided my search came through teaching French as a foreign language i n a private school to grade 7 and 8 students here i n Vancouver. Because the children had  come from  various schools within the area (the school was newly opened at the time), they had a l l had different instruction i n French and so were very varied i n t h e i r l e v e l s of expertise, although they had been streamed  into the lower class i n t h i s school. One thing they did  have i n common was that they did not l i k e French, and some of them a c t i v e l y loathed i t . Needless to say, d i s c i p l i n e i n French class was  a problem, and the amount of learning that went on there was  minimal.  One  animated  f i l m c a l l e d Remi on the French channel. I t was  told  morning at home, I happened to see  i n many weekly episodes about  the l i f e  a  children's a story  of a young boy of  around 10 years old who wandered around France at the turn of the century as an apprentice to a t r a v e l l i n g performer and h i s animals. xi  The  film  was v e r y  lively,  moving m u s i c , but  the  beautiful  visually,  F r e n c h was o f  a n d a c c o m p a n i e d by  a very high l e v e l ,  enough f o r me t o u n d e r s t a n d n e v e r mind t h e s e s t u d e n t s . it  n e v e r t h e l e s s , and showed i t  liked it just  I  would t a p e some more f o r t h e m ,  had t o  s p i t e of  t o them o n t h e  let  videotaped  premise that  they d i d n ' t ,  me know and t h a t w o u l d be t h a t .  if  they  then  they  They l o v e d i t  in  n o t b e i n g a b l e t o u n d e r s t a n d a word o f what was s a i d .  We  developed a pattern  f o r w a t c h i n g t h e shows: I  i n E n g l i s h o f what t h e y were g o i n g t o plot  if  I  difficult  completely,  g a v e them an o v e r v i e w  s e e w i t h o u t g i v i n g away  and supplemented t h i s  with  comments d u r i n g  v i e w i n g o f t h e p r o g r a m ; we w a t c h e d t h e w h o l e h a l f  couple doing  of  homework t e l l i n g  months t h e y  the  writing,  had not  but  their  leap.  great  might  and d e l i g h t  I  write  Within  become a s t o n i s h i n g l y k e e n  interest  F r e n c h h a d d o n e a quantum relief  what t h e y h a d s e e n .  only  the  h o u r e p i s o d e and  t h e n t h e y a s k e d me f o r t h e v o c a b u l a r y t h a t t h e y w o u l d need t o a few s e n t e n c e s f o r  the  As I  level  watched  add,  it  in  all  this  was c l e a r  aspects  process,  t o me t h a t  laughter  and  faces of  the  caught  up  initiated ostensibly effective  joy,  o f g r e a t h a r d s h i p s , and e v e n d e a t h s , all  of  w h i c h was r e f l e c t e d  s t u d e n t s as they watched.  in such  questioning: a change  in  Why  was  interest  "non-cognitive"  aspect  i n promoting learning?  these questions too thanks to  the  xii  I  of  it The  as w e l l  emotionally  on  with  was t h e e m o t i o n a l c o n t e n t o f t h e program w h i c h h a d i n s p i r e d i t . s t o r y l i n e was f u l l  a  on  as the  A n d o n c e a g a i n my m i n d was it  in of  that  emotional  learning? brain  content  How c o u l d  processing  now h a v e t e n t a t i v e  this  be  answers  i n s i g h t of Antonio Damasio.  so to  N e e d l e s s t o s a y , p e r h a p s , I. have drawn a g r e a t from o b t a i n i n g how  insight  into  n e u r o s c i e n c e might  Though t h e thousands  hours  of  provide  work,  h a v e been moments o f g r e a t dark  corners  lifting  my  of  my  spirits  complexity yet  enlightening  educators w i l l  find  often  of  this  mind-  joy as the  l i g h t s went o n ,  with  appreciation  the  its  how  the  function.  results  of  and u s e f u l .  xiii  them.  and e y e - w e a r y i n g ,  on  the  responses to  d i s s e r t a t i o n h a s meant  knowledge  s i m p l i c i t y of  satisfaction  b o t h t h e h u g e n e s s o f my q u e s t i o n s and  r e s e a r c h i n g and w r i t i n g of  deal of  It  illuminating  mind/brain of  the  works  and  paradoxical  i s my hope t h a t  my s e a r c h i n g b o t h  there  other  interesting  INTRODUCTION  Ascribing general cognitive benefits  or d e f i c i t s  even  is  worse,  to  groups  careful reflection.  of  learners  was  made.  of  It  the  case  Cummins,  first  benefits  and  be  in  argued  point  delineated  not  deficits  stand  which  with  alone.  In  b a s i s upon w h i c h t h e  judgement  this  thesis  Threshold which  learning  that  the  last  three  one  associates of  highly  Hypothesis  second  c o n d i t i o n s . However,  1  requires  repercussions of  proportion to  1976, the  or,  magnitude  the  in  a learner  the  in  is  p a r t i c u l a r l y under i m m e r s i o n * does  all  informational  will  influential  matter  T h i s i s e s p e c i a l l y so as the  s u c h a d e s i g n a t i o n c a n grow o u t o f and v a l i d i t y  a  to  of  Jim  cognitive languages,  his hypothesis  decades  in  particular,  hypotheses espousing the notion t h a t general c o g n i t i v e b e n e f i t s deficits  accrue  from the  learning  i proffered 1991;  and c o u n t e r e d  Diaz,  1984).  It  1985;  is  (see  to  second languages have  been  i  Carey,  Edelsky et  interesting  of  and  al.,  1991a, 1983;  1991b;  Cummins,  Reynolds,  note with regard t o  t h a t r e s u l t s obtained i n s t u d i e s examining t h e i r  1991;  1984,  Rivera,  these hypotheses  validity  differ  in  c o n c l u s i o n s a c c o r d i n g t o n a t i o n a l boundaries, with Canadian s t u d i e s i  j  t e n d i n g towards the c o g n i t i v e b e n e f i t lean  more  1991b).  This  expediency 1  available  towards  cognitive  observation  may  be  s i d e , while American s t u d i e s  deficits  heightens  biasing  Please note: d e f i n i t i o n s i n the g l o s s a r y .  (see  Carey,  suspicion  either  research  for  starred  1  all  1987,  that  1991a,  political  questions (*)  words  are  or  interpretation that the  of the r e s u l t s or b o t h . There i s  s o c i a l factors play  a significant  phenomena d e f i n e d a s a d d i t i v e *  and  therefore  considered deficits  as  certainly  2  social  factors  contributing  incurred  by  the  students  i n the  development  and s u b t r a c t i v e *  must  to  role  in  in  cognitive  bilingual  of  bilingualism,  corollary  reputed  no d o u b t  fashion  be  benefits  or  language  learning  situations.  For  second  conundrum.  language We  cognition*, capacity,  ask  often  the  ourselves:  of  this  What  considered to  t h a t makes i t  Can we n e u t r a l i s e benefit  educators,  constitutes  is  such i n f l u e n c e s or at it  in  be a d i s c r e t e  so s u s c e p t i b l e t o  our students? Is  there  a  disturbing  the  nature  and c e n t r a l  mental  sociological influences? least  possible to  e m p l o y them f o r  reach into  the  all  learning questions,  students,  environment? however,  Are attempts to cognitive like  a  whatever  their  Couched  just  socioeconomic s t a t u s , below  the  surface  bold  unprecedented. his  a n a l y s i s of  p.  159).  a  question  to  some,  the  asking  of  A l l a n Reynolds poses e s s e n t i a l l y the the  cognitive  consequences of  The d i f f e r e n t p o l i t i c a l c o n t e x t s i n t h e Canada i s d i s c u s s e d more f u l l y i n s e c t i o n 2 . 1 . 2  of  2  them:  general may seem  it  is  not  same q u e r y  bilingualism  United  good these  l i n k v a r y i n g second language performance t o  advantages o r d i s a d v a n t a g e s v a l i d ? Though t h i s  of  would  of  i s one w h i c h i s t h e t o u c h s t o n e f o r a l l  the  core  l e a r n i n g e x p e r i e n c e and come up w i t h some i n s i g h t s w h i c h  offer  of  States  in  (1991,  and  The  problem  cognition, fact  appears  its  that i t  processes involved action  h a s been t h e cognition  in  thinking  the  (Sanford,  in  p r o c e s s e s and i t s  of  of  rooted  will)  1985,  p.  are  defined  Bruer,  an  in  his  eminent  often  and  affect  cognitive  way,"  and  3  text.  once  again,  no  functioning  enormous r e s e a r c h e f f o r t .  The  (the  Indeed,  be  quite  simply  those  opposed t o  "conation  actions  the  itself  of  is  rarely  psychologist  Thought  defined  replied  definition  is  in  cognition  (1993),  interested  issues,  (the  emotions)"  on b e i n g a s k e d how  Schools for  formal  define the  as  educational  clearly  in  John  applying  " i n the  available  usual in  the  B u t d o e s e v e r y o n e who r e a d s B r u e r ' s t e x t u n d e r s t a n d what he  means by t h e not  to  to  despite  and c o g n i t i o n  book  of  taken to  learning  recent  psychological theory  of  and  1),  inability  manner  subject  l i t e r a t u r e employing the term. was  an  more  terms  " c o g n i t i o n " and " c o g n i t i v e "  reasonable  to  assume  concepts according to t h e i r and i f  this  is  s o , a r e we a l l  F o r anyone i n t e r e s t e d terms,  a  level  check  into  in  that  everyone  of expertise  talking  finding  Is  understands  these  in cognitive  about the  out the  functioning?  theory,  same phenomena?  " u s u a l " meaning o f  some p s y c h o l o g i c a l d i c t i o n a r i e s  and  is  not  defined.  Psychology  (HarrS  cognition,  and r e f e r s  3  Attention  I  &  Lamb, to  Even The 1983)  these  general  t e x t s i s b o t h f r u i t f u l and s u r p r i s i n g . I n many p s y c h o l o g i c a l cognition  it  texts,  Encyclopaedic Dictionary has  no  separate  entry  i t s meaning i n a v e r y c u r s o r y manner  of for  under  p u t t h i s q u e s t i o n t o t h e a u t h o r a t t h e West C o a s t c o n f e r e n c e i n Eugene, Oregon i n t h e s p r i n g o f 1993. 3  the  reference  complexity:  In  "cognitive  Reflects  i s brought  been  ( p . 91)  A broad  used  it  t h a t term very are  loosely)  under  refer  by  (Corsini,  to  so) term which h a s such  of mental  "behaviors"  where t h e u n d e r l y i n g  nature  t o note  and i n v o l v e imagery,  in  as  (using  characteristics  symbolizing, belief,  insight,  intentionality,  ( p . 129)  that the l i s t  Anderson  activities  e t c . Most p s y c h o l o g i s t s have  and so f o r t h ,  interesting  cognition  Psychology  to  complex r u l e u s e ,  problem-solving,  i s also  used  unspecifiably  t o any c l a s s  o f an a b s t r a c t  expectancy,  It  (almost  conceiving, reasoning, to refer  i n The Penguin  (1985):  traditionally  thinking,  t h e range  t o o u r a t t e n t i o n by Reber  of Psychology  cognition:  a definition,  . . .  broad,  Dictionary  do g i v e  (cognition)  cognitive  phenomena w h i c h a r e g r o u p e d u n d e r c o g n i t i o n i s a s t o n i s h i n g l y which  which  of thinking  as f o l l o w s :  mental  fact  texts  a style  complexity"  of  a  those  for  the  1987) h a s l i t t l e  o f phenomena  Concise overlap  grouped  Encyclopedia  with that  of  g i v e n by  Reber: Cognition  is  a  designate  a l l processes involved  E r n e s t R. H i l g a r d states  involved  includes  general  term  or  a  "generic  term  i n knowing,"  c o g n i t i o n comprises a l l mental i n knowing  perception,  and t h e m i n d ' s  attention,  4  memory,  used  to  according  to  activity  or  functioning, imagery,  and  language  functions, area  of  Symbolizing,  developmental  artificial  insight,  intelligence  expectancy,  attention,  memory,  cognitive  p s y c h o l o g i s t s , not  researchers,  are  the  phenomena t h e y  their the  knowledge o f part  of  "cognitive  are are  to  the  fine  reluctant  well  researchers,  It  this  to  of  the  type  "deficit"-labelled,  become s e l f - f u l f i l l i n g  effort  these  to  processes, of  some o f of  seems a m i t e c a v a l i e r  on  employing  deficits"  Labels of  an  incompleteness  be  p r e s c r i p t i v e ways.  in  and  intelligence  definitions  due t o  therefore, "cognitive  neuroscientists  structure  factors!  perception,  as  studies  give  the  202)  artificial  out  to  investigating  and  (p.  as  mention  carrying  influential  benefits"  [sic].  ! Armies of  presently  themselves  p r o b l e m s o l v i n g , and  ....  imagery,  g a i n some u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f and t h e y  processes,  in  terms  like  descriptive  can, unfortunately  and  for  the  prophesies, in spite  of  i  the  fact  that,  cognition,  given  none o f  the  the  state  definitions  endorsed as b e i n g b i o l o g i c a l l y  Where d o e s one t u r n of  to,  c o g n i t i o n and i t s  to this  then,  neurophilosopher*  studies  the  expertise  to  date  into  the  c a n be  field  researchers  of  for  a coherent  overlap with t h a t of  of  wholeheartedly  and i n f o r m a t i v e  of P a t r i c i a  who q u e s t i o n s ,  neuroscience  from  nature  well-founded.  the w r i t i n g s  self-styled  countless  inquiry  u n d e r l y i n g p r o c e s s e s ? My q u e s t  q u e s t i o n l e d me t o  in  of  many  and  as  her  disciplines  a  for  view  an answer  Churchland, a result  of  discussions whose  her with  areas  " c o g n i t i v e " r e s e a r c h e r s , whether  5  of an  I  "empirically  justified  distinction  non-cognitive w i l l survive, even  a  1986,  rough  pp.  approximation  151-152).  processes  or  as  of  On t h i s  cognitive  if  it  the  current then,  others  the  as  research  learning,  on  the  reasoning,  role  and  of  p r o c e s s e s " from c o g n i t i v e  Churchland  believes  manner o f  will the  to  get  a  considered I  am i n a g r e e m e n t  to  with her.  be g a i n e d b y a p p r o a c h i n g t h e brains  cognitive this  of  found  is  on t h e  too  be  for  connectionism*,  focuses  capability  of  on the  an  learning  the  approach the  the  Jacobs exactly  i s s u e s i s not so r a d i c a l and this  acquisition,  Schumann  (1992)  approach and  many  towards  also the  connectionist  6  Jacobs,  study machine  of  1994). its  some o f  the  of  tool.  memory little  general of  A more  of  cognition  or  learning To a p p l y  a  language  be s u p p o s e d :  1988)  suggested  second  models  in  s t u d y c a n be  second  a p r o p o s a l as might  (see  off  g o i n g on  as non-human. to  as  resolution  study  n e u r o b i o l o g i c a l l y b a s e d p e r s p e c t i v e on l e a r n i n g learning  of  plasticity  human a s w e l l  such  and  level  i s s u e s under to  as  is that  what i s  degree  prove  just  and  u s e as an a n a l y t i c a l  understanding brain,  cognition  from the  some  carving  study of  problem of  elucidating  may  (Damasio,  My c o n t e n t i o n  learners  be o f  shown  on  it,  grounds t h a t the  low t o  instrument  in  which  second language  effects  level  incisive  handle  fundamental  of  processes  ones t o  f u n c t i o n i n g one must s t a r t w i t h t h e  phenomena (ibid.).  that  (Churchland,  perspective,  has  the  confirm  designations  in  decision-making  and  will  non-cognitive  emotion  "emotional  it  hunches"  c o m p l e t e l y g r o u n d l e s s from a b r a i n - o r i e n t a t e d recent  cognitive  d o e s , whether  our  view,  and  between  of  language language  l e a r n i n g have a l r e a d y been c o n s t r u c t e d . C o n n e c t i o n i s m , a f t e r  all,  is  type  in  e s s e n c e an  information  p r o c e s s i n g methodology of  e s p o u s e d by Cummins i n h i s c l a r i f i c a t i o n o f t h e proficiency group  (1984a,  1984b),  and, of  ( M c L a u g h l i n , Rossman,  and,  in  my  opinion,  nature  of  language  c o u r s e , by M c L a u g h l i n a n d h i s  & MacLeod, 1983).  superior  the  is  it  p r o v i d e s a more d e t a i l e d a c c o u n t i n g o f t h e m e c h a n i s m s b y w h i c h  the  brain  al.  (1983)  have  explanation  identified of  the  as  the  then, rise  missing  to  the  offer  and  since  formulation  there  of  appears  researchers  that  there  which  shed  some  will  lack  1991,  information  to  is  be  a  consensus  need  light  offered such  a language i s  will  as the  i n s i d e the head" of  86).  the  Cummins  My  intent,  d a t a which gave  on  for the  a  among  interaction  attempt  social status  a learner  learned.  Methodology 7  the  second  theoretical  to  "get  p.  processing in  the  factor  which  of  p r e m i s e s , one w h i c h i s b a s e d o n  of  linguistic  of  theoretical  the T h r e s h o l d H y p o t h e s i s as w e l l as  l i n g u i s t i c v a r i a b l e s i n the determination explanation  Edelsky et  Cummins'  an a l t e r n a t e e x p l a n a t i o n o f  c o n n e c t i o n i s t approach t o  And  the  (Cummins,  data which d i s p u t e or support i t s a  from  is  i n one o f h i s most r e c e n t p a p e r s t o u c h i n g  Threshold Hypothesis i s to  accounting which  literature,  h i m s e l f appears t o r e g r e t on  :  an  connectionism  different, that  processes information,  about  What  of  brain.  language  perspective social  and  academic achievement, clarify of  and t h e r e b y  a  how  a  language  nonmight  i n f l u e n c e how w e l l  The p r o b l e m b e i n g a d d r e s s e d i n t h i s certain  second  hypothesis learning  on  in  language the  researchers  cognitive  immersion  s t u d y i s t h e need i d e n t i f i e d for  a  consequences  of  situations  p r o p o s e d by Cummins, and t h e  than  goal of  the  a n h y p o t h e s i s b a s e d on a c o n n e c t i o n i s t  The m a j o r  questions formulated  at  the  more  acceptable  second  Threshold  study  i s to  approach to  by  language  Hypothesis  provide  such  learning.  the beginning of the  study are  as  follows:  1. 2.  Why d i d Cummins p r o p o s e t h e What  are  the  major  criticisms  H y p o t h e s i s and how v a l i d 3.  brain  at  the  Threshold  these? Threshold Hypothesis  i s t h i s model a s a r e p r e s e n t a t i o n  of  how  the  of  the  functions?  Why  was  mind/brain 5.  are  aimed  What model o f c o g n i t i o n u n d e r p i n s t h e  and how a d e q u a t e  4.  Threshold Hypothesis?  a  connectionist  approach  to  the  study  developed?  What d o e s c o n n e c t i o n i s m p r o p o s e a b o u t l e a r n i n g and  learning  processes i n the b r a i n ,  and how v a l i d a r e c o n n e c t i o n i s t m o d e l s  of  as  cognitive  function  these  are  manifested  in  models  of  learning? 6.  What w o u l d a c o n n e c t i o n i s t h y p o t h e s i s p r o p o s e w i t h  to  the  under 7.  cognitive immersion  What e v i d e n c e  consequences of  learning  a second  respect language  situations? is  there  to  8  support  this  new h y p o t h e s i s  in  the 8.  language r e s e a r c h  literature?  How d o e s t h i s new h y p o t h e s i s d e a l w i t h t h e  by  critics  with  power o f  the  9.  are  What  teaching of  As t h e  respect  to  the  adequacy  the  investigation  implications  of  progressed, i t to the  attention,  function?  how  does  it  q u e s t i o n s arose out of the  i n the  it  or  Hypothesis  importance of  from  a  (see  section  simplistic  methods  to  the  be  sought.  more The  considered  all  of  1.3.4  complexity  of  the  the  to  the  in  b i o l o g i c a l d a t a from a l l  this  (or  respect  l e v e l s of  9  learning  methodologies  empirical  with  1991),  science  of  brain  connectionist) since  it  investigation  is  of  the  o f Cummins•  studies  cognitive  ecology  neurocomputational  these  is dealt  formulation  natural  human  of  of  of connectionism.  and R e y n o l d s , of  other  nature  importance  on  the  i n one way  and  suffered  investigation  functioning,  t o the study of c o g n i t i v e f u n c t i o n ,  sensitive  promising  the  the  situations?  b i l i n g u a l i s m were i n a d e q u a t e  application  different orientation would  that  for  t h a t two  attention to  from c r i t i c i s m s o f  consequences of  another  immersion  The  s t u d i e s w h i c h made up t h e d a t a b a s e f o r t h e  cognitive  hypothesis  i s d e s c r i b e d i n c o n n e c t i o n i s m , and i t  was c l e a r  Threshold  explanatory  s t u d y : What i s t h e  s e c t i o n d i s c u s s i n g the v a l i d i t y  Because  this  became e v i d e n t  q u e s t i o n s were h i g h l y r e l e v a n t  p r o c e s s as i t  the  Threshold Hypothesis?  students i n second language  and  of  concerns r a i s e d  a  one w h i c h  function,  was  approach  was  constrained  of b r a i n  by  function,  and  incorporates  environmental glossary).  the  notion  of  circumstances  Due  designing v a l i d  to  the  thought  to  redundant.  studies,  therefore,  cognitive  valid  consequences of  accounting  of  consequences testable  of  a detailed cognitive  the  out  a  new  would  research  following  of  consequences  hypothesis  on  give the  2)  on  a  the  better  cognitive  more  readily  design  c h o s e n was  non-  steps:  of  Cummins' work  bilingualism  Threshold Hypothesis)  (with  with the  on  special goal  of t h i s  of  body  work. a  detailed  establishing occurs i n the 3)  more  be  e s t a b l i s h i n g s p e c i f i c c o n c e r n s as t o t h e v a l i d i t y of  was  empirical  itself  analyses  of  more  which would  available  and  meta-analysis  emphasis g i v e n t o t h e  in  consequences  t o employ a d i f f e r e n t ,  develop  already  Thus,  and c o m p r i s e d t h e  the  to  bilingualism,  (see  previously  cognitive  carrying  bilingualism  data  empirically.  empirical  1)  the  on  s t u d y b a s e d on p a s t t h e o r i z i n g  Before  base  cognition  definition  mentioned  seemed i m p o r t a n t  data  of  very  studies relating  a new e m p i r i c a l  empirically  its  difficulties  empirical  it  dependence  into  to bilingualism, be  the  analysis the  connectionism  validity  of  the  on  how  premises  goal  of  learning  from s e v e r a l d i s c i p l i n e s on l e a r n i n g  and l a n g u a g e l e a r n i n g  a c o n n e c t i o n i s t approach t o cognitive  its  with  brain.  a s y n t h e s i s of data  general,  of  consequences  in particular,  learning  of 10  second  into  consistent  an h y p o t h e s i s o f  language  learning  in  with the in  immersion 4)  a  situations.  reinterpretation  academic  consequences  hypothesis to i n the  The d a t a to  Hence,  see i f  existing  chosen f o r  answering the  learning,  of  the  of  for  its  research;  questions  In  general,  based  of  the  study  its  new found  ones  of  regarded  which  above. language  c o g n i t i v e c o n s e q u e n c e s ; b)  p s y c h o l o g i c a l studies of  than  pertinent  second  in general,  modelling  these d i s c i p l i n e s are  d)  in  attention  language.  as p a r a l l e l  overlap  expertise.  P e r h a p s t h e most u n i q u e a s p e c t o f t h i s a t t e m p t t o weave them t o g e t h e r  and l e a r n i n g  learning;  rather  in its  the  detailed  a)  knowledge  lies  on  and/or  p r e m i s e s c o u l d be  d i s c i p l i n e s r e s e a r c h e d were:  connectionist  a n d e)  cognitive  a n a l y s i s were t h o s e c o n s i d e r e d m o s t  n e u r o s c i e n t i f i c d a t a on b r a i n f u n c t i o n c)  the  literature.  e s p e c i a l l y with regards to  particular;  on  bilingualism  support  guiding  major  studies  in  strands  of  areas  of  their study,  in order  to  therefore, construct  a  i s t r o n g and b r o a d l y based h y p o t h e s i s o f of  second language  this  study  are  the  learning.  Other  following:  i)  the  c o g n i t i v e consequences  original  work t o  a meta-analysis  be  of  found  in  analyses  of  Cummins' work on t h e c o g n i t i v e c o n s e q u e n c e s o f b i l i n g u a l i s m ;  ii)  analysis  to  study of  of  the  validity  learning;  iii)  of  c o n n e c t i o n i s m as  the development  attention;  iv)  speculation  implicitly  in  connectionist  on  how  models  11  of  an  a working  attention of  approach  definition  is  learning;  an the of  represented and  v)  a  reinterpretation and/or  three  major  academic consequences of  Collier  The  of  (1987),  choice of  and D i a z  data  of  data  bilingualism,  design of  background i n  the  the  those  cognitive  pf  the  s t u d y were  Cummins,  undoubtedly  p h y s i c a l s c i e n c e s which  a r e h e a v i l y d e p e n d e n t on a n a l y s i s . No o t h e r of  on  (1985).  and t h e  i n f l u e n c e d b y my e a r l y  sets  approach to  the  l e a r n i n g was c o n s i d e r e d . My e x p e r i e n c e s a s a f o r e i g n  teacher  and l e a r n e r ,  cultures,  however,  acceptance  of  naturalistic  as w e l l have  the  been  validity  inquiry.  It  as e x p e r i e n c e s o f  is  influential  of  studies  in  to  in  language foreign  o p e n i n g my m i n d  based  interesting  living  study  on  note  the  methods  that,  in  to of  keeping  with the c o n n e c t i o n i s t approach, the T h r e s h o l d Hypothesis proposed b y Cummins was a l s o b o r n o u t o f t h e as  it  is  applied  in  s c i e n t i f i c research  psychological studies.  emerge between t h e l a t t e r h y p o t h e s i s and t h e study  do  not  therefore,  but  considered  Because the  from  differences  from d i f f e r e n c e s  relevant  interpretation  interest  stem  of  to  certain  the  in  The d i f f e r e n c e s  that  one d e v e l o p e d i n  this  in  research  c h o i c e s as t o  problem  tradition,  which data  investigated,  and  me,  learning  has  attention  is  it  may a p p e a r t h a t  been of  the  are  in  the  language r e s e a r c h s t u d i e s .  i n t e r a c t i o n o f a t t e n t i o n and l e a r n i n g i s o f  to  tradition  the  over-emphasized. utmost  Though  importance  t h e r e i s no d o u b t i n my mind t h a t o t h e r  12  influence  to  I  the  of do  particular  attention believe  learning  on  that  process,  f a c t o r s s u c h a s e m o t i o n and  motivation  to  discussion phenomena  learn  of are  are  the  a l s o extremely  nature  perceived  and  to  hypothesis  study for  of  discussing  of  the  where  implications  teaching,  it  the  implications is  merely  to  of  the  of  it  a  support c e r t a i n  The most  is  teaching  important  is  because  sensory process heavily language  learners  in  allocation  of  the  for  reduction in attention period of  language  dependent  learning  on a u d i t i o n  cognitive  learning  might  the  visual  will  system  low s p e e c h c o m p r e h e n s i o n i n t h e Shift  is  a  of  immersion multimodal  and v i s i o n ,  second  undergo a s h i f t  in  i n an i n c r e a s e  in  and  a l l o c a t i o n to the auditory  named t h i s h y p o t h e s i s t h e  second  connectionist hypothesis  immersion s i t u a t i o n s  to  any  The p u r p o s e  how c h a n g e s i n  i n f o r m a t i o n p r o c e s s i n g s t r a t e g y which w i l l r e s u l t attention  in  strategies.  prediction  that,  is  learned.  deal  the c o g n i t i v e consequences of second language l e a r n i n g i n situations  these  connectionist  does not  b r o u g h t a b o u t by i m m e r s i o n s e c o n d l a n g u a g e  the  attention  new h y p o t h e s i s  indicate  in  attention,  o r second language t e a c h i n g p r a c t i c e .  language t e a c h i n g strategy  discusses  of  Indeed,  l e a r n e d a n d how w e l l  second language  depth with f i r s t  functioning  be d e t e r m i n e r s  a l l o c a t e d a n d t h u s o f what i s  Though t h i s  important.  target  a  corresponding  system d u r i n g language.  I  the have  in Information Processing Strategy  Hypothesis.  Throughout t h i s  dissertation,  an e f f o r t  13  h a s b e e n made t o  maintain  consistency model,  of terminology.  hypothesis,  In t h e case o f terms  paradigm,  and h e u r i s t i c ,  p r o v i d e d i n t h e g l o s s a r y . On a l e s s f o r m a l as  an e x p l a n a t i o n  for a  depicting thevariables, their  dealing often  a momentary  with  meaning  of  usefulness ability  is  of theories  t o generate  relationships theory  view  models  machine  between  being  is  dynamic  of learning,  used  is  It  a  variables.  i n large  Evidence in  the  stricture  of testability  does  not apply  of stimulating  that  part  which  underlying  than  t o an h e u r i s t i c  meaning  employed s t r i c t l y a  problem  i s t o say,  o f an exemplary  problem  i n i t s mathematical  involving  a finite  series  14  based  whose  The term matrix"  i t refers to  consensus i n a given  s e n s e , i t encompasses t h e o r y  An  an h y p o t h e s i s . The  i s u s e d i n i t s b r o a d e s t meaning o f " d i s c i p l i n a r y  to professional  from  theory.  paradigm  narrower  on t h e i r  supports any  d i s c u s s i o n on a t o p i c .  1993, p . 1 4 1 ) ; t h a t  The  a r e drawn  i s that  In t h i s  which  with respect t o the  function  community.  a model  and i n v o l v e s p r e d i c t i o n s  b u t i s seen a s l e s s s t r u c t u r e d  subject  of  When  a l l times.  Thus h y p o t h e s e s  on t h e o r y ,  everything  i s taken  manner  however,  at  o r hypotheses  confidence  (see Hoyningen-Huene,  been  process.  i s hoped  clear  and models depends  i s a l s o drawn f r o m t h e o r y  heuristic  of a  be t e s t a b l e .  creates  a theory  A model  models.  predictions  and should  hypothesis  static  to actual model  level,  have  I n most i n s t a n c e s , a model i s i n t e n d e d t o  connectionist  refers  definitions  mechanisms, a n d c o n s t r u c t s o f a t h e o r y a n d  interrelationships.  represent  phenomenon.  such as theory,  research  a s w e l l a s i t s own  solution.  Algorithm  is  s e n s e o f a method o f s o l v i n g of steps.  An algorithm  is  therefore  b a s e d on m a t h e m a t i c a l  theory.  O t h e r t e r m s employed i n s p e c i f i c ways t h r o u g h o u t are  listed  i n the  General plan of  Chapter how  it  dissertation  glossary.  the  dissertation  examines Cummins' T h r e s h o l d H y p o t h e s i s , d e t a i l i n g  one  came  hypothesis, its  this  about,  whether  it  is  correctly  and i n v e s t i g a t i n g t h e v a l i d i t y  premises.  The  aim  here  is  to  classified  of c r i t i q u e s  display  the  researchers,  has r e c e i v e d a t  and a l s o t o  t h e hands o f  identify  as  an  levelled  at  complexity  c o n c e p t s b e h i n d t h e h y p o t h e s i s as w e l l as t h e v a r i e t y the c r i t i c i s m i t  first  other  of  and e x t e n t  conditions  cognition implicit this  In  thesis,  chapter  their  it  two,  validity  perspective  must  try  s p e c i f i c nodes o f  to  c o n c e r n among  the  t o the hypothesis i s of p a r t i c u l a r  c o n n e c t i o n i s m and i t s p r e m i s e s a r e examined sets  in  like  the  is  sought,  underpinnings,  manner.  scene  premises of connectionism r e l e v a n t  biological  Since  under  concept  of  importance  to  i s d i s c u s s e d i n some d e p t h .  which  classification  resolve.  of  second language  c r i t i c s t h a t any a l t e r n a t e t h e o r y o f s e c o n d l a n g u a g e l e a r n i n g immersion  the  and  to  then  for  particularly  b r a i n i s o r g a n i z e d and l e a r n s ,  i s given.  15  Following an  this a  investigated a  historical  investigation  discussion,  detailed with  its  rendering  respect  and  to  of  the  correct of  its  how  the  Since the a t t e n t i o n system  of  the  and  brain  is  since  seen t o  its  nature  characterized, identify and  be o f  its  importance t o  and  nature  is  learning  functioning also  are  examined  in  nodes o f c o n s e n s u s among r e s e a r c h e r s .  function  of  connectionist  machine  i n the  brain  yet  fully  not depth  in  Finally,  models  of  order  the  o f t h e c o n c e p t s upon w h i c h t h e y were c o n s t r u c t e d , a n d a o f how a t t e n t i o n m i g h t i s undertaken. presentation is,  The r a t i o n a l e of  firstly,  be r e p r e s e n t e d  the  for  underpinnings  of  into  l e a r n i n g as i t  i s u n d e r s t o o d by e d u c a t o r s ,  an  conceptual  connectionist  model  of  basis second  for  learning  great d e t a i l  of  levels  a s p e c t o f b r a i n f u n c t i o n i n g c a n be s t u d i e d and s t i l l  adequate  discussion  c o n n e c t i o n i s m and  t o make c l e a r t h e m u l t i p l i c i t y  at  language  in  which  be r e l e v a n t  construction learning  in  the  attention  and s e c o n d l y , t o  the  is  validity  i n t h e s e models of  entering  nature  learning  examined a s a means o f p r o v i d i n g e m p i r i c a l s u p p o r t f o r t h e  to  any to  develop of  a  immersion  situations.  Chapter  three  hypothesis  of  is  devoted  second  to  the  language  development  learning  in  of  a  connectionist  immersion  situations situations  b a s e d on t h e p r e m i s e s s e t o u t i n c h a p t e r  two.  Immersion  a r e f o c u s e d upon s p e c i f i c a l l y due t o  fact  that the  surrounding around  the  cognitive  immersion  hypothesis offered brain, which  learning  consequences  of  situations  of  elaborated  first as  various  and second language a  prelude  16  to  the  controversy  bilingualism  i s f o u n d e d on a g e n e r a l model o f  and models o f are  the  centres  sorts.  learning  learning,  development  The  in  the  all  of  of  the  hypothesis.  This  explanatory  power  academic second  can g i v e  achievement language  implications  The  hypothesis  greater  results  learners,  i s then  employed  insight  chapter,  second language l e a r n i n g  the  charges,  differential  and majority*  and  its  chapter  finally  group  relevance  and  three  areas  of  cognition  and t h e r e a l i t y  re-examines  four,  Cummins'  connectionist vision of  i n immersion s i t u a t i o n s w i t h t h e i n t e n t o f of,concern  analysis of the literature  model  the  how i t s  f o r minority*  T h r e s h o l d H y p o t h e s i s on t h e b a s i s o f t h i s  original  into  show  f o r second language e d u c a t i o n a r e d i s c u s s e d .  concluding  elucidating  to  that  17  identified  i n the  on t h e T h r e s h o l d H y p o t h e s i s ,  underpinning and n a t u r e  were  it,  "deficit"  of linguistic  hypothesis  thresholds.  Chapter 1. A CRITIQUE OF CUMMINS' THRESHOLD HYPOTHESIS  1.1  H i s t o r i c a l Perspective  From time immemorial,  t h e l e a r n i n g o f a language  o t h e r than t h e  mother tongue of the l e a r n e r has proved t o be a daunting t a s k , and, to t h i s day, i t remains one of the most d i f f i c u l t  feats of learning  t h a t can be accomplished. T h i s i s supposing, o f course, t h a t t h e language learner  i s t o be w e l l - l e a r n e d ; can use  communication  i t , not o n l y  i n the  that as  multiplicity  i s , learned  such  effective  means  an of  different  that the of  oral  communicative  s i t u a t i o n s t h a t one encounters w i t h i n a s o c i e t y , but a l s o r e a d and write  i t t o a l e v e l adequate  t o a c h i e v e w e l l a c a d e m i c a l l y i n an  e d u c a t i o n a l c u l t u r e which employs t h e language as i t s primary mode of  instruction.  In  many p a r t s o f t h e world where m u l t i l i n g u a l communities  encountered,  there  i s no  necessity  for this  kind  can be  of in-depth  knowledge o f more than one language. In t h e p a s t , p a r t i c u l a r l y i n c o l o n i a l times, t h e custom "official  language"  as the  o f t h e r u l i n g power was t o impose an language  of i n s t r u c t i o n  while other  languages, though indigenous and t h e r e f o r e more commonly  employed  i n everyday l i f e , were r e l e g a t e d t o second c l a s s s t a t u s as academic v e h i c l e s . Such was the case i n Hong Kong, where E n g l i s h was decreed the  language o f i n s t r u c t i o n though Cantonese was t h e language most  commonly spoken by the people. There, however, as elsewhere i n t h e 18  developing world, greater  status  is  reflection  of  that  the  swept  p o l i c i e s are  the  now b e i n g  rapidly  accorded to  upsurge of p r i d e  planet  in  changing and,  the  and  e n t h u s i a s m h a s somewhat a b a t e d w i t h t h e the developing countries that the the  international  economic  interdependent situation  In  America,  Essentially,  nation  the  Nations  proceeded  case of  business.  countries  in  interesting "colonizing"  to  majority of  on  note  on  the  of  that,  a  language  the in  which  they  language of  their  a c q u i r i n g employment  one  of  the  for  global  of  of  the  19  "  the  carrying  was  and  fairly  no o f f i c i a l institute  World",  to  in order  to  in  to  of  the  standard it  in  is  which  language  one.  then,  fitting  the  and  is  only  out  those  world,  the  colonizing  countries  adopted country  and g e n e r a l l y  of  scale,  the  there  "New  languages of  mirrored  hailed,  many  differently.  w o u l d become t h e  developed  originated,  to  on  national  was n e v e r deemed n e c e s s a r y t o  immigrants  of  increasingly  somewhat  purposes  attitude,  history  languages  policy since i t  updates  developed  the  Europe from which  the  part  least  becoming  Canada, n a t i o n s ,  for  This  on t h e  that  1993b.)  assumption t h a t  the  Today,  speak a t  is  recent  unimportant  language(s)  throughout  (For  to  a  culture  an a b s o l u t e n e c e s s i t y  that  situation  being  country's  incumbent  1993a,  the  as  in  legitimate  world  languages,  seventies.  c o l o n i z i n g powers d i s m i s s e d t h e  on t h e  or,  a  economically.  see Carey,  North  First  in  is  general,  language and  realization  ability  l a n g u a g e s o f power  survival  indigenous  in native  sixties  in  It  was  learn  the  be a s s u r e d  the  society,  and,  more  important  still,  to  ensure  b r o u g h t up s p e a k i n g t h e m a j o r i t y that  parents  language,  might  want  to  1984a,  chap.  5,  that  bilingualism).  The a t t i t u d e ,  speakers of linguistic  were  s p i t e of the  they  and  also  having often in  societal  assimilation  university  academic  has  they  If  degrees  they  as  s i g n i f i c a n t proportion of  more  to  immigrant  1991,  and o f  wanting  in  times, wealth  pp.  to  2-5).  nations  have  its  of  been  wanting culture.  financially,  the socioeconomic  result  wanting  considerable the  be  direct  recent  and  towards  t h e y were  echelons of a  the  achievement  appear  new c o u n t r y ,  lower  and,  in  and  of  came f r o m  nothing e l s e ,  were, u s u a l l y  changed  review  to  (see  was u n a b a s h e d l y o n e  immigrants  overwhelmingly  emerged f r o m t h e  status,  heritage  was p e r c e i v e d  (see T a y l o r ,  histories,  homeland,  their  comprehensive  between  language of t h e i r tended  was a c c e p t e d  b o t h e d u c a t i o n a l and s o c i e t a l ,  impressive  their  situation  a  f a c t t h a t many o f t h e  knowledge o f t h e  scale  children  "foreign languages", t h e r e f o r e , and c u l t u r a l  long  drawn  g e n e r a l l y viewed as "wanting".  But  their  were  academic problems f o r t h e c h i l d  for  relationships  children  language. Although i t  teach  source of p o t e n t i a l  Cummins,  with  their  t h i s was n o t e n c o u r a g e d i n g e n e r a l a s i t  be a m a j o r  In  that  of  their  low  education.  This  immigrants  with  now  making  up  a  population.  T h e p o l i c i e s w h i c h d e t e r m i n e d how i m m i g r a n t  and  later,  c h i l d r e n o f language m i n o r i t y c o m m u n i t i e s , would be t r e a t e d  within  the  school  s y s t e m , however,  were  !  children,  b a s e d on s t u d i e s c a r r i e d  20  out  in  the  first  half  of  methodologically detailed  above  Reynolds, still  the  twentieth  flawed, of  1991,  educators  for  plague the  and  recent  evaluation  academic achievement  of  century,  many  incorporated of  the  reviews  time of  the (see  some o f  of b i l i n g u a l  these groups of  and  communis,  Bilingualism, example,  it  was  admirably,  c i t e s J e n s e n ' s 1962 the  extent  bilingual] to  to  the unity  of  c h i l d r e n was  The l e v e l  a situation  w h i c h was  to  disadvantages  development",  some o f  "educational  1984a,  these  pp.  200  perception  of  feel of t h e i r  a  for  progress",  and  were  A s Cummins extreme.  studies to  opposite directions  personality'"  early  studies  language  have  learners  p e r c e p t i o n w h i c h was b a s e d on f i r s t (1991a, other  pp.  populations  and  (Jensen,  1962,  s i n c e been  academically  disadvantaged  in  while  21  society  even  ethnic they  are  [the  p.  which 136).  discredited, pervasive  at  hand o b s e r v a t i o n .  340-341),  minority  "He  according  i n t h a t t h e y were c o n s i s t e n t w i t h t h e  second  Carey  in  He  illustrate  h a d become o v e r b l o w n :  'pull  itself. in,  102-103).  statements  o f more t h a n  rhetoric  lingua  l a c k o f knowledge o f t h e  lead  of  consistently  could  the  these  t h e y were p o w e r f u l  by  that  may become s c h i z o p h r e n i c , f o r most b i l i n g u a l s ,  T h o u g h most  out  problems  said,  (Cummins,  biases and  bilingualism  Christophersen  threatens  the  were  1992,  of  review  which  Cziko,  generally,  development"  out  in  more  "intellectual  "personal brings  even  which  built  education).  f o u n d t o be l o w e r t h a n t h e m o n o l i n g u a l n o r m , s a i d t o be t h e c o n s e q u e n c e o f t h e i r  of  large, As  today  a  pointed  "immigrant  groups  are  immersed  in  usually mastering  their  second language," a s t a t e of  person  is  all  situation, groups  however, was t h a t t h e p o o r a c a d e m i c a c h i e v e m e n t o f  these  inordinate  States  which  students the  disabled"  as  poor  representation  "learning inequity  with  had  recently  not as  been  this  relationship  achievement,  normal  insidious  ability.  minority (Cummins,  adequately when  Oritz  to  1991,  case  pp.  academic  96-100),  pp.  addressed i n and  Yates of  led  the  found 300  in  1-2),  an  United  Hispanic  per  educators c a l l e d a t t e n t i o n to  between studies  bilingualism of  highly  for  achievement  cent  in  of  example, whole  and  low  successful or  to  anomalies  the  sub-cultures  academic  groups  (see  higher  than  such  as  the  ( s e e Cummins, 1 9 8 4 a ,  i n d e m o c r a t i c c o u n t r i e s s u c h as Canada and t h e of  an  category.  127-128) ,  S t a t e s where e q u a l i t y  to  students  1984a,  A s i a n - A m e r i c a n and A s i a n - C a n a d i a n c o m m u n i t i e s pp.  This  language  i n T e x a s o v e r r e p r e s e n t e d by a f a c t o r  Though some more r e f l e c t i v e  Hamers,  of  1983  was  cognitive  classrooms  learning d i s a b i l i t i e s  in  What  average this  equated  familiar."  w i t h which "the  about  was  too  affairs  United  o p p o r t u n i t y was a d v o c a t e d a n d t h o u g h t  to  i be a l r e a d y link  in  between  operation within the deficiency  in  language  a c h i e v e m e n t must h a v e seemed t h e In  s p i t e of  countries,  the  overall  however,  were  ability  only l o g i c a l  similarities  there  education systems, the and  academic  explanation.  i n the p o l i c i e s of  important  differences  f a c t t h a t Canada had been c o l o n i z e d by two n a t i o n s ,  22  poor  causal  these  due  to  two the  t h e B r i t i s h and  the  French  (see  development  of  Carey,  1991a,  governmental  for  policies  a  recent  in  the  United  C a n a d a ) . Though E n g l i s h e v e n t u a l l y  became t h e  Canada  and p o l i t i c a l  in  terms  Francophone  of  proliferation  population  education i n t h e i r  was  native  extensive  tongue,  as a second language, w h i l e  a second language. only  in  very  in  strokes.  instance, with  or  is  is,  either  at  parents,  home,  or  is  before  likely  language  of  the  to consider this  all  ( B a i n and Y u ,  Speaking  Canada he  states:  of  the  other  the  that  they  first  were  were  for dealt  treated  be t h a t  language  the  1987;  prevalence  of  Carey,  situation  23  of  of  i n the of  1991a). the  the  Even first their  Francophone  of  do  majority latter  Carey  rights  to  fluently  school,  How t h e s e  as  picture  homogeneous enough  o r a r e more f l u e n t  s t a n c e an i n f r i n g e m e n t  children.  according  t h a t many o f t h e s e c h i l d r e n e i t h e r  community due t o  environment  the  had  taught  wishes or s o c i e t a l norms.  still,  the  minorities  i n the  starting  in  received  c h i l d r e n who were  allophones.  parents'  fact  language at  where  linguistic  course, to paint  trends,  seems  worse  i n s p i t e of the  speak t h a t  their  of  English  it  their  language  languages l a r g e l y  No s o c i e t y  who were  but  and  communities  t h e mother t o n g u e o f a c h i l d i s c o n s i d e r e d t o  spoken  not  and  children  unclear,  according to today,  French  States  power,  and r e c e i v e d i n s t r u c t i o n  avoid exceptions t o the general bilingual  the  t h e E n g l i s h s p e a k i n g community  To s a y t h i s  broad  on  French, with English being  i n one o f t h e two o f f i c i a l  to geographical location,  dominant  enough,  second language i n s t r u c t i o n i n F r e n c h . Other were t a u g h t  update  in  appears minority  children  in  [T]he  [Canadian]  Rights l i m i t the these minority first  eligibility  of o f f i c i a l  l a n g u a g e programs t o  23 o f t h e C h a r t e r minority  children  t h o s e f o r whom a  l a n g u a g e was F r e n c h . T h i s b a s e s t h e s e m i n o r i t y  initiatives on  C o n s t i t u t i o n and a r t i c l e  their  sense,  n o t on t h e parents'  the  linguistic ability  childhood  criterion  affirmative  action  assimilation  and  for  language  of  reduce  cultural  is  or  erosion.  education  children In  political  reverse  (Carey,  for  parent's  experience.  admissibility  to  the  of  but this  and  an  linguistic  1991a,  pp.  345,  346)  Now a s i n t h e p a s t ,  therefore,  control of  linguistic  Though t h e  type  time  rarely  common t o  of  led to  find  formalised a high  what w o u l d  who w e r e r e a s o n a b l y  202-203), Quebec, Quebec. set  in  than  the in  protect  the  of  given  bilingualism,  now be t e r m e d  fluent  in  this rights  the  are  firmly  it  (normally  were e v i d e n t :  the  even  in  the more  bilinguals their  pp.  outside  those  the  ,  first)  1990,  inside  preferential  E n g l i s h speakers i n  at  was f a r  particularly  communities,  24  school  second (Lambert,  communities,  of  at  "dominant"  i n one l a n g u a g e  Anglophone  The r e a s o n s f o r  up t o  instruction  level  Francophone the  imperatives  policy.  those with a higher a b i l i t y but  political  rules  society,  and t h e n e c e s s i t y o f English  language  widely-sown therefore,  learning English for  community w a s ,  throughout  the  Q u e b e c , however,  a predominantly  E n g l i s h was t h e  language  its  i n f l u e n c e on l a n g u a g e p o l i c y m a k i n g . a  case  language scene.  not  which  o f numbers meant l i t t l e  political  The u p s h o t o f t h i s  the  1960s,  highly p o l i t i c a l  familiar  w i t h t h e a c a d e m i c and " c o g n i t i v e " e f f e c t s much  more  speaking counterparts wonder,  then,  that  p.  Francophone  extensive with a l l  the  l o g i c on t h e s e m a t t e r s  that  imperatives  to  had  at  Once a g a i n ,  respect  having  was  in  first  of  than  came f r o m t h i s  quarter  dominate  the with very  English  ability.  to  and  bilingualism, their  bilingual  serious challenge  exert  situation  of  time  was,  were  in  which  which  this  educators  experience  levels  and  surprisingly  Quebec s o v e r e i g n t y movement b e g a n t o  in  language  more numerous  and,  power u n t i l  rising tide  is,  the  far  French speaking p r o v i n c e ,  the  still  of  all,  The w e i g h t  The  1  provinces  had h i g h e r s t a t u s .  of  after  economic s u r v i v a l .  the  Small  prevailing  (see R e y n o l d s ,  1991,  147).  Wallace  L a m b e r t was a p r i m e mover  the c o g n i t i v e e f f e c t s ,  if  any,  of  i n the  effort  bilingualism.  In  to  make s e n s e o f  a recent  review  It i s i n t e r e s t i n g t o note t h a t t h i s r e l a t i n g of b i l i n g u a l i s m t o e c o n o m i c a d v a n t a g e s h a s t a k e n on an i n t r i g u i n g t w i s t . T a y l o r (1991) r e p o r t s t h a t , i n a r e c e n t s u r v e y , s p e a k e r s o f "heritage l a n g u a g e s " i n D e t r o i t were s t i l l o f t h e o p i n i o n t h a t " b i l i n g u a l i s m was a s s o c i a t e d w i t h e c o n o m i c a d v a n c e m e n t i n terms of school p e r f o r m a n c e a n d j o b o p p o r t u n i t y . T h u s , maintaining the heritage language [ i t a l i c s added] was l i n k e d d i r e c t l y t o b r e a d a n d b u t t e r i s s u e s , not only to the q u a l i t y of s o c i a l r e l a t i o n s h i p s " (p.10). T a y l o r notes t h a t the reasons f o r t h i s p e r c e i v e d l i n k are u n c l e a r , b u t may be r e l a t e d t o s o c i o - e c o n o m i c p r e s s u r e s b r o u g h t on by e x c l u s i o n from t h e dominant g r o u p . 1  25  of  the  issues  We  [at  (Lambert,  McGill  measurement  1990),  he comments: '  University]  of  started  proficiency  i n two  with  languages,  r e s e a r c h group comprised mainly w i l d l y continually as  drifted  inextricably  ones.... though  1962,  a  validity  of  the  research is  the  to  fields  education"  (Reynolds,  public  sector  became  known  1972).  It  in as  St.  was i n i t i a t e d a t  of  ...  Their  French r e f l e c t e d environment  the  -  their  and  Lambert  more  concern about the p o l i t i c a l  and  profound bilingual  along with  Tucker, in  study  (Lambert  the  between  "has had a  influential  experiment  children  more  questioned  i m m e r s i o n programme  highly  urging  we  even  and  relationship  and l a t e r ,  and  the  which  Tucker,  of  English-speaking parents  c o n c e r n was t h a t French  and  language  Lambert  thinkers,  persist,  psycholinguistics  another  because our  social-psychology  issues  a study which  146),  first  Canada, the  p.  the  201-202)  t h a t d a t e on t h e  of  1991,  e s t a b l i s h e d the  Peal  the  evolve  (pp.  by  and i n t e l l i g e n c e , the  that  about  i s s u e t o what we saw  usually  approaches  paper  findings  on  group  matters,  but  divergent  proficiency  accumulated,  influence  a  related  landmark  bilingualism  Lambert  the  What s u r p r i s e s me i s  information  In  off  concerns  in  Quebec whose  become h i g h l y  their  children's  common  proficient  in  abilities  in  and e c o n o m i c r e a l i t i e s  of  their  t h a t F r e n c h was b e i n g i n c r e a s i n g l y e m p h a s i z e d a s  26  the  language o f work,  langue de travail  as t h e o f f i c i a l 1982,  The  p.  is  answer t h e y of  Lambert  and T u c k e r  costly  in  terms  which  they  addressed  of  d i s c o v e r e d was t h a t  students  i n Quebec.  (Swain  capabilities,  intellectual which they  intellectual  development.  i t was n o t ; t h e v e r y  chose  to  to  have  participate  consequences as a r e s u l t  five  years,  we a r e  program has r e s u l t e d (i.e.,  arithmetic)  in  select this  The group  special  u s e d t o measure  no n e g a t i v e  linguistic  of the fluent  satisfied  i n no n a t i v e  deficit  to read,  competently  In f a c t , write,  as  or  bilingualism  apparent  personal  developed  a  number  Experimental  o f any s o r t ,  attributable  understand, instructed  to  matter nor i s  participation  p u p i l s a p p e a r t o be and u s e E n g l i s h as in  the  conventional  D u r i n g t h e same p e r i o d o f t i m e a n d w i t h no or  academic  competence  in  French  that  understanding traditional  speak,  the  language o r s u b j e c t  the Experimental  youngsters  manner v i a E n g l i s h .  that  or retardation  any c o g n i t i v e r e t a r d a t i o n  i n t h e program. able  suffered  being  developed:  After  there  & Lapkin,  was w h e t h e r  programme were f o u n d , a c c o r d i n g t o t h e i n s t r u m e n t s these  legalized  1)  question  bilingual  a n d i n d e e d , h a s s i n c e become  costs,  reading,  the  children  writing,  English  have  s p e a k i n g , and  pupils  following  a  F r e n c h - a s - a - S e c o n d - L a n g u a g e p r o g r a m f o r t h e same  of years  could never  27  match.  (Lambert  & T u c k e r , 1972,  p.152)  As Carey  (1991a) p o i n t s o u t ,  unusual.  Indeed,  it is  was  "a  results  s u c h a s t h e s e were more  precedent  possible to  in  educational  history  suggest that  it  non-dominant  language without e n c o u n t e r i n g a c o s t a c a d e m i c a l l y  terms  of  the  content  that,  at  this  time  bilingualism government's  being mastered"  in  and  biculturalism  l i n g u i s t i c and c u l t u r a l  "politically  (p.  336).  Canadian h i s t o r y ,  concern over  w e l l underway,  h a v e an e d u c a t i o n v i a  than  by  in  interest  to  promote  the  federal to  s t a t u s w i t h i n t h e F r a n c o p h o n e community was  for  the  the  era.  generalizability  immersion  programme  to  due the  the  s t u d y were  Though  questioned the  population,  of  r i s i n g d i s s a t i s f a c t i o n with respect  experiment  student  is  a second or  movement  initiated  hence t h e c o n c l u s i o n s o f correct"  the  It  to  unique  strong parental  of  undoubtedly  critiques the  of  the  f i n d i n g s of  characteristics  socio-  economic s t a t u s o f t h e g r o u p , t h e d e d i c a t i o n o f t h e t e a c h i n g  staff,  of the p a r t i c i p a t i n g objections teaching  (see  students,  MacNab,  screening of the  the  validity  Lambert's of  to the  Reynolds  monograph,  there  its  of  core,  the  ability  (1991)  notes been  28  the  the  in  scope  importance  of  c o g n i t i v e consequences  that, over  language  and r e s e a r c h  Commenting on t h e  study of  have  mind-set  focused around t e s t i n g  these r e s u l t s .  contribution  bilingualism,  Lambert  of  the  shaken t o  b o t h Canada and t h e U n i t e d S t a t e s of  language  t o m e n t i o n a few o f t h e more s e r i o u s  1979),  community h a d b e e n  the  the  high  r e s e a r c h d e s i g n p r o b l e m s , and t h e  support,  of  the  " s i n c e the  seven  dozen  Peal  and  studies,  reviews,  and  cognitive  functioning"  The  most  book  telling  chapters (p.  on  of  the  educational  minority  g r o u p c h i l d r e n whose p a r e n t s  These c h i l d r e n ,  language a t  immigrant  children,  linguistic  ability  in  but  system . 2  education c o u l d not answer  to  both  the  i n and o f  proposed t h a t first  itself  fact  such a  in  a n outcome w h i c h  linguistic  ability  explanation,  considerations  c o u l d not  tell  the  second  immersion  for  the  results? that  these c h i l d r e n ,  s u p p l a n t e d b y a more  academic was  language  suggested  to  1984a,  p.  story;  the  socially was  of  the  a c q u i s i t i o n of  the  the  a general  allowing  the  It  achievement.  whole  in  the  Lambert  (Cummins,  the  progressed through of  general,  both s e t s of  that,  at  be d e f i c i e n t  explain  could lead  Lambert  language  not  s o c i a l circumstance,  and p o o r  status  were  l a n g u a g e c o u l d o c c u r more r a p i d l y t h a n t h e  second,  this  in  and,  as they  criticisms,  language  immersion  socio-economic  were immersed i n  practice  l a n g u a g e was b e i n g g r a d u a l l y second  on  programme  the  spoke a h e r i t a g e  languages,  d i s c r e p a n c y m i g h t be due t o t h e  prestigious  low  were commonly f o u n d t o  Surely  these  language  mother t o n g u e a t home a s d i d  be a c h i e v i n g a c a d e m i c a l l y  education  first  or  was a r g u e d ,  s c h o o l and spoke t h e i r  "immersion"  seen to  it  bilingualism  circumstances of  with  In  of  of  immersion  classes  home.  those  effects  147).  criticisms  a d v o c a t e s compared t h e  the  106). decline  degradation In  that at  of  forwarding linguistic  a minimum,  the  I t s h o u l d be remembered, h o w e v e r , t h a t c e r t a i n s u b - g r o u p s s u c h a s t h e A s i a n - C a n a d i a n and - A m e r i c a n c o m m u n i t i e s w e r e an exception to t h i s r u l e . 2  29  social  status  of  the  languages  concerned  a c c o u n t a s an i n t e r v e n i n g  variable  The p r o t e s t s  were  research  sceptics  results  constitute could,  of  supporting  1984a,  to  be  i n how w e l l t h e y w e r e  thus  the  ignored  notion  or  that  bring  cognitive pp.  about  subtle  flexibility  105-106;  parents  who  cognitively  Hamers,  didn't  enriching  flexibility' (Carey,  s h o u l d be  1993a,  p.  1991,  to  pp.  enrol  advantages  accumulate 130-131).  their  programs liable  5) .  Threshold Hypothesis  Initially  It  to  was  (Cummins,  (Cummins,  1976),  c o n t r a d i c t i o n between appeared  to  bilingualism  (see  which  the  suggest and  an  effort  [first  language]  I  studies,  suggested that  I  bilinguals  neglect!" these  proposed the  was c o n c e r n e d w i t h t h e  findings  and L2  by  new  1991):  recent  manifested  claim  'cognitive  reconcile  t h a t Cummins f i r s t  of  cognitive  more  to  one  these  produced  as  Cummins,  be c h a r g e d w i t h c h i l d  in  and  such  as t o  in  as  could  Eventually,  children  in  empirical  deficits studies  b i l i n g u a l i s m with cognitive advantages. Ll  away  bilingualism  cognitive  began  opposing bodies of evidence, t h e n ,  of  into  learned.  explained  a d v o c a t e o f t h e a d v a n t a g e s o f b i l i n g u a l i s m "went s o f a r that  taken  a p o s i t i v e f o r c e i n c h i l d r e n ' s academic development  moreover,  greater  had  studies  resulting that  there  of  may be  these  from  patterns  development  two  threshold  types  of  levels  of  l i n g u i s t i c competence t h a t b i l i n g u a l c h i l d r e n must a t t a i n  30  that  associated  B a s e d on t h e  [second language] each  apparent  both  i  in  order  to  avoid  potentially influence lower  cognitive  beneficial their  and  aspects  cognitive  higher  disadvantages of  becoming  functioning.  thresholds  bilingual  between  subtractive  acquisition contexts,  The T h r e s h o l d H y p o t h e s i s , t h e r e f o r e , link to  between make  assumption, Cummins  Special  of  the  though i t  was  variables  (p.  acutely  in  was v e r y aware  that  of  the  Education,  Cummins  possibility with  In  (1984a)  of  cognitive ...  types  of  accepted a causal  f u n c t i o n i n g and on  the  attempted  basis  of  that  f r o m h i s own r e s e a r c h  interference  relationship.  to  76)  data  evident  the  bilingual  additive  essentially  conflicting  allow  linked to Lambert's  and  b i l i n g u a l i s m and c o g n i t i v e  sense  The  associated  d i s a d v a n t a g e s and a d v a n t a g e s was l a t e r distinction  and  his  of  text  states,  that  sociological  Bilingualism  "it  is  a  and  fallacy  to  r e g a r d p s y c h o - e d u c a t i o n a l f a c t o r s a s i n any s e n s e an e x p l a n a t i o n  of  i  the  [minority]  on t o  elaborate  variables, academic concern  better  that,  academic problems"  which "mediate"  to  educators students,"  and  generalizations area"  also  p.  92),  but l a t e r  it  to  is  also  those  that  specify  more  relevant  to  He f u r t h e r 31  are  assessment  necessary to  interactions  127).  goes  process"  s o c i a l and e d u c a t i o n a l v a r i a b l e s  concerned with  t h a t are  (ibid.,  the  "are  understand t h e i r  variables  (p.  because p s y c h o - e d u c a t i o n a l " c h i l d  achievement,  bilingual  this  students'  explore  with  of  direct  and  pedagogy  of  their  nature  "to  s o c i a l and  precisely  most  the  educational theoretical  educational policy-making clarifies  in  his rationale  in for  pursuing this  This  particular  analysis  bilingual  suggests  children  important  psycho-educational path  that  attain  intervening  the  in  levels  their  variable  two  it  has  t h r e s h o l d l e v e l s of  been  follows:  of  proficiency  languages  mediating  b i l i n g u a l i s m on c h i l d r e n ' s c o g n i t i v e Specifically,  as  the  effects  and a c a d e m i c  hypothesised  that  may b e  an of  development.  there  linguistic proficiency bilingual  may  be  children  must a t t a i n i n o r d e r t o a v o i d c o g n i t i v e d e f i c i t s  and a l l o w  the  potentially  bilingual  to  influence that  beneficial  cognitive  those  influence  growth.  aspects cognitive  until  children  level  of  have  of  form  in  of  input  of  the  thresholds  ...  of  unlikely  available  proficiency effects;  bilingual  likely  would  data of be  a  effect  threshold  Similarly,  proficiency  long-term  interaction  to  be  that is  lower  languages,  seems t o  that  there  threshold  sufficient  might  be  both  impoverished.  to  be  necessary  most  are  two  level  avoid  but the attainment of a second, h i g h e r  proficiency  if  of  through these is  positively  come i n t o  low l e v e l  hypothesis  The a t t a i n m e n t  to  second language.  and o u t p u t ,  the  might  minimum o r  languages, t h e i r  threshold  with  negative  the  that  a certain  academic environment  consistent  bilingual  are  c h i l d r e n a t t a i n only a very  with their  The  becoming  The t h r e s h o l d h y p o t h e s i s assumes  attained  i n one o r b o t h o f t h e i r  i n terms  of  bilingualism  growth  proficiency  bilingual  aspects  to  of any  level  lead  to  a c c e l e r a t e d c o g n i t i v e growth,  (ibid.,  To t h i s h y p o t h e s i s was added a few y e a r s Hypothesis.  This  addition  p.  later  incorporated  the  107)  the  Interdependence  growing  number  s t u d i e s on b i l i n g u a l e d u c a t i o n i n b o t h Canada and t h e U n i t e d which  supported  minority of  Lambert's  contention  language e n t a i l e d  the majority  Hypothesis  language.  that  education  no a d v e r s e e f f e c t s  for  Expressed formally,  the  the  through  in  provided or  (Cummins,  Lx,  transfer  there  environment) 1987,  The i m p l i c a t i o n o f t h e  Interdependence  p.  is :  of  this  adequate  proficiency  exposure  and a d e q u a t e  in  to  motivation  Ly to  promoting  to  Ly  will  (either learn  in Ly.  199)  Interdependence  Hypothesis i s that there  a common u n d e r l y i n g l a n g u a g e p r o f i c i e n c y u p o n w h i c h b o t h t h e and s e c o n d languages can draw.  This hypothesis,  t h e T h r e s h o l d H y p o t h e s i s became t h e theoretical  a  states:  proficiency  school  States  development  To t h e e x t e n t t h a t i n s t r u c t i o n i n L x i s e f f e c t i v e  occur  of  foundations for  e d i f i c e s c o n s t r u c t e d by Cummins i n t h e  33  then, the  is  first  along  with  subsequent  following  years.  1.2  An E x a m i n a t i o n o f  the V a l i d i t y  of  the  C l a s s i f i c a t i o n of  the  T h r e s h o l d Hypothesis as an H y p o t h e s i s  In  the Threshold Hypothesis, i t  causal  relationship  cognitive  ability  b e i n g from the a certain  between  of  the  i s proposed t h a t there i s a  the  learner,  degree of  minimum t h r e s h o l d l e v e l  unilingual  norm,  while  d e v e l o p m e n t w i l l be e n t e r e d negative  cognitive  bilingualism  the  of  into  a  In  his  norm w i l l  delineation  that  be  definition  of  and degree  of  threshold (Oimmins, a  either  "general  of  1984a, p .  flexibility,"  the  threshold,  of  cognitive capability  "academic  "divergent  intellectual  by  a  or  and  cognitive  •creative'  development."  d i v e r s e and l o o s e l y r e l a t e d accurately  single  however,  some  It  global  a  34  is  of  to  period  positive  of nor  level  of  proficiency  i n the  the  learner.  cognitive the of  his  no  ability  features  of  a  statements  c a n be c o n s t r u e d a s skills,"  "cognitive  abilities,"  seems u n l i k e l y  construct  learner  Cummins g i v e s  thinking  group o f a b i l i t i e s  Below  as compared t o  themselves  From  causality  the  threshold  n o r d o e s he d e f i n e  bilingualism. 105),  As  two m a i n v a r i a b l e s ,  bilingualism,  level  conglomerate  of  hypothesis,  the  when c o m p a r e d  accrued.  second upper  the  the  d u r i n g which n e i t h e r  will  and  ability.  bilingualism,  begin to manifest  of  the  cognitive  w i l l be r e a c h e d beyond w h i c h c o g n i t i v e b e n e f i t s unilingual  of  cognitive effects  above  benefits  increases,  of  bilingualism  direction  bilingualism to  expected to experience negative the  degree  direct,  that  and  such a  c o u l d be  represented  labelled  "cognitive  ability," i n the  e s p e c i a l l y when t h e m e a s u r e s o f  various  support  intelligence  the  himself  Threshold  used  Intelligence  the  test  as  Utility  (1963)  of  Reference  fluency,  flexibility  Kogan's  particular That  No  Patterns  far  given this  the  for  example, the  purporting  French,  a  put  Kuhlmann  Finch  and  Ekstrom  measure as  to  be  having  difficulty  cognitive  ability  of  cognition  as degree  of  by Cummins i n  (see  a medley o f a l l tests.  Even i f  doubt  that  it  reading a b i l i t y , of these of the  the  such  latter  is  scored of  for  Wallach  of  non-verbal  to  why  than  deciding  i s hardly  these others.  on  which  surprising,  phenomena g r o u p e d u n d e r  concerned,  elaboration  s h o u l d be m e a s u r e d , whether  written fluency,  Price  the  Introduction).  bilingualism his  general  and  Factors  forward  to  (1977)  and an a d a p t a t i o n as  out  Cummins  ability  Cognitive  test was  study  verbal  given the very broad range of  definition  a  subtests  s u b t e s t s were c o n s i d e r e d more a p p r o p r i a t e  measures t o u s e t o r e f l e c t  As  of  from  Tests  rationale  Cummins a p p e a r s  however,  for  and o r i g i n a l i t y ,  (1965)  intelligence.  Test  In  measures:  indicators  the  Kit  "kits."  following  Test  comprising various  hypothesis,  reasoning,  and  used  s t u d i e s t h e r e s u l t s o f w h i c h prompted Cummins t o p r o p o s e h i s  h y p o t h e s i s were e q u a l l y d i s p a r a t e , of  cognitive variables  of  the  no  indication  hypothesis  as t o  w o u l d be d e p e n d e n t on v e r b a l  is how or  conversational s k i l l s , or perhaps type  seen i n s t a n d a r d i z e d  s u g g e s t i o n were u s e d ,  an  assessment  offers  language p r o f i c i e n c y  (Edelsky et  al.,  35  an  1983).  there  accurate  language  i s reason  to  measure  of  T h e m e a s u r e s Cummins  u s e d i n h i s 1977  s t u d y , w h i c h were a d a p t e d  P e a l and L a m b e r t , shown by t h e  were d i r e c t e d  student  since  of  balance,  they  are  assessing the  degree  The r e l i a b i l i t y however,  dependent  can  on  a)  of  also  a  these be  word  tests  called  a  subjective  balance. on t h e  self-rating  and  c)  a  question  test  which  languages,  teacher  rating  A c o m p o s i t e b a l a n c e s c o r e was f o r m e d b y c o m b i n i n g  t h r e e measures o f  attempt  is  being  measure  of  degree  made  t h a t make up t h e in  test,  terms  of  of  balance.  at  obtaining  bilingualism,  conceptual  of  onset  of  bilingualism, certain  tautology  (see  Hypothesis  which  section  nature  of  both  and  the  1.3.2),  if  reliable  ingredients  reproducibility.  These  of  and  effects  would  difficult  an  desired  defined  cognitive  scores  be  nebulous n o t i o n  is  of  comprehensive  and  of  c a n be s e e n t h a t  s c o r e l e a v e much t o  clarity  levels  extremely  a the  composite balance  c o n s i d e r a t i o n s combined w i t h t h e level  Although i t  the  accurate  into  i n both  by  balance  as  association  a p p e a r s t o compare o n l y s t o r e d l e x i c a l knowledge b)  of  b u t c o u l d o s t e n s i b l y be employed t o a s s e s s  degree of b i l i n g u a l i s m . measures  at  from t h o s e p i o n e e r e d  "threshold"  proven  and  render  not  a  is  the  by  the  thus  a  Threshold  impossible  to  test  empirically.  In  t h i s penury of d e f i n i t i o n  Hypothesis  can  for  sense,  provisional  that  are  in  to  seen  required a  it  be  of  to  be t e r m e d  its  be  lacking  with  the  from  known  36  which  facts,  the  Threshold  conceptual  an " h y p o t h e s i s " t a k e n  supposition  accordance  constructs, then,  to  and  in  draw which  clarity  its  strong  conclusions serve  as  a  starting-point disproved  f o r further  investigation  and an enduring  theory  appears t o have r e a c h e d t h i s 1991,  by which  arrived  at.  it  may  Cummins  conclusion i n recent  times  be  himself  (Cummins,  p p . 83 and 8 5 ) :  Of t h e t h r e e t h e o r e t i c a l  constructs, the threshold hypothesis  i s c l e a r l y t h e most s p e c u l a t i v e and a l s o t h e most d i f f i c u l t t o test  i n any p r e c i s e  s e r v e a heuristic possible  in  in  Initially,  added]  patterns  elucidating  regarded, added]  proficiency"  the precise  Thus,  bilingual  I n view  point,  and o p e r a t i o n a l i z i n g itself  nature  as primarily  research t o explore  of bilingual  students'  Since t h e nature  specified,  [Cummins'  referring  the  i n a n y p r e c i s e way  of  the  progress  hypothesized  neither  [italics  therelationship proficiency  between i n two  implications of different  of thehypothesized thresholds are  version  or Diaz'  (1985)]  to  "heuristic  the  a heuristic  emerging  l a n g u a g e s and t h e p o s s i b l e c o g n i t i v e patterns.  of the  t h e p o s i t i n g o f s p e c i f i c t h r e s h o l d s must b e  at this  t o orient  aspects  In  of  i t i s probably u n r e a l i s t i c t o expect s i g n i f i c a n t  thresholds.  not  was i n t e n d e d t o  consequences....  conceptualizing  o f "language  it  function i n highlighting the  between  and c o g n i t i v e  difficulties  ...,  [italics  relationships  development  nature  manner.  of the threshold  can be f a l s i f i e d  at this  Threshold  H y p o t h e s i s , which he does i n s e v e r a l o f h i s p u b l i c a t i o n s  including  i  of  level.  the  37  function"  hypothesis  those i n which the h y p o t h e s i s i s that  it  is  "primarily  reasonable  may  interest  a heuristic,"  classification  heuristic  be  first  defined  a s a means o f  of  Cummins i s  his  as  an  argument  furthering  has  indeed  interest  w i t h i n the  which the  To  that  as  the  might  level  of  be  inquiry  What m i g h t q u a l i f y  that  at  of  of  the  of  however,  a theoretical  at  which  the  hypothesis at might  degree  c o u l d be s a i d t h a t t h e  Threshold  testability  is  a  conceptualization. critiques.  In  theoretical continue  to  Hypothesis direct That  is,  is  consideration  propositions), be  applied  too  the  not  of  research to  this  the 38  Hypothesis  so s e r i o u s  the  a  particular  i s dependent  level  Thus,  of  of  on  is  sought.  of  general  generalization and  of  that  its  difficulty the  theoretical generalization  term  Threshold  its  overly  i s too susceptible to  therefore, to  the  degree  great,  consequence it  since  be c o n s i d e r e d h o p e l e s s l y  neuropsychological.  sought. the  the  a fact  information  i  f o r example,  is  since  falsifying  to  by  classify  Threshold  proposition  c l a s s i f i c a t i o n i s strongly related It  stimulate  d i s c u s s i o n and  an h e u r i s t i c  supposed,  as a t e s t a b l e  psychological inquiry, imprecise  to  an  attest.  classification  c l a s s i f i c a t i o n given to the  to  w o u l d seem a p p r o p r i a t e ,  deal  section w i l l  s h o u l d be downgraded t o matter  intended  that  second language r e s e a r c h community,  following  suggest  Given  investigation,  encouraged a g r e a t  concluding  a p p r o a c h i n g a more  "hypothesis."  T h r e s h o l d H y p o t h e s i s as an h e u r i s t i c it  p r o p o s e d , and i n  sought lack  of  general  deconstructive  (which  dogs  "hypothesis"  Hypothesis  on  all will the  understanding  that,  rather  c o n c e i v e d a s more o f  to  (Kaplan,  that of  an  a  "test  hypothesis,"  it  is  to  a " w o r k i n g h y p o t h e s i s , " one w h i c h s e r v e s  g u i d e and o r g a n i z e t h e on w i t h "  than  1964,  investigation, p.88),  p r o v i d i n g us something t o  s i n c e t h i s term i s c l o s e r i n  heuristic.  39  be "to go  meaning  1.3 Review of the Critiques of Cummins' Threshold Hypothesis  1.3.1 Introduction As  Cummins h i m s e l f  theoretical  constructs b u i l t  and c o n t r o v e r s i a l " of  this  has noted,  (Cummins,  h a s been  the Threshold  Hypothesis  thereupon have been " b o t h  influential  1991, p . 7 5 ) . The n a t u r a l  consequence  critical  assessment  of  the  a d v o c a t e s and o p p o n e n t s . V e r y few o f t h e c r i t i c s one a s p e c t o f t h e o v e r a l l as  a separate  entity,  work a s a r e l a t e d  theory,  and  instead  undoubtedly  (1984, p . 4 4 ) , f o r e x a m p l e ,  work  from  both  have t r e a t e d  only  such as t h e Threshold H y p o t h e s i s ,  preferring  whole,  and t h e  t o s e e a l l o f Cummins'  a valid  perspective.  Troike  n o t e s t h a t Cummins a l o n g w i t h Toukomaa  Skutnabb-Kangas i  have suggested t h a t  i  '  lower and higher thresholds o f p r o f i c i e n c y  s h o u l d be r e c o g n i z e d , w i t h t h e l o w e r t h r e s h o l d b e i n g  minimally  adequate  threshold  f o r non-academic p u r p o s e s , and t h e h i g h e r  b e i n g a p r e c o n d i t i o n f o r academic s u c c e s s . w o u l d p r e s u m a b l y have some s i m i l a r i t y since  called  'basic  interpersonal  The lower  threshold  t o what Cummins . . . h a s communication  skills'  (BICS).  The u p p e r t h r e s h o l d ,  then> a p p e a r s c l o s e l y r e l a t e d  •"cognitive/academic other  language p r o f i c i e n c y '  a s p e c t s o f language  academic achievement"  proficiency,  (ibid.,  p.44).  40  to a  postulated  (CALP), d i f f e r i n g  which  forms  As a r e s u l t  from  the basis for  of critiques  of  t h e s e c o n s t r u c t s , Cummins (1984b)  "language  proficiency"  "continuums".  The f i r s t  of  support  contextual  subsequently proposed that  can is  be  a continuum r e l a t i n g  available  m e a n i n g . The extremes o f t h i s o f  The  for  along to  expressing or  the  versus  vertical  two range  receiving  continuum are d e s c r i b e d i n  "context-embedded"  communication....  conceptualised  terms  "context-reduced"  continuum  is  intended  to  address the developmental a s p e c t s of communicative p r o f i c i e n c y i n terms of the degree of a c t i v e task  These  or a c t i v i t y ,  continua  graphically  It  is  are  (pp.  viewed  to  constructs in  one  will  focus  Hypothesis,  because,  touching  the  proposals.  concepts  that  will  be  at  intersecting  to  It  allows be  the  the  a review more  as  and  are  the  represented  interrelatedness of  the  narrowly  mentioned  is much  of  back  on  issues relevant  deal  41  with  this  onto  the  such as  the  of  Cummins'  Threshold  the  the  this  critiques  entirety  interrelatedness  criticism the  underpinning to  only  many  Throughout t h i s r e v i e w ;  larger  c o n s i d e r e d as  the  of  critiques  above,  precisely  extrapolated  w h i c h g a v e them b i r t h . directed  as  Threshold Hypothesis  Cummins'  constructs  in  12-13)  recognize  theoretical  on  involvement  as a g r i d .  important  which  cognitive  aimed  at  of of  later  original  proposals  therefore,  criticism  the  later  constructs  Threshold Hypothesis.  It  s h o u l d a l s o be n o t e d t h a t ,  due t o  the  enormous amount o f  t h a t t h e work h a s spawned, o n l y t h e most i m p o r t a n t referred of  g i v e comprehensive i n s i g h t theoretical  achievement,  but  critiques  his  academic  In  of  those  not  into  the  stance to  theoretical  types of  on  conduct  The i n t e n t ,  is  to  c r i t i c i s m s i n v o k e d by  bilingualism an  then,  be  and  all-inclusive  constructs relating  academic  synthesis  of  bilingualism  to  achievement.  general,  conceptual, difficult  critiques,  t o b y Cummins h i m s e l f and t h o s e j u d g e d by t h e a u t h o r t o  s i g n i f i c a n c e , have been s u r v e y e d h e r e .  Cummins*  research  at  b e made f o r  the  criticisms  fall  into  three  p h i l o s o p h i c a l , and a n a l y t i c a l times the  to  tease  sake of  these apart,  basic  categories:  c o n c e r n s . Though i t an a t t e m p t t o  is  do s o  will  language p r o f i c i e n c y  from  clarity.  Conceptual concerns  1.3.2  '•  i  I s o l a t i o n of a psycholinguistic factor  of  s o c i o l i n g u i s t i c concerns When o u t l i n i n g for  the  rationale  second language l e a r n i n g ,  for  his  "new"  theoretical  Cummins (1979) n o t e d t h a t ,  framework in  several  papers the  marked  difference  between  42  the  outcomes  of  immersion  programs a n d " s u b m e r s i o n ' programs f o r t h e m i n o r i t y 1  usually  been  attributed  to  socio-cultural  f a c t o r s such as socioeconomic s t a t u s for  the  teacher the  school  program,  expectations,  poor  children,  academic little  specifically  "the  choice  contrast  framework  etc. Unlike achievement  prestige  earlier of  l i n g u i s t i c explanatory  of  linguistic language  linguistically In  relative  attitudinal  of  LI  many  and L 2 ,  minority  explain language  been a t t r i b u t e d t o Bowen g o e s s o f a r  are unimportant  instruction  support  attempts t o  factors.  factors  of  and  ( S E S ) , community  importance has g e n e r a l l y  as t o argue t h a t  c h i l d has  1  in  and t h a t  our schools  irrelevant"...  to this  which  position,  assigns  a  I  shall  central  propose a  role  to  the  theoretical  interaction  between s o c i o - c u l t u r a l , l i n g u i s t i c a n d s c h o o l p r o g r a m in  explaining  bilingual  the  children,  academic  and c o g n i t i v e  Cummins h a s b e e n t a k e n t o t a s k Commins & M i r a m o m t e s ,  1984)  factors  development  of  ( p p . 222-223)  I n s p i t e o f h i s avowed i n t e n t t o i n c o r p o r a t e  MacNab,  is  by s e v e r a l  sociological factors, authors  (Canale,  1984;  1989; E d e l s k y e t a l . , 1983; Genesee, 1984;  1979; M a r t i n - J o n e s  & Romaine,  1986; T r o i k e ,  f o r g i v i n g primacy i n h i s t h e o r e t i c a l  1984; Wald,  constructs to the role  The term "submersion" i s used t o i n d i c a t e a language immersion program i n which t h e f i r s t language o f t h e s t u d e n t s i s n e i t h e r used n o r promoted i n t h e c l a s s r o o m , a s i t u a t i o n which i s thought t o l e a d t o n e g a t i v e l i n g u i s t i c and c o g n i t i v e e f f e c t s . 1  43  of a putative is  linguistic  2  s u c c i n c t l y put  factor.  forward  The p e r s p e c t i v e o f  by G e n e s e e  (1984,  p.21)  these  who  authors  protests:  Cummins s t r e s s e s t h a t t h e t y p e o f  language p r o f i c i e n c y t h a t  associated  language  grounded  with  and  could  interaction".  only  develop  However,  relationship achievement,  school-related  between these  in  and l i n g u i s t i c d i m e n s i o n s o f  outcomes,  factor it  will  a  is  "socially  matrix  if  proficiency  and  human of  the  academic ignored.  s t r e s s i s p l a c e d on  cognitive  l a n g u a g e p r o f i c i e n c y a s an  important  i n a c c o u n t i n g f o r d i s p a r a t e academic lead to  of  discussions  s o c i a l foundations are v i r t u a l l y  Genesee g o e s on t o p o i n t o u t t h a t  explanatory  within  subsequent  language  use,  is  treatments  of  t h e p r o b l e m . What d i s t u r b s t h e s e a u t h o r s a b o u t t h e a s s u m p t i o n o f  an  intervening  linguistic  support  such  MacNab, is  for  1979),  thereby  Romaine,  variable  concept  and s e c o n d ,  invoked  in  the  (Diaz,  is the  a later  p.  31)  and l i n g u i s t i c  first, data  direction  1985;  stage of the d i s c u s s i o n .  of  a view  which  is  the  lack  of  et  adequate  al.,  that  Martin-Jones  w i t h i n more  M a r t i n - J o n e s and Romaine  "most c l e a r l y  1983;  causal chain  1979;  be d e a l t  s e e s u c h an a s s u m p t i o n a s c o n s t i t u t i n g  making,"  a  (Edelsky  MacNab,  1986) , b o t h i s s u e s w h i c h w i l l  at  the  a  cognitive  achievement  "a d e f i c i t  depth (1986,  theory  44  in  e x p r e s s e d i n Cummins'  The a d j e c t i v e " p u t a t i v e " i s u s e d h e r e t o i n d i c a t e t h a t , i n t h e m i n d s o f many r e s e a r c h e r s , e s p e c i a l l y t h o s e i n t e r e s t e d in s o c i o l o g i c a l e x p l a n a t i o n s of the f a c t s , t h a t l i n g u i s t i c l i n k has not been p r o v e n . 2  &  threshold hypothesis."  Commentary The b a s i c c h a r g e made h e r e o f t h e of in  sociological variables particular,  justified. level  of  in  the  The h e u r i s t i c  nor i s  i n Cummins' t h e o r e t i c a l Threshold  bilingualism  includes,  and  Cummins  ' c h i l d process'  educational  determinants  and a p p e a r s t o  such v a r i a b l e s 241-244) effort  has  been  of  to  dimensions,  in  isolate  the  show the  variables  cognitive  used are  such e f f o r t s  design  are  of  their  biased against  ill-fated  in  the  later.  45  which  to  the  of  of  (p.  winnow  out  (1979,  pp.  just  those  the so  two as  to  bilingualism,  variables dependent  second language views  s o c i a l and  considerable  between  experiments  relevant  "psycho-  especially  c a r e has been t a k e n t o  I  discussed  be  achievement"  h a v e shown,  degree  respect  the  A s MacNab  correlations  variable,  With  similar  not  to  of  as  purposely to  researchers,  s u b j e c t s on o t h e r  factors.  ability,  students'  148-162)  some  them  t h a t mediate  bilingual  positive  independent  c a r e f u l matching of sociological  by  neither  characterizes  sociological chaff.  made  seem  and  any measure o f s o c i o l o g i c a l  be a t t e m p t i n g q u i t e  from the  constructs,  does  ability,  include,  and R e y n o l d s (1991, p p .  purporting  tests  cognitive  (1984a)  educational  127) ,  Hypothesis  power  d e s c r i b e s o n l y two c o v a r y i n g d i m e n s i o n s ,  intended to  interference.  i g n o r i n g o f any e x p l a n a t o r y  these  by  including variable,  ensure t h a t learners.  the That  authors w i l l  be  What Cummins appears t o be s e e k i n g i s t h e i s o l a t i o n o f a " b r a i n processing"  variable  perhaps t o f i n d there that,  from  cither m e d i a t i n g  variables,  an e f f o r t  "What i s g o i n g on in  an answer t o t h e q u e s t i o n :  as a r e s u l t o f what i s going on out h e r e ? " I t w i l l be argued though  a valid  and l a u d a b l e  quest,  h i s approach  to  the  problem i s l a c k i n g t h e r e s o l v i n g power t o s e t t l e such a q u e s t i o n .  D e f i n i t i o n of constructs  (1) C o g n i t i v e  Critiques  issues  of Cummins' approach  to  cognition  Cummins has been f a u l t e d by s e v e r a l mindedness w i t h r e s p e c t  authors on a l a c k o f c l e a r -  t o what might b e s t  be termed  i s s u e s . " Edelsky e t a l . (1983, p. 7) complain t h a t ,  "cognitive  " i n h i s claims  f o r evidence o f c o g n i t i v e advantage o r d i s a d v a n t a g e , " he makes use of  t e s t s which " f a i l  claim  t o assess,  t o i l l u m i n a t e the c o g n i t i v e processes  focusing  as they  do on answers  rather  they than  p r o c e s s e s , " adding  Almost none [of the t e s t s ] i n v e s t i g a t e s c o g n i t i v e from  a broad  functioning  t h e o r e t i c a l framework o f c o g n i t i o n .  Instead,  i n v e s t i g a t i o n s o f s t a t i c s u r f a c e performances which a r e h i g h l y susceptible  to  investigations  variations of  such  hypothesis generation,  in  context  cognitive  substitute  processes  as  a b s t r a c t i n g from and r e - c o d i n g 46  for  memory, input,  6tl*C •  • • •  There are t h e r e f o r e good reasons t o suspect t h e data o f f e r e d i n support of these  MacNab  (1979) a l s o  measured  as  skills."  He  different  hypotheses.  showed  indicators  concern  of  determined  that  instruments  were  the  over  what  dependent  i n the being  post  used,  exactly  variable, P e a l and  ones  was  being  "cognitive  Lambert  which  era,  included  a  g r e a t e r degree of c o g n i t i v e f l e x i b i l i t y measurements, and concluded that  "the  measures  can  t h i n k i n g measures and (where t h e problem verbal"  While  probably  two  be  categorized into  k i n d s of convergent  divergent  thinking  measures  i s t o f i n d the r i g h t answer) - v e r b a l and non-  (p. 237).  agreeing  i n general with  the  spirit  of  the  critique  of  Edelsky e t a l . , Martin-Jones and Romaine (1986) f o c u s p r i m a r i l y on the t i g h t l y drawn r e l a t i o n s h i p which Cummins' t h e o r i e s between language that  and c o g n i t i v e f u n c t i o n i n g , c i t i n g h i s statement  " ' s e m i l i n g u a l i s m ' "cannot 3  concept  at  presuppose  all'  but  be used as a s t r i c t l y  relates  specifically  to  linguistic cognitive  development" (p. 28). They comment:  Cummins  appears  to  be  equating  semantic  development  with  I t s h o u l d be noted t h a t the term " s e m i l i n g u a l i s m " has been w i d e l y c r i t i c i z e d (see, f o r example, Martin-Jones and Romaine, 1986) and i s now outdated. I t has been r e p l a c e d by t h e l e s s c o n c e p t u a l l y burdened term " s u b t r a c t i v e b i l i n g u a l i s m " p r o f f e r e d by Lambert. 3  47  cognitive between  development language  straightforward  i n these  and thought  definitions. processes  is  as he s u g g e s t s . C o g n i t i v e  the unequivocal p a c e - s e t t e r s  The r e l a t i o n s h i p by  no means  categories  f o r the a c q u i s i t i o n of  as  are not  linguistic  c a t e g o r i e s hoped f o r by some r e s e a r c h e r s who h a v e done work on language  Canale  acquisition,  (1984)  concurs  noting  demands w i t h o t h e r  demands  T o do s o may c o n t r i b u t e  general of  made  Spanish  a  such (p.  parameters  task:  as  mislabelling  (1989)  "linguistic  deficit"  of  with  to  and even  ( e . g . i n t h e form and  "cognitive  37)  proficiency  Miramontes  given  cognitive  c o n c l u s i o n s about t h e language p r o f i c i e n c y  labels  such  by a  cognitive p r o f i c i e n c y of i n d i v i d u a l s  deficit."  students  was d i s c o v e r e d  which  of students'  in  was c r i t i c a l  abilities  Cummins' B I C S / C A L P d i c h o t o m y . that  29)  one must n o t c o n f u s e l i n g u i s t i c  incorrect  Just  (p.  the  limited study  E n g l i s h and  b y Commins a n d  of the constraining  by t h e o r e t i c a l  I n an e t h n o g r a p h i c  of  the  constructs such as study,  they  found  teachers  had  underestimated  abilities  [the  students']  linguistic  and academic  i n b o t h E n g l i s h and S p a n i s h b a s e d o n t h e i r c l a s s r o o m  performance.  Seemingly,  teachers mistake  48  a lack  of  vocabulary  and a  lack  thinking  of  verbal  abilities....  demonstrated evaluation] show  clarity  these in  evidence  this of  for  Although skills  essential  situations competency"  in  thinking  element  which  (p.  of  of  the  467).  students  at  complex  contexts,  The  levels  have  analysis,  and  they  when t h e y pp.  that  of  did were  465-466)  according to these  authors,  characterized  displayed  worries  not  activities,  (ibid.,  relevance  students  underlying  may  [synthesis,  What was l a c k i n g i n t h e s c h o o l c o n t e x t , "the  absence of  c l a s s r o o m ' s normal  observed over a v a r i e t y  was  the  Canale  their and  the  greatest  Commins  Miramomtes a r e e c h o e d by Wald  (1984) who,  L a b o v and S h u y , t a l k s  falseness of a s s o c i a t i n g nonstandard,  often  stigmatized,  their  speakers"  of  "the  forms o f  (p.  i n e x p l a i n i n g t h e work  and  language w i t h c o g n i t i v e d e f i c i e n c i e s  MacNab (1979, p .  Cummins  (1978)  that  232)  "takes  children  who  i s s u e with the p r o p o s i t i o n are  exposed  to  a  by t h e e x p e r i e n c e , " a c o n c e r n s h a r e d by D i a z  designed to  test  to  the  this  Threshold Hypothesis.  premise,  Diaz  possible to  a t t r i b u t e the  differences  i n socioeconomic v a r i a b l e s ,  effects  (1985), In  found t h a t ,  not  experiment only  observed c o g n i t i v e d i f f e r e n c e s  of b i l i n g u a l i s m are probably r e l a t e d  to the  "the  initial  r e q u i r e d t o u n d e r s t a n d and p r o d u c e a s e c o n d l a n g u a g e r a t h e r  49  harmed  a n d one w h i c h an  but a l s o t h a t  of  bilingual  e d u c a t i o n b u t who do n o t a c h i e v e b a l a n c e may be c o g n i t i v e l y  directly  in  57).  Finally,  relates  of  was  to  it  group  positive efforts than  to  increasingly MacNab,  on  higher the  explanation  of  levels  other the  of  hand,  data  second languages f a s t e r  other  subject.  however,  who  relationship ability," that  it  argued  would  of  "degree  more  brighter  and t h a t ,  investigated  between  a  of  1387).  children  learn  respect,  the  from t h e l e a r n i n g o f  the study the  (p.  parsimonious  in this  i s no d i f f e r e n t  The r e s u l t s  also  proficiency"  that  be t h a t  and b e t t e r  l e a r n i n g o f a second language any  bilingual  conducted  causal  by  direction  bilingualism"  and  Diaz,  of  the  "cognitive  lend support t o the premise of the Threshold Hypothesis  i s level  o f b i l i n g u a l i s m which d r i v e s  cognitive  variance,  and n o t t h e r e v e r s e .  Commentary It  seems c l e a r  burning  question:  however, a  that  deal  addressed  above  cognition, cognitive  on  it  in  of a l l these  How d o e s Cummins d e f i n e  issues  the question  Nevertheless,  concepts,  the heart  i s very d i f f i c u l t  great  authors  at  light  and t h e  to  as posed of  in  the  interest  seems o n l y f a i r  of  this  comprehensive  conceptualization  of this  Cummins' conceptualization  the papers  levelled  reviewed.  him by t h e  t o examine Cummins* own s t a t e m e n t s  on  and  through  well-focused construct.  cognition 50  author  at  has not  of  important  of  he  i n the topic  matters to t r y to synthesize, a  w h i l e he has w r i t t e n  question,  any o f  the critiques  l i e s one  c o g n i t i o n ? The answer,  t o p i n down, s i n c e , related  concerns  extrapolation picture  of  of his  On e x a m i n a t i o n dealing  of  with the  several  of  elaboration  i d e a s on t h e  nature  information  on  of  Cummins' p a p e r s , of  the  Threshold Hypothesis  language p r o f i c i e n c y ,  cognition  fell  into  assiduously  all  questions  for  many y e a r s .  independent,  they  synthesis of  the  of  the  will  that  it  three  answers t o What d e v e l o p s ? , How does i t measured?,  particularly  and  his  was n o t e d t h a t  the  general  function?,  psychologists  underlying  be d e a l t  concepts w i l l  categories,  and How c a n i t  These t h r e e c a t e g o r i e s  initially  those  be  have  pursued  being  somewhat  with separately, be p r e s e n t e d a t  and the  a  end  section.  What d e v e l o p s ? (i) It  Cognition is  itself  evident  proficiency (Cummins,  from  into  his  BICS  1984b,  p.  d i s s e c t i o n of and  "surface"  and  of  language  "deeper"  levels  the  language p r o c e s s e s necessary t o  the  proficient  use of  language  hierarchical  the  "deeper"  levels  being  nature,  that  components  Cummins c o n c e i v e s o f  in  138),  CALP,  the  with  c o g n i t i v e l y demanding t h a n t h e is  less  cognitively  cognitively  demanding  evident  by  his  parallel  to the  "surface" levels  demanding than  than  functional  juxtaposition  of  (e.g.  grammar,  various  It  cognitive  language p r o c e s s e s , t h a t t h e s e  are  as  more  pronunciation  which  meaning).  various  is  is  less  equally  processes  in  conceived of  as  i  separate similarly with  from  but  interactive  hierarchical  increasing  with  in nature,  abstraction  (e.g. 51  language  processes,  increasing in cognitive comprehension  is  seen  and  are  demands as  less  cognitively  demanding t h a n a n a l y s i s , w h i c h i s  evaluation). Cummins  These c o n c l u s i o n s a r e r a t i f i e d by s t a t e m e n t s  when  discussing  Threshold Hypothesis  Thus, a  the  nature  (Cummins,  expressive  low  level  skills,  but  must  processes -  -  be  the  translated  competence"  i n the  as  in  a language,  capable  of  s u c c e e d i n g on t e s t s  is  keeping with these notions of  of  cognitive to  abilities  listening  thresholds  (p.  content  formal  "surface"  deeper  levels  becomes  operational  L2  competence  of  "cognitive  which  require p.  that  the  speaker  "complex  231).  separateness yet  related  to  "basic cognitive  is  cognitive  relatedness  p r o c e s s e s and l a n g u a g e p r o c e s s e s , Cummins h a s  distinguish  and  231)  no g u a r a n t e e  the  comprehension  curriculum  (ibid.,  In  pains  only  more a b s t r a c t  language,  be c a r r i e d o u t "  l o w e r t h r e s h o l d may i n v o l v e  children's  Fluency  operations to  the  the  into  then,  the  made by in  of  s y m b o l i c and r e q u i r e s  thought  of  than  1979):  i n the e a r l y grades the  relatively  more  l e s s demanding  abilities"  language s k i l l s and academic  from  taken  cognitive  achievement:  The f a c t  that,  minority  l a n g u a g e c h i l d r e n may be more d e p e n d e n t on t h e s c h o o l  to provide the skills  i n comparison t o m i d d l e - c l a s s c h i l d r e n ,  prerequisites  does not  imply  that  for these  52  the  a c q u i s i t i o n of  children's basic  low SES  literacy cognitive  abilities the  l i n g u i s t i c system of t h e i r  (ibid.,  It  is  a r e i n any s e n s e d e f i c i e n t n o r t h a t t h e i r  p.  cognitive  though,  t h a t he d o e s p e r c e i v e o f  and  in  b i l i n g u a l i s m , as capable o f h a v i n g a profound e f f e c t  on  and a c a d e m i c a b i l i t i e s  in  fails  overcome d i f f i c u l t i e s  to  bilingual  over the  However,  the  research  experiences  evidence might  functioning, language.  at  child's  learning  least  Continued  in  term:  i n so f a r  where  the  c o p i n g w i t h two  negative  his  likely  on  his  functioning  with  child  languages  bilingual  effect  as t h i s  difficulties  time are  long  language,  situations  suggests that  have] a  prolonged period of  will  i s n e c e s s a r i l y inadequate,  240)  notable,  particular,  LI  command o f  language  t o mean t h a t a  learning cognitive involves over  a  bilingual  i n t e r a c t i o n w i t h an i n c r e a s i n g l y s y m b o l i c e n v i r o n m e n t  not  optimally  progress.  (Cummins,  The  ambivalence of  on  cognition  promote 1976,  p.  his  cognitive  be  academic  23)  Cummins' p o s i t i o n on t h e  will  and  returned  to  citation  and  at  influence of  a  later  language  stage  in  the  stated  in  the  discussion.  Implicit  in  the  last  Threshold Hypothesis i s the be  accelerated  or  notion that  retarded  by  53  explicitly  c o g n i t i v e development  experience  including  can  language  experience. variable"  By d e s c r i b i n g l e v e l  in accounting for  of  c o g n i t i v e growth,  d e p e n d e n t on "more f u n d a m e n t a l cognitive 1976,  (e.g.  p.  23) ,  importance factors. of  language  learning  language  Although i t  the  social,  Cummins a p p e a r s  of  b i l i n g u a l i s m as an  factors  attitudinal,  be in  the  of  his  giving  l a n g u a g e on c o g n i t i v e g r o w t h ,  to  to  and  (Cummins,  diminish  of  the  sociocultural  is; a f i t t i n g  primacy  the  refutation  influence  be  The r o u g h s k e t c h o f Cummins' v i e w o f c o g n i t i o n w h i c h i s e m e r g i n g  to  as w i l l  be s e e n l a t e r  impression too turns i n the  out  of  to  contentious  this  factors"  face  itself  educational  attempting  w o u l d seem t h a t t h i s  criticisms  one w h i c h i s  aptitude)  to  "intervening  discussion.  •i  i this  point  their  is  that  of  an  isolated  own c o h e s i v e i n t e g r i t y  ("basic  c o r e which has e x t e n s i o n s i n t o language from  (cognitive  some  of  developed  in  reciprocal  effect  of  cognition  the  of  abilities  cognitive  s p e c i f i c areas of  competence i n a l a n g u a g e ) . above  these  statements  specific  on c o r e o r  as  core  separate  that  areas  "basic"  yet  the  of  the  citation  language social, equated (Cummins,  above  learning  aptitude)  attitudinal, with 1979,  (Cummins,  and  individual p.  243)  1976,  factors"  educational difference  factors.  knowledge  such as  would a l s o  cognitive  it  examine j u s t what Cummins p e r c e i v e s c o g n i t i o n t o In  but  It  abilities.  p. are  is  appear  exert  a  notion  interesting  to  be s e p a r a t e  from.  "cognitive  (e.g.  and or  These c h i l d i n p u t 54  can  clearly  factors  a  abilities  Given t h i s  23),  factors,  have  abilities"),  knowledge  integrated,  which  separate appear "child  from to  be  input"  f a c t o r s are  seen  as h a v i n g " m o t i v a t i o n a l both with (p.  linguistic  243)  in  children  a s p e c t s [which] a r e a l s o l i k e l y  input  determining  learning  a  variables  the  cognitive  second language.  outcomes, t h e r e  are p a r t i c u l a r internal, interact  the  with  factors,  these  which  are  considered  separate  influence  In  replying  social  their  of  variables  most  include  from  cognition.  attitudes  incorporated into  to  as  sociopolitical  it  of  is  it  not  a l s o of  consider  interaction  treatment" (1979)  (Cummins, 1984c,  himself  notes,  p.  72).  "[t]he  in  55  environment  short,  with  and  are  another.  emphasis on Cummins  the  causal  however,  obvious relevance  The p r o b l e m i s t h a t , 'threshold'  was  an u n r e a s o n a b l e  question;  c o g n i t i v e and l i n g u i s t i c f a c t o r s a r e  as  appear,  success,  "In in  such  would  little  school  to  that  above,  i n one way o r  i s not the case:  as  cognitive  aspects  our  he p l a c e d t o o  as i n t e r v e n i n g v a r i a b l e s  with  are  which  i s noteworthy  not  in  that  and  manner  statement  and w i t h i n ,  factors  learner  a  Attitudes,  determinants  that  environment  such  the  our t h i n k i n g  criticisms that  the  the  in  expressed  then,  of  o f academic and  identified  in  outcomes  i n f l u e n c e s ; ones  attitudinal  which,  interact  Treatments"  evident,  However,  closely  learning  the  variables  of  types  growth.  adamantly contends t h a t t h i s primacy  two  from both w i t h o u t  since  inevitably  are  considered to  towards  position,  is  o n e s stemming f r o m  are  motivation  have  It  cognitive  i n the determination  internal  or retard  former,  and  t o t h e c h i l d o r , more g e n e r a l l y ,  and e x t e r n a l  accelerate  and E d u c a t i o n a l  academic  according to t h i s perspective,  to  to  educational a s Cummins  'developmental  I  interdependence*  hypotheses  attempt  to  integrate  suggests that  l i n g u i s t i c f a c t o r s a r e important  understanding  the  with his extent  educational  linguistic  critics detail  One  dynamics o f  are  bilingual  environment"  factors  questioning,  are  (p.  236).  important  [italics child's  which  added]  is  in  interaction  J u s t why a n d t o  what  p r e c i s e l y what  an i s s u e w h i c h w i l l i  be t a k e n  these  up i n  more  below.  problem  that  raises  its  Cummins  considers  Although  on many o c c a s i o n s  concepts,  often,  he a p p e a r s t o example,  in  cognition  lump t h e  the  relatedness. concepts,  here  and  academic  his  writings  in  very  two t o g e t h e r  it  is  that  he  the  as c l o s e l y t i e d  s l a s h appears to  academic achievement  for  to  be.  the  two  construct  concepts. For  cognitive/academic indicate  inter-  t h e b o u n d a r i e s between t h e  interesting  an h y p o t h e s i s aimed a t  related  BICS/CALP dichotomy,  where  is  how  separates  the  the  of  achievement  naming o f  Given t h i s b l u r r i n g of  then,  Hypothesis,  head  as i n h i s e l a b o r a t i o n o f  language p r o f i c i e n c y ,  in  the  data  to  note  that  the  Threshold  explaining differential  second language  two  learners,  results  proposes a  r e l a t i o n s h i p between l e v e l o f b i l i n g u a l i s m and c o g n i t i v e  abilities,  and  reasonable  bilingualism  not  interpretation effects  of  of t h i s  and  But  the  achievement.  i s would be t h a t i t  cognition that  environment.  academic  on l a n g u a g e a b i l i t y  :  arrow  o s t e n s i b l y go i n two d i r e c t i o n s : e i t h e r effect  i s t h r o u g h the  language i n t e r a c t s  directional  A  with the  of  the  educational  effect  c o g n i t i o n has a  a s was s u g g e s t e d by MacNab  56  mediating  could  mediating (1979),  or  language  ability  Whatever  the  alters  cognitive  c a s e may b e ,  it  is  very  r e g a r d t h e two a s i n t e r d e p e n d e n t . to  apparent  or  (ii)  be e x a m i n e d  perhaps  that  both.  Cummins d o e s  To what d e g r e e he p e r c e i v e s  be s o , a n d i n w h i c h d i r e c t i o n he p e r c e i v e s t h e  point w i l l  In  processes,  them  c a u s a l arrow  to  below.  L a n g u a g e a s a n i n f l u e n c e on c o g n i t i o n  the  paper  theoretical 1976),  in  which  scaffolding  for  discusses the  Vygotsky.  of  While  development language,  of  language  the  l o g i c a l thought "the  i s dependent on t h e  totality  integrated  of  is  holds not  an  with l i n g u i s t i c  only  experience"  Threshold Hypothesis,  even  Piagetian  though  experience... a limited derives their  in  (p.  action  experiments  can  Piaget  and  that  the of  development  of  of  28).  It  is  speech, is  and,  immediately  according to  of  view  accommodate  view  of  "Genevan p s y c h o l o g i s t s "  it.  due t o t h e  fact  not  language,  "language"  He  usually refers  to  57  the  the  argues  "linguistic  that operational in  for  Cummins,  a c c e l e r a t i n g c o g n i t i v e growth  34)  but  closely  no d i f f i c u l t i e s  point  i s capable of  extent" from  the  the  the  independent  personality  (p.  of  of  the  (Cummins,  considers  that  individual's  concepts  that,  those  internalization  latter perspective offers  the  Hypothesis  essentially  evident t h a t the the  detail  c o n t r a s t i n g p o s i t i o n s on  position  operations  V y g o t s k y ' s view  greatest  and t h o u g h t ,  Piagetian  cognitive  in  Threshold  Cummins o u t l i n e s t h e two m a j o r  inter-relationship  that  he  only  thinking  context  " s p e c i f i c short-term  to  of  training  procedures"  (p.  34),  social situations.  not t o  language as i t  i s normally  He s e e s t h e emphasis p l a c e d by t h e s e  on t h e g e n e r a t i o n o f  feedback d e r i v e d from the  on  for  the  environment  the  promotion  of  employed  in  researchers  c h i l d ' s own a c t i o n s  operational  growth  as  h o l d i n g t h e key t o t h e e f f e c t i v e n e s s o f b i l i n g u a l i s m i n  channelling  c o g n i t i v e development.  constitutes  a s p e c i a l case of action. the  Bilingual training,  a c t i o n on t h e  Cummins c o n t e n d s t h a t ,  bilingual  i n h i s view,  environment,  during the  and even o f  language  language t r a i n i n g  is  constantly  generating d a t a , t h r o u g h h i s s p e e c h a c t i o n s on t h e  environment,  which p r o v i d e a q u a l i t a t i v e l y  different  f e e d b a c k f r o m t h a t p r o v i d e d by a u n i l i n g u a l ' s s p e e c h It  i s the  can  period,  feedback  from t h e s e b i l i n g u a l  (according to  the  objectification  c o g n i t i v e growth,  (p.  35)  form  activity.  speech a c t i o n s  hypothesis)  of  which  accelerate  I  i  This  position,  Piaget's  ...  operational  of  intelligence  of  intelligence, and  attention  believes,  statement  of  sound  he  evolution, itself"  to  o b j e c t s . . . a n d to the The i m p o r t a n c e  "in  incompatible  with  ' l a n g u a g e d o e s n o t seem t o be t h e  motor  but r a t h e r (p.  35).  thereby the  no  i n the  service  A s an i n s t r u m e n t  i n the  service  lead to a faster  directing  essential  way  an i n s t r u m e n t  b i l i n g u a l i s m "might  meaning, both  that  is  or  the  separation  bilingual  conceptual  accorded to the  directing  58  of  the  child's  attributes  c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s o f h i s two l a n g u a g e s " child's  of  (p.  of 32).  attention  is  of  interest  detail  in  a  as  it  later  is  a point  chapter.  which w i l l  For  the  be t a k e n  moment,  wonder why t h i s d i r e c t i n g o f a t t e n t i o n  it  is  up  in  great  sufficient  to  t o c o n c e p t u a l and l i n g u i s t i c  i  c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s o f t h e two l a n g u a g e s would n o t be e q u a l l y  effective  in  promoting  intellectual  growth  at  all  levels  of  bilingual  to  to  reconcile  training.  Commentary Although  Cummins  Piaget's  position  has  gone  on  to  great  cognitive  pains  development  try with  arguments a r e not t h o r o u g h l y c o n v i n c i n g . F i r s t of  Piaget's  statement  (cognition) It  is  above  would  seem t o  o p e r a t e s on l a n g u a g e r a t h e r  clear  be  than the  f r o m Cummins' comments, h o w e v e r ,  agree w i t h the  first  part of the  of  statement,  his all,  that  own, the  spirit  intelligence  o t h e r way a r o u n d .  that,  t h o u g h h e may  he b e l i e v e s t h e r e  r e c i p r o c i t y o f a c t i o n from language o n t o c o g n i t i o n w h i c h i s enough t o far  cry  cause c o g n i t i v e r e t a r d a t i o n from  the  Genevan  or  acceleration.  psychologists •  position  (Cummins,  1976,  p.  32) ,  to  the  test  situation.  a  strong  that  is  it  a is  extent"  '  even  p o s s i b i l i t y t h a t the d e f i n i t i o n  is  This  "capable of a c c e l e r a t i n g c o g n i t i v e growth only to a l i m i t e d i  his  taking  of  Secondly,  into  consideration  language employed i s if  a bilingual's  the  particular  speech a c t i o n s  a r e g e n e r a t i n g data o r feedback which b r i n g about c o g n i t i v e change, this  would appear  all,  i s the  Furthermore,  to  constitute  instrument  a motoric  action:  a motor,  t h a t g e n e r a t e s t h e power t o e f f e c t  any a c t i o n w h i c h d o e s e f f e c t 59  change, whether  after  change. directly  or  indirectly,  Thirdly, theory  must  in spite  of  of  cognitive  classified  the  fact  as  causal  to  some  over  the  other,  Cummins d o e s  f r o m V y g o t s k y ' s p o s i t i o n on t h e  l a n g u a g e and t h o u g h t ,  In  of  and e v e n c i t e s V y g o t s k y ' s  of  development  (either positively  intellectual emotional  if  one  fundamental  development but  development (ibid.,  p.  considers  social,  it  all  in  the  affect  or negatively)  also "character  reflect  the  the  it  is  child's  s i n c e not  only  development  direct  and  influence  of  34)  the  importance  attitudinal  Cummins c o n s i d e r s t o bilingualism,  tool  c o g n i t i v e development,  inconceivable that b i l i n g u a l i s m should not  Now,  arguments  cognition:  terms o f V y g o t s k y ' s t h e o r y  speech",  not  relationship  on t h e p o s s i b i l i t y o f b i l i n g u a l i s m a c t i n g a s a p o w e r f u l development  degree.  t h a t he d o e s n o t o p e n l y e s p o u s e one  development  disassociate himself between  be  [and]  of  speech  to  the  educational" variables  be c a u s a l i n r e a c h i n g t h e  lower  "more which  threshold  becomes a p p a r e n t t h a t t h e r e i s n o t h i n g t h a t i s  i n f l u e n c e d by language  of not  i n h i s mind.  i What emerges on a n a l y s i s o f (Cummins' s t a t e m e n t s between language  language to  be  and t h o u g h t of  the  (or  utmost  cognition)  is  importance  in  on t h e  relationship  that  he c o n s i d e r s  determining  both  c o g n i t i v e and a c a d e m i c o u t c o m e s . Thus t h e c r i t i c s who c l a i m t h a t  he  p l a c e s t o o much emphasis on l a n g u a g e i n e x p l a i n i n g a c a d e m i c s u c c e s s 60  1  a p p e a r t o be on s o l i d g r o u n d . H o w e v e r , indeed a l l - p e r v a s i v e from  any  of  the  as  have  significant  say  a  that  it  is  defined  is  causal  variables  and m e a s u r e d .  effect  Cummins  Hence  on what s t u d e n t s  correct  in  his  it  will  learn.  approach;  to  it  question the  usefulness of  attempting to  variable  g i v e n the omnipresence of  even  question  to  discerned  at  whether  this  developed further  level  This  later  How does c o g n i t i o n  function?  In  manner  elucidating  altered  the  by l a n g u a g e ,  experience,  potential  for  course,  information.  additional  information  explanation  elaboration described tasks  by  varies  of  that the  which  cognitive  it  processing  would load  Cummins i n t e n d e d  postulating according  to  a  be  linguistic  be  and  accurately  which w i l l  functioning  of  language  that  degree  the  is  appear  be  the  of  feedback  is,  it  is  That t h i s  as  is  the  to  indeed  being in  the  has  s u p p o r t e d by h i s  of  the the  brain  difficulty  be  which has  that  proficiency  positions  61  Data or  that  can  especially in  (feedback)  c o g n i t i v e growth.  Hence,  nature  moment,  i n q u i r y might  a point  accommodate w h i c h a c c e l e r a t e s c o g n i t i v e g r o w t h . the  to  discussion.  as g e n e r a t i n g d a t a  accelerating  not  problem  For the  can  Cummins d e s c r i b e s l a n g u a g e ,  bilingual  of  in  the  isolate  processes  investigation,  i n the  is  language i n t h e environment,  cognitive of  cognitive undoubtedly  but  t o s a y t h a t a more p r o d u c t i v e avenue o f  is  isolated  affecting  a p p e a r s t o be f a r more complex t h a n was s u s p e c t e d . suffice  language  i n s o c i e t y a n d c a n n o t be e f f e c t i v e l y  so-called  growth  as noted above,  later best  language  features  of  a  language  task  o n two i n t e r s e c t i n g  continua:  context-embeddedness o f t h e language, of  one s p e c i f y i n g t h e  and t h e other  t h e c o g n i t i v e demands p l a c e d o n t h e b r a i n  138;  the intensity  (Cummins,  1984a, p .  Cummins, 1984b, p . 1 2 ) . T h e c o n c e p t u a l b a s i s f o r t h e v e r t i c a l  continuum  specifying cognitive  demands h a s e v i d e n t l y  been  taken  f r o m i n f o r m a t i o n p r o c e s s i n g t h e o r y w h i c h d e l i n e a t e s two b a s i c t y p e s of  information  processes  processing,  have  been  completed very while  therefore  do r e q u i r e  McLaughlin, information  by r e p e t i t i o n  without  more  on t h i s  than  interference.  and r e q u i r e  Rossman,  of  a  Automatic  task  and a r e  t h e n e c e s s i t y o f a high degree of  focused attention.  perform  capacity-limited  and c o n t r o l l e d .  processes a r e n o t learned responses and  controlled  to  simultaneously  learned  q u i c k l y without  attention,  difficult  automatic  topic).  c o g n i t i v e demands o f a t a s k  one  controlled  The l a t t e r  more t i m e  and Macleod  Because o f t h i s ,  (1983)  A critical  factor  for  is  process  are also  for their  it  tightly  a c t i v a t i o n (see more  detailed  i n determining the  i s t h e degree o f a t t e n t i o n  r e q u i r e d . As  McLaughlin and h i s group p u t i t :  [T]he the  predetermination  amount  bits  of  of cognitive  information.  information  of relations  rather  effort  required  By d e a l i n g than  between e l e m e n t s r e d u c e s  isolated  t o handle  with bits,  related more  isolated units  of  efficient  p r o c e s s i n g becomes p o s s i b l e . In  recent  practice,  y e a r s r e s e a r c h e r s have i n v e s t i g a t e d t h e e f f e c t s o f rehearsal,  and 62  familiarity  on  information  processing.  A particularly  the degree of a t t e n t i o n  important  variable  appears to  i n v o l v e d . The more a t t e n t i o n  t h e more r e s o u r c e s a r e consumed and t h e s l o w e r t h e Greater p r a c t i c e , allows much  information  cost  in  practice, p.  In  his  r e h e a r s a l or f a m i l i a r i t y to  be  h a n d l e d more  attentional  monitoring  rehearsal, or familiarity  required,  processing.  with the  routinely  as  when  be  material  without  there  is  with the m a t e r i a l ,  as  less  (ibid.,  138)  conceptualization  proficiency, information  Cummins  of  this  (1984b)  processing  vertical has  continuum of  manifestly  language  borrowed  from  theory: i  The  vertical  continuum  to  address  the of  the  or  degree  of  active  cognitive  involvement  in  the  task  activity.  C o g n i t i v e i n v o l v e m e n t c a n be c o n c e p t u a l i z e d i n  of  amount  the  order to the  vertical  or  information  in  close  continuum  interesting  to  note  ...  consist  of  must by  Thus,  the  be  and  individual  in  the upper p a r t s  of  communicative  for  at  require  appropriate  this  !  thus  63  point  tasks  little  performance,  that  terms  processed  l i n g u i s t i c t o o l s h a v e become  (mastered)  involvement  that  succession  activity  i n which the  automatized cognitive  of  c a r r y out the  activities  is  intended  developmental a s p e c t s o f communicative p r o f i c i e n c y i n terms  simultaneously  It  is  (p.  and  largely active 13)  " c o g n i t i v e demands"  have e s s e n t i a l l y been equated t o concepts  explain  language  tasks)  learner,  it  this,  learning is  quite  requires  to  practised.  more  As  attentional  resources  task  monitoring  accomplished  more  are  a  task  if  is  monitoring  task  at  with  practice,  becomes  more  familiar,  necessary, and  for  hence  the  language  task  cognitively points  demanding  out,  speakers  whether  tasks.  position  of  "skills a  demanding f o r  language  He b e l i e v e s , however, intrinsic  4  on  characteristics  and  that  which  it  less  can  be  cognitive  what  for  or  all  was  once  continuum  tasks,  any  reading  is  and,  Cummins  automatized be  is  t a s k h a s become w e l l -  highly  l a n g u a g e a s an L 2 " are  and  vertical  practised,  well  is  c a p a c i t y becomes l e s s  is true  become  very  less  Thus,  the  writing  not  have  may  of  or  is  that there  demanding t h a n o t h e r s , demanding  it  that  learners  since this  speaking if  the  learner  capacity-limited  other  its  Now,  to  because of  the  therefore  changes a c c o r d i n g t o t h e d e g r e e t o w h i c h t h e learned or automatized.  including  and,  which  c o g n i t i v e l y demanding i n t e r m s o f a t t e n t i o n a l so  kind  unfamiliar  a  is  up  any  c o g n i t i v e r e s o u r c e s , and m o r e o v e r ,  than  quickly  freed  d e m a n d s " . How t h e s e  (of  a task  high attentional  slowly  the  do  simple:  i s c o s t l y i n terms of  accomplished  "attentional  as for  more  native  cognitivelyp.  15).  some l a n g u a g e t a s k s t h a t  have  more  cognitively  and t h a t t a s k s w h i c h a r e b o t h  cognitively-  context-reduced  are  make  them  (ibid.,  generally  more  related  T h e r e i s e v i d e n c e now t h a t t h e a t t e n t i o n a l system i s d i v i d e d i n t o two d i s t i n c t a n a t o m i c s y s t e m s one o f w h i c h s u b s e r v e s t h e s l o w e r c a p a c i t y - l i m i t e d p r o c e s s i n g , and t h e o t h e r t h e fast e s s e n t i a l l y u n l i m i t e d c a p a c i t y p r o c e s s i n g (Raichle et a l . , 1994). T h i s w i l l be d i s c u s s e d i n more d e t a i l i n c h a p t e r 2 . 4  64  to  academic  achievement.  continuum  refers  paralinguistic  to  Context the  "range  and s i t u a t i o n a l  support t h e language  as  defined  for  the  meaningful  of  cues"  (ibid.,  horizontal  [italics  p.  12)  added]  available  to  task.  Commentary The problem f o r t h i s continuum  is  not  McLaughlin's  reduce  information  of  cognitive  above,  cognitive  demands.  In  have  a  seen  be  narrow  we  re-examine that  of the  words,  if  Thus,  brain,  to  information some  that  is, if  range.  situation high  load . 5  To  have  and t h i s c a n o n l y  t h e c o g n i t i v e demands  simply  a wide  range  It  t o a second language is  the meaningfulness  T h e r o l e o f meaningfulness e l a b o r a t e d upon i n c h a p t e r 2. 5  exemplify  i n h i s native  this  point,  would  learner of  the it  of the  take  the  who h a s b e e n s c h o o l e d t o a  tongue.  F o r such a person, the  in capturing attention  65  of  importance p r e c i s e l y because  o f a second language l e a r n e r  academic l e v e l  the  some o f t h e  r e d u c e s t h e c o g n i t i v e l o a d , and t h i s comes a b o u t a s a r e s u l t attentional  of  cues which a r e not meaningful  a v a i l a b l e cues which i s o f primary  reduced  "the  (or i n f o r m a t i o n p r o c e s s i n g task)  n e c e s s a r i l y be a n y more h e l p f u l to  can  with the input,  p a r a l i n g u i s t i c and s i t u a t i o n a l  than  If  meaningful t o t h e l e a r n e r ,  are reduced.  embedded/reduced  demands.  other  i n the l e a r n e r ' s  i s already  the task  not  it  i n a given situation  come a b o u t w i t h f a m i l i a r i t y of  the context  o f r e l a t i o n s between e l e m e n t s "  i s already related information  free  statement  predetermination will  schema i s t h a t  will  be  familiarity  with the  required within i t academic  academic environment  would r e n d e r t h e  achievement  demanding t h a n unfamiliarity  for  in  the  someone w i t h o u t  meaningfulness of p a r a l i n g u i s t i c the  learning  more  language  cognitively  tenets the  of  tied  demanding.  notion  that  some  a  these  others.  To r e p e a t  when s o m e t h i n g i s m e a n i n g f u l , already  attention necessity helpful  been  system  learned thereby  it  renders the  for  and c o n s e q u e n t l y t h e y  disassociated  to  from  sake  reducing  less  of  15)  of  the  on  the  of  cognitive context  are not  have  contradict cognitively  clarity,  then,  and what  capacity-limited  demands.  i n order  Hence  for  it  the  to  be  orthogonal.  sensed that  other  particular  factors  the  such  axes as  cannot  the  be  cleanly  "personality,  (Cummins,  1984b,  and  pp.  l a n g u a g e u s e r s , and h e a l s o d o e s a p p e a r c a n n o t be c l e a n l y d i s a s s o c i a t e d f r o m  F o r i n s t a n c e , he a n s w e r s c r i t i c s who t a k e h i m t o  "vagueness  the  i n that both i n c l u d e a c o g n i t i v e dimension,  t o have r e c o g n i z e d t h a t they one a n o t h e r .  more  the  l e a r n i n g s t y l e " and " L l a n d / o r L2 p r o f i c i e n c y " 14,  situation  h a s a l r e a d y been l e a r n e d ,  demands  render  concepts support  Hypothesis, but  the  the  a x e s a s c o n c e p t u a l i z e d b y Cummins o v e r l a p p i n g  content  appears  Similarly,  cues would  intrinsically  f o r meaningfulness i n the  in information  Cummins  are  to  cognitively  "context-embedded"  that  tasks  and hence w i t h  and s i t u a t i o n a l  Note  tasks  less  academic t r a i n i n g .  a new c u l t u r e  to  language  language r e l a t e d  language  o f the L i n g u i s t i c Interdependence  demanding t h a n  has  learning of  second  w i t h t h e customs o f  and t h e  ambiguity  66  in  the  notion  of  task  'contextual  support'" and  (Cummins, 1984c,  external  particular  context,  t o the  objectively (ibid.,  p.72)  by  72).  along  These i n t e r n a l  b e i n g an i n f l u e n c e on t h e the  vertical  essence  which  he  means  internal  respectively  context  l a n g u a g e u s e r , and c o n t e x t w h i c h i s "more o r  specifiable  p.  by d i s t i n g u i s h i n g between  and  the  conceding  the  contextual  l o c a t i o n of  horizontal  that  context-embedded  the  continuum"  f a c t o r s he p e r c e i v e s as  any p a r t i c u l a r  continua,  continua  less  do  task  therefore overlap.  on b o t h  he  is  in  However,  he  c o n c e p t u a l i z e s these i n t e r n a l ; f a c t o r s as "degree of f a m i l i a r i t y  and  acceptance of the t a s k / a c t i v i t y "  are  dependent  on  past  cognitive  to  some  framework  as  learning extent.  delineated  without c l a r i f y i n g that these  and  must  Thus,  he  believing  therefore  sees  "that  no  be  need  these  considered  to  alter  the  [sociolinguistic]  i  f a c t o r s c a n be i n c o r p o r a t e d i n more d e t a i l up  to  now  without  dimensions"  It  will  (ibid.,  be  framework variable  argued, is  degree  brain  p.  cognition  of  two  in  that his  the  essential  effort  to  flaw  to  which  in  learning  "cognitive  itself  must  basic  isolate  a  i n Cummins' "cognitive"  language p r o f i c i e n c y .  emerging from n e u r o s c i e n t i f i c r e s e a r c h i s  p r o c e s s i n g and,  involved  parsimony  case  73).  however,  embodied  the  a s an i n d e p e n d e n t d i m e n s i o n o f  information the  relinquishing  t h a n has been the  since  is  integrated  into  is  undoubtedly  functioning"  as  it  determine  to  some  fundamental of b r a i n p r o c e s s i n g a b i l i t i e s  67  elucidating  every  learning  has  been  extent  even  i n c l u d i n g the  The  aspect  of  intimately defined, the  most  perception  of  ostensibly  argued  that  information.  attempting  "cognitive" misguided  objective  and  others  to as  In  designate "not  other some  cognitive"  words,  brain is  a  it  will  be  processes  as  futile  and  even  exercise.  How c a n c o g n i t i o n b e m e a s u r e d ? There  is  no d o u b t  purporting Not  only  to  that  measure  does  he  Cummins b e l i e v e s certain  accept  that  aspects of  the  results  theoretical  research  concepts,  without  (Cummins,  1977)  but  questioning  he  of  uses  their  attest to h i s  faith  well-conceived  ability,  (p.  Cognitive  not  significantly  Two  reasoning  Reference Tests for measure o f v e r b a l  matter-of-fact of  an  his  of own  comments  i n these measures:  (a n o n v e r b a l measure predict  French  subtests  of  Kuhlmann  the  T e s t d e s i g n e d t o measure v e r b a l  and g e n e r a l  indicative  in  Several  of  speaking  (subtest  4)  ability  Finch  (subtest  were a d m i n i s t e r e d .  U t i l i t y T e s t from the F r e n c h , E k s t r o m and P r i c e  The  research  development  tests  efficacy.  that.  4)  measures:  Intelligence 1)  did  i n the  these  S c o r e s on R a v e n ' s P r o g r e s s i v e M a t r i c e s intelligence)  tests  c o g n i t i o n do j u s t  i n v o l v i n g c o g n i t i v e measures as b e i n g v a l i d his  psychological  (1963)  Kit  C o g n i t i v e F a c t o r s was a d m i n i s t e r e d  divergence,  statement •i'  uncritical  of  ,  (p.  what  stance  68  The of  as  a  5)  these  towards  tests  the  measure  validity  of  is the  tests the  and e v e n what c o u n t s a s a c o g n i t i v e  latter  characteristic,  i s h a r d l y s u r p r i s i n g g i v e n t h e w i d e r a n g e o f phenomena  t h a t a r e i n c l u d e d under c o g n i t i o n . T h i s i s n o t t o is  unfailingly  example  to  particular test  uncritical  Cummins, 1984,  appears  though  towards  chaps.  question  the  2 and 3 ) ,  validity  situations, rather  itself.  of  which r e f l e c t  the  the  of  in  but  general  in  using  his  (see  tests  validity  a t one t i m e d e p l o r i n g t h e  limitations  of  IQ  tests  such  "dominant m i d d l e - c l a s s c u l t u r e  for  critiques  certain  than q u e s t i o n i n g the  For instance, while  appreciation  testing  s a y t h a t Cummins  as  the  he in  of  the  "lack  of  WISC-R"  e x p e r i e n c e s " and  i!  on  which  students  from  ESL backgrounds p e r f o r m  poorly  (Cummins,  i  1984a,  p.  46),  at  a later  as a v a l i d measure o f  t i m e he a p p e a r s t o  overall 1  Thus, result is  instruction in transfer  same  test  IQ:  i  through to  accept the  a  minority  the majority  seldom the case because of the  language  will  usually  language but the  opposite  lower s t a t u s of the  minority  language. It  i s important  t o n o t e t h a t what i s t r a n s f e r r e d  c o n c e p t u a l knowledge r a t h e r It  is this  is  primarily  than s p e c i f i c l i n g u i s t i c  elements.  c o n c e p t u a l knowledge t o g e t h e r  with i t s  linguistic  'i manifestations  that  is  measures.  F o r example,  Wechsler  Intelligence  subtest.  (Cummins,  b e i n g t a p p e d by most v e r b a l  academic  t h e b e s t p r e d i c t o r o f o v e r a l l IQ on t h e Scales for  1991,  p.  77) 69  Children i s  the  vocabulary  An  examination  of the vocabulary  subtest  i n question,  however,  r e v e a l s t h a t t h e " c o n c e p t u a l knowledge" t h a t i t i s t a p p i n g i n t o c a n be more a c c u r a t e l y  described as general  experience-dependent therefore if  this  (not t o mention  6  language-dependent)  n o t a v a l i d measure o f i n t e l l i g e n c e i s conceived  "basic" .  knowledge which i s h i g h l y  o f as independent  Interestingly  enough, t h i s  and i s  or cognitive  of  lived  ability  experience  i s precisely the point  or  which  Cummins made p r e v i o u s l y .  This  i s s u e o f what  cognitive different  ability  constitutes or  It  i s clear  in  h i s opinion,  subject  language  ability  f o r c o n c l u s i o n s on  will  be  treated  p e r s p e c t i v e s under t h e s e c t i o n on a n a l y t i c a l  Summary o f Cummins' v i e w  abilities  good e v i d e n c e  areas  cognition  on c o g n i t i o n  c o n s i s t s o f an inner  c a n be a p p l i e d  such  concerns.  on c o g n i t i o n  o n a n a l y s i s o f Cummins' s t a t e m e n t s  which  from  to  as language,  core  the learning  and t h a t  a p p l i c a t i o n w i l l be changes i n t h e c o g n i t i v e  of  of  (basic)  particular  the result abilities  that,  of  this  themselves,  Sattler (1982) n o t e s : " T h e V o c a b u l a r y s u b t e s t , a t e s t o f w o r d k n o w l e d g e , may i n v o l v e a v a r i e t y o f c o g n i t i v e f u n c t i o n s o r features including learning ability, fund o f information, richness of ideas, memory, concept formation, and language 6  development  -  that  may be  closely  related  to  the  child's  experiences and educational environment [ i t a l i c s added]" (p. 175). In s p i t e o f t h i s , he c o n c l u d e s t h a t t h e s u b t e s t " l i k e l y reflects their [the c h i l d r e n ' s ] ability to learn and t o accumulate information," " p r o v i d e s an e x c e l l e n t estimate of intellectual c a p a c i t y , " and " i s v a l u a b l e i n d e r i v i n g an index o f t h e e x a m i n e e ' s g e n e r a l m e n t a l c a p a c i t y " ( i b i d . ) . Hence Cummins i s m e r e l y e c h o i n g the accepted o p i n i o n o f p s y c h o l o g i c a l assessment e x p e r t s . 70  changes  which  accomplished. in  nature,  will  reflect  the  particular  The c o g n i t i v e a b i l i t i e s  w i t h t a s k s which r e q u i r e  information  being  process f a m i l i a r  more  information.  themselves are the  cognitively  demanding  there  is  a  information large  paralinguistic) demanding  than  Cognitively  processing theory of  meaningful  and  situational  those  supported tasks  requiring high attention.  than  which  cues by  are  will  only  in  In terms o f  that  be  a  less  small  general its  tasks  speech  qualitatively  a  from in  to  the  which (e.g.  cognitively  range  equated  ability  the p u t a t i v e  generate  this  task-related  b i l i n g u a l i s m even more s o due t o to  those  i s evident  on c o g n i t i o n , l a n g u a g e i s c o n s i d e r e d t o be e x t r e m e l y  actions  unfamiliar  A l t h o u g h Cummins d i d n o t c l a r i f y  range  demanding  tasks  hierarchical  processing of  p o i n t with respect t o the r o l e of c o g n i t i o n , i t a p p l i c a t i o n of  learning  of  cues.  with  tasks  effect  change  effective,  ability  of  different  and  bilingual kind  feedback data f o r c o g n i t i o n t o a c t upon. C o g n i t i v e f a c t o r s are  of  seen  i  as  separate  factors  but  mediating  from as  capable  effect  internal  factors,  said  operate  to  internal  social,  of  political,  of  being  language.  termed by  and e x t e r n a l .  attitudinal  influenced  Since i t  " c h i l d input"  processing data As f a r  by  and them  educational through  the  c a n a l s o be i n f l u e n c e d by factors,  from  the  c o g n i t i o n may be environment,  a s measurement o f c o g n i t i v e  both  abilities  i s c o n c e r n e d , Cummins shows a g e n e r a l a c c e p t a n c e o f t h e v a l i d i t y familiar  tests  of  cognitive ability,  t h a t c o g n i t i v e growth  and a l s o a p p e a r s t o c o n s i d e r  i s m i r r o r e d by a c a d e m i c a c h i e v e m e n t .  •I 71  of  This portrait of cognition will,be what c a n be g l e a n e d  about  such  and  as  learning  compared i n a l a t e r c h a p t e r  the underlying processes attention,  from  a  of cognition,  consideration  c o n n e c t i o n i s m and n e u r o s c i e n t i f i c d i s c o v e r y on t h e i n n e r of  (2)  The  with  of  workings  the brain.  Thresholds, l i n g u i s t i c  concept  o f a threshold  always been i l l - d e f i n e d original nature  presentation  i n these  What  competence and d e g r e e o f b i l i n g u a l i s m  are  level  of  a s Cummins h i m s e l f  readily  o f t h e i d e a he i n q u i r e s  admits.  into  its  In t h e  potential  words:  the  characteristics  of  b i l i n g u a l competence? I n t h e f i r s t be  competence h a s  linguistic  defined  i n absolute  terms;  this  threshold  level  place the threshold  rather,  it  is likely  of  cannot to  vary  b o t h w i t h t h e amount o f t i m e t h a t i s s p e n t t h r o u g h L2 and w i t h the  type  of  cognitive  through L 2 . . . .  operations  that  The t h r e s h o l d i s a l s o l i k e l y  must  be  expressed  t o vary  according  to the type of c o g n i t i v e operations a p p r o p r i a t e stage o f c o g n i t i v e development.  According depends external of  to  on b o t h  description,  internal  situational  cognitive  large  this  development  e x t e n t on p a s t  then,  (stage  factors of  (Cummins,  of  relating a  learner  the  1 9 7 6 , p . 24)  linguistic  cognitive  itself  and  But the stage  dependent  experience as w e l l as i n d i v i d u a l  72  threshold  development)  to cognition. is  for a child's  to a  a b i l i t y and  must  therefore  addition,  be d i s t i n c t  the cognitive  change from l e a r n i n g  f o r each  operations  situation  individual  demanded  to learning  own d e f i n i n g m u s i n g s , t h e r e f o r e ,  relationship  the threshold level  times  drawn  between  level  not  child  competence reading  has reached  i n t h e second  o f whether  cognitive  of bilingual  unspecifiable  the  given the  and c o g n i t i v e  a d e c i s i o n a s t o whether  threshold  language  would  level have  of  t o b e made  or not the c h i l d could perform  t a s k s t h a t were b e i n g demanded o f h i m o r h e r . H e n c e , t h e  cognitive  tasks,  considered  which  appropriate  may o r to  development and e d u c a t i o n a l t h a t what e x p l a i n s  may n o t b e  the  child's  criticism  of  whatsoever  into  what  cognitive  bilingual  These a r e p o i n t s which w i l l s e e a l s o Hawson ( i n p r e s s - a ) .  tasks i s  competence,  and t h e c o n s t r u c t i s  Moreover,  competence  h a s happened  these  of bilingual  have l e v e l l e d  a t Cummins' CALP c o n s t r u c t . level  of  t o perform  is circular  E d e l s k y e t a l . (1983)  threshold  stage  related,  7  the c h i l d ' s a b i l i t y  c a n b e s e e n t h a t t h e argument  a tautology.  language  certain  c i r c u m s t a n c e s . A n d when o n e c o n s i d e r s  t h a t she has a t t a i n e d t h e t h r e s h o l d l e v e l  but  on a  adequately the  o f the threshold i s the c a p a b i l i t y of performing  7  or  linguistic  definition  it  on any  a p p e a r s t o have  of bilingualism  by t h e T h r e s h o l d H y p o t h e s i s ,  will  B y Cummins'  (see s e c t i o n 1 . 2 ) . Furthermore,  ability a  of the learner  a c o n c l u s i o n w h i c h Cummins h i m s e l f  reached i n recent  any a g e . In  situation.  c o m p e t e n c e must b e c o n s i d e r e d i n t r i n s i c a l l y precise basis,  at  t h e same t y p e o f t h e concept o f a  provides  i n the brain  no  insight  of the child to  be expanded upon i n c h a p t e r 73  3,  promote  the required  learning  directing  educational  academic  achievement,  and i s t h e r e f o r e  efforts is  which,  given  presumably  of l i t t l e  Cummins'  the ultimate  value  interest  in in  aim o f h i s  hypothesis.  Another d i f f i c u l t y of  bilingual  a r i s i n g out of the notion  competence,  of a threshold  one t h a t h a s been r a i s e d by M a r t i n - J o n e s  and Romaine and was a l l u d e d t o by Cummins h i m s e l f the  conceptualization  competence) Romaine  which  of  it  level  language  promotes.  (1986), t h e v e r y  (or  proficiency  According  idea o f " l e v e l s  (1991, p . 8 5 ) , i s  to  linguistic  Martin-Jones  of l i n g u i s t i c  and  competence"  a t t r a c t s q u a n t i t a t i v e d e s c r i p t o r s o f t h e same t y p e a s t h o s e b o r n o f a "container  metaphor"  of l i n g u i s t i c  competence:  The l i t e r a t u r e on " s e m i l i n g u a l i s m " a b o u n d s w i t h t e r m s "full  competence,"  "subtractive competence implicit "full" are, the  "threshold  bilingualism".... h a s s o f a r been metaphor:  or "partially  full."  belief  competent  that  monolingual  Cummins'  theories  i s such  such  a thing  or bilingual  do t e n d  i t seems t h a t  linguistic  i n terms  o f an  implicitly  as an i d e a l ,  foster fully  s p e a k e r who h a s a f u l l o r  ( p . 32)  to attract  74  and  as "semilingualism"  because they  complete v e r s i o n o f a language,  That  "additive"  a c o n t a i n e r w h i c h c a n be e i t h e r Terms  misleading there  Thus,  conceptualized  "container"  i n our view,  level,"  such as  "container  metaphor"  terminology  can  designed  follow  other of  to  be  researchers)  language  seen up  in  but  study  by  on Cummins'  on t h e  Collier  research  s i g n i f i c a n c e of  proficiency.  proficiency"  a  Collier  not  even d e s c r i b e s i t s  (1987)  (as  the  only  well  it.  Immigrants  language  in  of  the  [ i t a l i c s added] the  context  context  and  uses  the  pragmatics,  and  (listening,  speaking, of  (language  arts,  must  syntax,  reading,  language)  of  "full  proficiency needs t o  acquire to  a  use  second  develop  full  (including  phonetics,  phonology,  vocabulary,  discourse,  and  all  writing,  for  mathematics,  term  l a n g u a g e domains of  paralinguistics)  the  acquirer  s c h o o l i n g need  semantics  morphology,  knowledge  who  proficiency in a l l  structures  inflectional  age  of  that  nature:  i n which the  school  as  was  BICS/CALP dichotomy  Second l a n g u a g e i s a c q u i r e d t o v a r y i n g d e g r e e s o f d e p e n d i n g on t h e  which  use  in  language  skills  and  metalinguistic  all  content  areas  s c i e n c e and s o c i a l s t u d i e s ) .  (p.  618)  W h i l e d e s c r i p t i o n s o f t h i s t y p e c a n be u s e f u l i n d e m o n s t r a t i n g how c o m p l e x a p r o b l e m t h e word " f u l l "  i s redundant,  t h a t demanded by t h e even  adequate  understanding terminology.  to of  s c h o o l age i m m i g r a n t  is  faced with,  s i n c e t h e p r o f i c i e n c y needed i s  t a s k s t h e m s e l v e s , a n d may be n e i t h e r i  the  demands o f  street  other  slang  or  tasks,  the  precisely full  nor  example,  the  technologically  The p o i n t b e i n g made by c r i t i c s 75  as f o r  just  specific  l i k e Mart i n - J o n e s  and  Romaine  is  that  no one  precise  knowledge  of  language  is  consider,  moreover,  is  all  virtually  fully  competent  highly  specific  impossible  that the  for  a  terminology  in  a  language  codes  within  in a  target  single  individual.  related  to  the  that  They  container  metaphor  reflects been  the  i d e o l o g i c a l bias of a l i n g u i s t i c  primarily  monolingual  concerned  speakers  in  with the  a h i g h degree  of  idealized  speech  E u r o p e and t h e U n i t e d S t a t e s ; have  the  They  argue  that  d e f i n e d by t h e  1986,  in  competence  communities  communities w h i c h ,  stability,  autonomy,  and p o s s e s s h i g h l y c o d i f i e d s t a n d a r d and Romaine,  t h e o r y which has  of  western  on t h e  whole,  and  languages.  of  historicity, (Martin-Jones  p.33)  many  socio-cultural  settings  s p e c i f i c circumstances of the  setting  "mixed  codes"  emerge,  though  i,  these are often  stigmatized  t h e demographic i n s t a b i l i t y i n Europe today, of  full  these  proficiency  critics,  linguistic language  to  will  of  some o f  is  to of  try  to  define  real  socioeconomic  essentially  a return to  the  abilities,  the  evolve.  Thus,  Notice  concerns of 76  and  that critics  this  level  i n which  and may p r o m o t e  cognitive  notion  according  threshold  s p e c i f i c context  Given  nations  o b s e r v e how t h e  an a p p r o p r i a t e  misguided,  groups.  language g r o u p s . old established  to  i n a language w i l l  be u s e d i s the  the  be i n t e r e s t i n g  competence o u t s i d e o f  assessment certain  it  by t h e m a j o r i t y  a  of the  negative  linguistic, argument  worried  to  about  of is the  problems  of  isolating  a  psycholinguistic  p r o f i c i e n c y a n d how c o g n i t i o n was b e i n g  Related of  to the issues  bilingualism  conceptualize (1979)  notes  t h e degree many  associated  with  "balanced  bilinguals"  bilingualism criteria  or  of  language  conceptualized.  surrounding the concept of threshold  and t h e c o n t a i n e r  that  factor  of  metaphor  positive  of  bilingualism  of the studies cognitive and  unilingualism  is  that  a  i n which  of  how t o  learner.  MacNab  b i l i n g u a l i s m was  and academic  "unilinguals"  e s t a b l i s h e d by P e a l a n d L a m b e r t  results  whose  was d e t e r m i n e d  levels  used  degree  of  according  to the  i n 1 9 6 2 . Cummins  adapted  i some o f t h e s e only  criteria  the validity  assumptions  i n several  studies.  of the c r i t e r i a ,  of their  originators.  MacNab q u e s t i o n s , n o t  but also  He b e l i e v e d  p r o c e d u r e s b i a s e d t h e sample s e l e c t i o n " t o w a r d s and d u l l e r There  unilinguals". is  criterion the  some  of the basic  that  the selection  brighter  A s he n o t e s :  certainly has altered  b a s i s o f numbers  reason  to  think  t h e sample alone....  that  the  where t h e e a r l i e r  way o n  [negative]  t h e language  u s e d by P e a l and Lambert d e f i n e d o v e r h a l f o f  the otherwise e l i g i b l e t e n - y e a r - o l d s as n e i t h e r u n i l i n g u a l . (MacNab, 1 9 7 9 , p p . 2 3 8 - 2 3 9 )  !  Whereas A n i s f e l d  'balance*  i n some f u n d a m e n t a l  s t u d i e s t e n d e d t o t a k e whole s c h o o l s o r c l a s s e s , balance c r i t e r i a  bilinguals  (formerly Peal)  •  b i l i n g u a l nor  •  and Lambert 77  (1969)  argue t h a t " t h e  b a l a n c e measure would i n no way p e n a l i z e two  languages:  (1979) to  learn  two  well,  languages is  should  (p.  object  commented  on t h e  biased  their  in  stranger  t o use the sample.  to  the  severely p.  fact  all  the  least,  of  (see  the  on d i f f e r e n t  equal,  the  like  (p.  32) .  competence  in  biUnguals.  Martin-Jones  both  they  the  of  pp.  as Carey  to  grounds; they  even  people  and  can  Romaine  notion  78  of  Lambert  and  continued  for  bias is  in  given  bilingualism"  results  (Reynolds,  (1993a) h a s  indicated, results  applicability  aside.  the  balanced  note  notion that,  of  as d e f i n e d  can b e d e s c r i b e d a s 1  necessarily  to  rather  157-158),  potential  the  one  unintentionally  "balanced  of  tend  themselves  Cummins w o u l d h a v e  object  languages  "the  and  wind e n c o u r a g i n g p o s i t i v e  (1986)  Thus  1991,  concerns about  not  languages"  when  sample b e i n g  balanced b i l i n g u a l  though  terms,  point  Peal  in  MacNab  explored  more t r u e when c o n s i d e r a t i o n  swept  bilingualism  P e a l and L a m b e r t ,  125) ,  emphasizing  that  Reynolds,  the time,  a n d Romaine  practical  this  generalizability  Martin-Jones  has  on  the p o l i t i c a l it  (p.  s h o u l d be  strange  requirement  Perhaps a t  was s o s t r o n g t h a t  who  seems  the  the  slow"  than  developed knowing o f  is  limits  i n Canada a t  rather  that researchers  that  155).  It  possibility  This  equally  certainly  criticism  criteria  the  It  own s t u d y  still  be  equally,  241) .  to  to  c h i l d who was s l o w  assumption t h a t a slower c h i l d w i l l  doubtful.  assumed"  1991,  had o n l y  concludes t h a t "the  learn  than  he  the  full  who  knowledge  have  a  potentially contend,  low be  however,  balanced  by  "one  of level  two of  balanced that  in  bilingualism  h a s . . . functioned bilingualism kinds  of  a s an i m p l i c i t  and h a s been u s e d a s a y a r d s t i c k  bilingualism  'inadequate'  synonym f o r ' g o o d '  and/or  have  been  ascribed t o balanced b i l i n g u a l i s m , rather  than  determining there  is  itself,  o f such s t a t e s no g e n e r a l  development 34).  t h e term  against  measured  'underdeveloped'"  or  which  therefore,  among m o n o l i n g u a l ,  about  t h a t they  object t o  as the reliance  "the 'normal'  l e t alone  bilingual  of the  positive  to l i e i n the association cognitive  bilinguals  with  and t h a t  negative  and  cognitive  then, with  o f "unbalanced"  academic  results,  a s MacNab a n d R e y n o l d s h a v e p o i n t e d  out, rest  1  on t r e a c h e r o u s g r o u n d . I n h i s p r o f o u n d a n d d e t a i l e d research  of  c h i l d r e n " (p.  bilinguals  and academic r e s u l t s ,  j associations which,  o f balanced  when  course  T h e b a s i s f o r t h e o b j e c t i o n o f M a r t i n - J o n e s and R o m a i n e ,  appears  as  i s t h e value  on assessment p r o c e d u r e s a t a t i m e  agreement  other  and s t i g m a t i z e d  (p. 33). It  as w e l l  'complete'  on t h e c o g n i t i v e  analysis of the  consequences o f b i l i n g u a l i s m ,  Reynolds  (1991) c o n c l u d e s :  Due  Given  t o the prevalence  o f design problems  difficulties  I have d e s c r i b e d , t h e c e n t r a l  be  ourselves  asking  is  not  bilinguality  affects  the  reverse  i s true,  but  whether  all  [italics  added],  (p.  159)  t h e degree  whether  of uncertainty  79  is  i n a l l areas  logical  q u e s t i o n we s h o u l d the  cognitive performance there  and other  thesis  that  i s t r u e o r whether a relationship  of this  field  at  of  study,  1.3.3  this  is  a q u e s t i o n w h i c h demands s e r i o u s  P h i l o s o p h i c a l concerns  The T h r e s h o l d H y p o t h e s i s a s a d e f i c i t [T]he  assumption  child's of  it)  of  an  i n explaining the  view i s ,  Cummins'  "threshold  1986,  31)  p.  others,  ( 1 9 8 4 ) , Wald  most  (1984),  adequately perceive  a  uncritical  acceptance of  This  a  position  a deficit  theory  (Martin-Jones  Edelsky  cognitively  with  lack  et  al.  on  societal  respect  which  if  expressed &  shared Canale  What  to  such  a  status whose  Edelsky  et  basis  to  as  knowledge (1983)  (or  achieve They  reflecting  quo, w i t h i n  al.  these  students  able  is  academic valued.  take  great  A l t h o u g h i t i s e v i d e n t t h a t t h e t e r m " t h e o r y " s h o u l d n o t be a p p l i e d t o t h e T h r e s h o l d H y p o t h e s i s , much o f t h e d i s c u s s i o n a r o u n d d e f i c i t c h a r g e s a g a i n s t t h e l a t t e r h a s e m p l o y e d t h e word " t h e o r y " . F o r t h e s a k e o f a c c u r a c y and s i m p l i c i t y , t h e r e f o r e , t h i s d i s c u s s i o n has been r e c o r d e d as i t o c c u r r e d i n t h e l i t e r a t u r e . 8  80  in  Romaine,  (1983),  (1989).  not  for  making.  i n an a c a d e m i c e n v i r o n m e n t .  founded the  the  (or  and Romaine e x p r e s s e d a b o v e i s  notably  with  as  i n the  i s the d e s i g n a t i o n of m i n o r i t y  designation  and w i t h o u t ,  is  knowledge"  hypothesis."  administered  circles  such  most c l e a r l y  as b e i n g d e f i c i e n t  on t e s t s  linguistic  and Commins and M i r a m o n t e s  authors are p r o t e s t i n g any s t u d e n t )  variable  as we s e e i t ,  The o p i n i o n o f M a r t i n - J o n e s several  8  outcome o f e d u c a t i o n a l programmes  children constitutes  This d e f i c i t  hypothesis  intervening  s o - c a l l e d "conceptual  minority  by  inquiry.  umbrage:  U n d e r l y i n g b o t h Cummins' and S w a i n ' s a t t e m p t s differential  to  account  s c h o o l s u c c e s s among s e c o n d l a n g u a g e l e a r n e r s  the premise t h a t the predominant c u r r e n t d e f i n i t i o n o f in  school  and  acceptable,  particularly  success  reasonable, e t c . ;  in  literacy  t h a t what i s ,  not question the usual d e f i n i t i o n  as  mechanics, that  the  to  do  literacy  purposeless  tasks  " r e a l event"  is  as  occurs.  right,  to  the  definition  of  work-sheet-type  exercises  on  definitions  with performance i n d i s c r e t e ,  intended  success  of r e a d i n g as the a b i l i t y  v o c a b u l a r y , synonyms, a n a l o g i e s , e t c . ;  equate  when t h e  ability  is  s h o u l d b e . They do  p e r f o r m w e l l on a r e a d i n g a c h i e v e m e n t t e s t , writing  for  practice  for  otherwise  some o t h e r  time  This unquestioning acceptance of  c u r r e n t s c h o o l d e f i n i t i o n s and c u r r e n t s c h o o l c u r r i c u l a i s  the  f l a w t h a t we b e l i e v e  (p.  leads to a l l  the  rest  of  the  errors,  4)  What  is  tasks, tests.  s u g g e s t e d by these  students  these  authors  might  perform  is  that  much b e t t e r  "real  than  event"  they  do  on  T h i s v i e w i s s u p p o r t e d by t h e work o f Commins and M i r a m o n t e s i  (1989),  a study of  d o m i n a n c e was n o t  " f o u r H i s p a n i c b i l i n g u a l s t u d e n t s whose l a n g u a g e clearly  defined  and whose a c a d e m i c  was p e r c e i v e d b y t e a c h e r s t o be l i m i t e d by t h e i r in  given  both  E n g l i s h and S p a n i s h "  over a v a r i e t y  of  (p.  448).  language  abilities  Observing these  c o n t e x t s b o t h i n s i d e and o u t s i d e t h e 81  achievement  students  classroom,  they concluded that the teachers and  academic  abilities  performance,  and t h a t  them was " t h e  others  precisely student to  do  students  what was  is  on  intelligence  the  in  i n the  formal  w i s e n e s s " by E d e l s k y e t  al.  the  school (p.  the  test is  ability  tests"  importance a given may  be  found"  (p.  of  language t e s t , better  viewed  (Canale,  1984,  is  inability,  being or  standardized the  standards  of  even  to  tests. of  the  a  that  terms  disadvantage"  similar  as  created  p.  38).  a  lack  do  has  vein,  well been  are  such  to is the  motivation  on  tests  termed  of  "test-  (as o p p o s e d t o Canale  that  rather  than  simply  then, in  "deficiency"  is  quo, In  ability  82  demands o f  on  results or  that  simply  an  expected  on  according  to  reflect  o t h e r w o r d s , what i s b e i n g  by t h e  the  notion  as  determined  deficit"  of  observed  is  a n d may o r may n o t  "cognitive  being defined  test  i s the  perform  real-  performance  light,  deficiency of  to  speaks  this  to  status  as  Unless  any  "In  desire,  underlying cognitive d e f i c i t . is  system,  ;  and comments:  This  Relevance,  ;  these p r o t e s t a t i o n s ,  a  for  (1983) , and d e f i n e d a s "an a b i l i t y  In  labelled  467) .  if  " s o c i a l i s a t i o n and a c c u l t u r a t i o n "  Underpinning a l l what  4) .  context  situations.  i n c o r p o r a t e s a d e s i r e t o do w e l l on a r t i f i c i a l world)  classroom  academic  little  measures  Li  linguistic  d e s i r e to perform w e l l  demands o f  Thus,  "cognitive"  in  relevance"  system, there  tests.  or  the  lacking  "buys i n t o "  of  the  based on t h e i r  lacking  is reflected  and s a t i s f y  what  well  the  e s s e n t i a l element  except perhaps as i t please  of  had u n d e r e s t i m a t e d  and the  some  implied  "cognitive society  as  w e l l as those of the t a s k , for  a positive  the task. an  It  uncertain  which  relate  attitude  is  demands w h i c h i n c o r p o r a t e t h e towards  i m p l i e d by t h e  footing  for  cognitive  the  the  successful  accomplishment of  a u t h o r s above t h a t t h i s founding of  benefits  to  the  necessity  theories academic  i s at  or  best  hypotheses  performance  of  learners.  For  his  part,  in  Cummins  strongly  "deficit  theory"  an a r t i c l e defends  written his  allegations  theoretical  contention  is  that  constitute  t h e y have l e d d i r e c t l y  Swain,  constructs  against  1983):  i  the i  made do n o t  with M e r r i l l  (Cummins a n d S w a i n ,  : Our  jointly  theoretical .  a deficit to  d i s t i n c t i o n s we h a v e  •i  p o s i t i o n ; on t h e  contrary,  an i n c r e a s e d a w a r e n e s s o n t h e  part  i o f many N o r t h A m e r i c a n e d u c a t o r s o f school  programs  and  educational d e f i c i t s  In  an  effort  to  personnel  in minority  u n d e r s t a n d how h i s  have been r e a d i n t h i s  light,  h a v i n g d e f i n e d what i n t h e i r  are  actively  students,  theoretical  (p.  current creating  23)  constructs could  he c r i t i c i s e s E d e l s k y e t  al.  eyes c o n s t i t u t e s a d e f i c i t  comments:  In  t h e ways i n w h i c h  for  not  theory  and  1  t h e a b s e n c e o f any a n a l y s i s o f t h i s  that  they  base t h e i r  view  attributes  of  deficit minority  83  issue,  allegation children  we must c o n c l u d e  on t h e  (and  all  fact  that  children)  we as  relevant  to their  of  overall  an  educational performance, causal  model  educational,  and o t h e r  in this  o f w h i c h we a r e  by  area  Edelsky  implicitly  et  al.)  factors.  or e x p l i c i t l y  involving Virtually  aware  invoke  context  sociopolitical,  all  other  theories  (including  those  endorsed  similar  ...  w i t h i n the  (ibid.,  causal p.  models,  either  26)  Commentary Though  Cummins'  before  him  persuasive, for  lengthy,  citation  that of which  in  the  et  of  et  all,  al.  al.,  it  is  compounding  Hypothesis,  on  many  interesting  p.  language, of  the  to  rather his  2),  or  charges  counts,  even  of  ability  cloak  the  academic  issues.  talks  of  benefitting  from  opposite  of  the  of  the  "conceptual  degree  charges,  however,  84  he  be  implies  linguistic  the  which  Threshold "cognitive  advantages" scale.  avoids  the  linguistic  and one  suffering  bilingualism  the  deficit"  example o f  achievement,  "cognitive  in  This confusion  another  in  cause  charge t o  Hypothesis  Secondly,  students  that,  a "cognitive  discussed previously,  and  of  a  note  laid  highly  breed  "deficit"  than  and c o g n i t i o n i s y e t  concepts  Cummins  ends  the  to  Threshold  disadvantages"  discussion  theory"  t o by M a r t i n - J o n e s and Romaine.  and c o g n i t i v e  serves  suggest  1983,  as r e f e r r e d  education,  ability,  and,  a b o v e , he h a s i n t e r p r e t e d  Edelsky  deficit"  "deficit  depth,  an " e d u c a t i o n a l d e f i c i t "  (Edelsky  only  of  t h e r e a r e some d a n g l i n g i s s u e s w h i c h s t i l l  concern. F i r s t  first  of  is  refutation  the  In  at his  terms  "advantages" and "disadvantages," p r e f e r r i n g i n s t e a d t o r e f e r t o l e a r n e r " a t t r i b u t e s " and " i n d i v i d u a l d i f f e r e n c e s . " In d o i n g so, he appears t o be acknowledging t h a t t h e l a t t e r the former which c a r r y i m p l i c i t l y  a r e more n e u t r a l than  t h e n o t i o n o f a judgement, o r a t  l e a s t a r e f e r e n c e base against which performances can be compared. The  very  use o f t h e terms "advantage" and "disadvantage"  i n the  e l a b o r a t i o n o f t h e t h e o r e t i c a l c o n s t r u c t s , t h e r e f o r e , would appear t o support t h e c o n t e n t i o n s  o f Cummins' c r i t i c s w i t h r e s p e c t  d e f i c i t p o s i t i o n charge. E v i d e n t l y , what he p e r c e i v e s  to a  as b e i n g o f  value are indeed the academic c r i t e r i a s e t by the s t a t u s quo, s i n c e it  i s a g a i n s t such c r i t e r i a t h a t t h e performances o f t h e students  are  judged.  Thirdly,  the modifier  "cognitive"  in  "cognitive  disadvantage o r advantage" i s not n e u t r a l i n value as i t i s used i n education.  Since  cognition  f u n c t i o n i n g which n u r t u r e s  i s considered  t o be a f a c e t o f b r a i n  t h i n k i n g and i t s u n d e r l y i n g  processes  (as opposed t o emotion, v o l i t i o n ,  and m o t o r i c f u n c t i o n i n g )  especially  Hence, t o say t h a t  revered  by e d u c a t o r s .  i t is  someone i s  c o g n i t i v e l y disadvantaged i s t o pronounce t h a t he o r she i s i n a state  o f double  jeopardy  educationally,  and c o n v e r s e l y ,  t o be  c o g n i t i v e l y advantaged i s t o be doubly b l e s s e d . That t h i s view o f c o g n i t i o n i s i n need o f r e v i s i o n , w i l l be broached i n and  chapters 2  4.  In c o n c l u s i o n , then, i t appears t h a t , i n s p i t e o f p r o t e s t a t i o n s t o the c o n t r a r y ,  t h e r e i s some j u s t i f i c a t i o n  f o r the " d e f i c i t  i n t h e making" charges l e v e l l e d a t Cummins' T h r e s h o l d 85  theory  Hypothesis. ,  That  it  was n e v e r h i s i n t e n t t o c r e a t e a d e f i c i t  evident,  however,  and  it  is  equally  a p p l i c a t i o n s o f Cummins' t h e o r e t i c a l effects  f o r many m i n o r i t y  Research t r a d i t i o n It  group  and c h o i c e o f  evident  theoretical  that  very  practical  c o n s t r u c t s have had b e n e f i c i a l  learners.  data  i s n o t a b l e t h a t t h e s t u d i e s upon w h i c h t h e  and r e l a t e d  hypothesis i s  Threshold Hypothesis  constructs are b u i l t  are  i n the  tradition  of s c i e n t i f i c i n q u i r y i n t h a t they are e m p i r i c a l i n nature with d e p e n d e n t v a r i a b l e b e i n g a p e r f o r m a n c e s c o r e on a s t a n d a r d i s e d of  some s o r t ,  d e p e n d e n c e on t e s t s h a s drawn f i r e  test  s i t u a t i o n as s p e c i f i c t o s c h o o l c u l t u r e .  perform  well  on  tests  is  seen  as  f r o m c r i t i c s who v i e w  a  On t h i s v i e w ,  learned  t o do w e l l on t e s t s .  In  short,  good p e r f o r m a n c e on t e s t s  some unknown e x t e n t on t h e d e g r e e o f a more g e n e r a l v e i n ,  Edelsky et  a c c u l t u r a t i o n of al.  (1983)  are  the  ability  response,  n e c e s s i t a t e s b o t h a l e a r n i n g p e r i o d and m o t i v a t i o n t o w a r d s  In  test  academic o r p s y c h o l o g i c a l . As has been n o t e d above,  this  to  the  which  learning i s due  the  to  student.  critical  of  the  dependence on d a t a r e p r e s e n t i n g t h e p h i l o s o p h i c a l p e r s p e c t i v e o f single research tradition: separate  confounding  notion for a n a l y s i s . It transforming  its  "Research i n t h i s  variables  and  isolate  some  attempts  to  particular  t h u s r i s k s m i s r e p r e s e n t i n g human e x i s t e n c e ,  interactive,  something s i m p l i f i e d ,  to  tradition  a  static,  constitutive  nature  and n o n - i n t e r a c t i v e "  T h i s c o m p l a i n t i s echoed by M a r t i n - J o n e s a n d Romaine i  86  (p.  . . .  into  5).  (1986,  p.  29)  who n o t e t h a t " [ l ] a n g u a g e  s k i l l s c a n n o t be n e a t l y  compartmentalized  i n t h e way t h a t Cummins s u g g e s t s , " and t h a t t h e a s s u m p t i o n " t h a t i s p o s s i b l e to separate a n a l y t i c a l l y competence without questionable. Miramomtes, research nature  These  1989)  in  of  differences argue,  for  within  with  of  usage"  others  so  that  language is  highly  (Commins  a more n a t u r a l i s t i c the  and  approach to interactive  it  to  be  analytical  or  at  i s averaged data which " r a r e l y within  ranges  that  g r o u p s , making i t  naturalistic  inquiry  these  least  group d e s i g n a t i o n s .  from another e n t i r e  response to  r e s u l t s have a l s o been c r i t i c i s e d  differences,  larger  r e s e a r c h o p t i o n by t h e s e  In  along  failing  individual  among d i f f e r e n t  then,  context  learning,  standardized test  clusterings  different  language  authors  highlighting  or  authors,  the  aspects of  l a n g u a g e l e a r n i n g c a n be d o c u m e n t e d .  these  (1983)  to  are i n favour of  second  Paradoxically, by  reference  different  it  give appear  group" is  rise  (p.  viewed  enough small  group  As E d e l s k y e t analyses the to  that  6) .  For t h i s  as  the  means  group  reason  more  al.  ranges  different  an e n t i r e  in  is  also,  informative  authors.  critiques,  Cummins a n d S w a i n  (1983,  p.  28)  have n o t e d t h a t " a u t h e n t i c r e a d i n g measurement p r o c e d u r e s " s u c h a s m i s c u e a n a l y s i s and c l o z e t e s t s do r e l a t e reading test require  scores,  standardized  and t h a t many o f t h e t e s t s t h e y h a v e d e v e l o p e d  students to read "real  newspaper a r t i c l e s ,  strongly to  poetry,  life"  texts  like  "printed  stories,  r e c i p e s , magazine c l i p p i n g s " and s o o n .  87  Cummins  also  points  out  that  the  results  of  these  tests  and  s t a n d a r d i z e d r e a d i n g t e s t s a r e c o n s i s t e n t . T h o u g h Cummins d o e s n o t endorse  the  minority  widespread  or  provide  majority  useful  considers  contends, their  of  standardized  students,  information  universal  unsupported"  use  he  does  under  (ibid.,  p.  29).  believe  certain  condemnation  of  "A more  tests  can  circumstances,  and  them  et  al.'s]  prejudicial  for  "simplistic  constructive  which t e s t s  are nonsense"  ' current  some g r o u p s o f  that  i.e.  and  strategy",  t h e ways i n  assessment  students,  either  they  "would be t o document f o r p r a c t i t i o n e r s  [Edelsky  for  he  which  practices  the  are  c o n d i t i o n s under  (ibid.).  Commentary In  spite  points  of  he  appears  has  to  situation cloze  the  validity  chosen to  have  to  Cummins' a r g u m e n t s  address,  overlooked.  whether  test;  of  the  test  perform  there  First, be  well  a  a  are  on t h e  two  test  any  issues  situation  standardized  on  test,  a  larger  ramifications.  This  is,  in  " a c c u l t u r a t i o n " to the  s c h o o l system o r ,  "test-wiseness".  changing the  would  not  documenting groups,  Thus  necessarily the  ways  in  lead  to  which  a  part,  of  changed  tests  are  do w e l l  or  badly  while  88  their  test  what  an  al.  item  result.  do  a be  and  meant  by  term  it,  on  a  Second,  prejudicial  confreres  or  must  is  he  test  situation  to  o r s u b g r o u p s , o f s t u d e n t s w o u l d n o t e x p l a i n why  students  a  student  as E d e l s k y e t  nature  which is  reading  knowledgeable o f the g e n e r a l meaningfulness o f a t e s t its  particular  test even  certain  individual  not.  Hence,  although standardized tests "broad  strokes"  parameters  validity  may p r o y i d e u s e f u l within  ( d i c t a t e d by t h e  the p r e c i s e nature  actual  attempt  at  failure.  elucidating  Nevertheless,  that  it  led to  point  is  items),  (1989)  they  the  test  cannot  probe  learns a language.  However,  i n such a s i t u a t i o n , to  any  be doomed  c a n s e r v e a s c h e c k s on results  and p r e v e n t  to out  information researchers  sweeping c o n c l u s i o n s which have t o o  faulty  often  theorizing.  b e i n g made by c r i t i c s  provides  of  with a  ethnographic studies of the type c a r r i e d  from making the k i n d o f  The major  test  p r o c e s s would appear  obtained through standardized t e s t  past  constraints  interacting  this  by Comrains and Miramontes  i n the  the  o f how an i n d i v i d u a l  g i v e n t h e number o f v a r i a b l e s  information  "top-down"  of  standardized  information  which  is  testing  is  shaped t o  a  I high  degree  that  "bottom-up"  counteract  by t h e  these  p h i l o s o p h i c a l biases of  considerations biases,  must  especially  be where  the  researchers,  taken human  into  and  account  beings  to  are  the  i  s u b j e c t s i n q u e s t i o n . T h i s i s an i s s u e w h i c h w i l l be r e t u r n e d a later 1.3.4  in  chapter.  A n a l y t i c a l concerns  Methodological In  to  inadequacies of  a coherent c r i t i q u e  studies  pointing  bilingualism,  to  the  s t u d i e s used  of the methodological problems w i t h both cognitive  and t h o s e p u r p o r t i n g 89  disadvantages to  arising  show c o g n i t i v e  the from  advantages,  MacNab  (1979)  arrives  at  the  conclusion that  there  is  no  solid  i  evidence  to  support  analysis  of  the  authors  the  data  claims  of  by R e y n o l d s  Lambert  noting  study  with threats  that  many  e r a were ex  to internal  of  (1991)  agrees.  both  post  and e x t e r n a l  Reynolds discusses a v a r i e t y  until  the time o f p u b l i c a t i o n  them,  both  compromised studies  in  A more Both  recent  of  these  (1991)  a  sombre  methodologically off  notes arrow  of  that of  issues  inadequate  and I  even  causality related  all  to  be  to  to  be  design  studies,  inherently  compensate  for body  of  problems  fear  been c r i t i c i z e d  analysis,  research  with  techniques  path  trouble is  analysis,  prone  plagued  the d e f i n i t i o n  of  by  with  prevalence  p r o b l e m s and o t h e r  the  logical difficulties  90  I  e t c . do In  procedural  bilinguality,  and e f f e c t s  Due t o  like  designs.  and t h e d a n g e r s o f s e l e c t i o n a r t i f a c t s manipulations.  as  we a r e notomuch [ s i c ]  sophisticated  not  the  of  associational  w h i c h i n c l u d e s more r e c e n t  factor  shortcomings,  1991, p .  t o 1962 h a s r e p e a t e d l y  today;  this  (Reynolds,  quasi-experimental,  (1979)  regression analysis,  addition,  "replete  tone:  The r e s e a r c h p r i o r  better  and  are  and found t h e v a l i d i t y  analysis  and t h e i n d e p e n d e n t v a r i a b l e s , ends on t h i s  validity"  directional  (1991)  and p o s t - P e a l  designs which  and  some w a y . MacNab  do n o t w a r r a n t  pre-  o f t h e r e s e a r c h d e s i g n s u s e d up  pre-experimental  and R e y n o l d s '  the  facto  148).  drawn,  studies.  f a u l t r e s e a r c h e r s on t h e i n a d e q u a c y o f t h e r e s e a r c h d e s i g n s  employed,  of  these  occurring of  design  have d e s c r i b e d , t h e  c e n t r a l q u e s t i o n we s h o u l d be a s k i n g o u r s e l v e s i s n o t the t h e s i s that b i l i n g u a l i t y true  o r whether  relationship  affects  the reverse  at  all....  c o g n i t i v e performance  i s true,  we f i n d  b e t t e r when d e p e n d e n t v a r i a b l e s  whether  but whether  the  situation  a r e examined,  there is  (p.  is  is a  n o t much  159)  Commentary Given  this  indictment  of  H y p o t h e s i s was f o u n d e d ,  the  it  studies. on  consequences of  the v a l i d i t y  and  of  questioned,  this  bilingualism,  which  a n d , though c r i t i c a l  both  of  existence  suggests, of  argumentation using  a  such  Cummins  t h e above  there  is  accepted  of the relationship  Diaz  to  the  for  his that,  investigated  degree of  and came o u t i n a g r e e m e n t  If,  question  nevertheless,  (1985)  between  have  reported,  rationale  s h o u l d be n o t e d ,  design,  ability  they presented.  reason  the  data  authors  o f some o f t h e r e s u l t s  relationship,  group"  and c o g n i t i v e a b i l i t y is,  a  c o l l a p s e s . It  "within  directionality  however,  early  research  o f a r e l a t i o n s h i p between c o g n i t i v e  bilingualism,  Reynolds  reliable  of the b i l i n g u a l  s o u g h t m e r e l y t o make s e n s e o u t o f t h e p a t t e r n as  Threshold  hypothesis has  into consideration the least  implicitly level  that  the  r e s e a r c h , e s p e c i a l l y s i n c e i t was i n  In a c c e p t i n g the v a l i d i t y  the cognitive  upon w h i c h  would appear  emerged f r o m a p o o l o f t a i n t e d part delineated taking  research  the  bilingualism  w i t h Cummins:  that  h i s r e s u l t s s u p p o r t e d Cummins' a s s u m p t i o n t h a t b i l i n g u a l i s m  causal  in  corroborated  its the  effect  on  results  cognitive obtained  91  i  by  ability. Diaz  Hakuta using  a  is  (1987) similar  longitudinal  design to assess c a u s a l i t y .  w i t h Cummins w i t h r e s p e c t t o b o t h t h e between t h e s e two v a r i a b l e s , It  will  authors their  argued  are  of  can  second  particular  changes  in  in  defining  results  vision the  be  a  later  better  language  systems  chapter,  information  in  the  out,  experiments therefore,  even have  the  very  that  more  inbuilt  question of  Also,  to  nature  by t h e  of  the  view  In  in  of any  immersion  (1991,  designs  validity.  that  connectionist  involved  as R e y n o l d s  sophisticated  hazards the  about  these  and  a clearer  may be  arrow.  both  ways, a  agree  relationship  that  through  p r o c e s s i n g brought  the  a  specific  which g i v e s  brain  second language l e a r n i n g s e t t i n g . points  however,  understood  learning  in  existence of  then,  and t h e d i r e c t i o n o f t h e c a u s a l  cognition  be  These a u t h o r s ,  of  p.  152) these  chapter  relationship  3,  between  l e v e l o f b i l i n g u a l i s m and c o g n i t i v e f u n c t i o n i n g w i l l be p r o b e d more deeply to c l a r i f y bilingual  j u s t how c o g n i t i o n i s b e i n g c o n c e p t u a l i z e d by  research  community.  92  the  Summary o f  1.4  Research with respect to the  Chapter  cognitive  has y i e l d e d v e r y c o n f l i c t i n g r e s u l t s . that prevailing  political  research  was  itself.  In  reported  a negative  consequences.  carried political  correlation  The  Peal  and  the  of  countries  outcome  Lambert  the  in  and  1962  the  research  most  bilingualism study  i n which  of  assimilation,  between  bilingualism  h a s b e e n p r o p o s e d by some  i n the  coloured  climates  consequences of It  attitudes  out  One  studies cognitive  in  which  a  i  - positive correlation  between  b i l i n g u a l i s m and c o g n i t i v e a b i l i t y  was  i  f o u n d marked t h e b e g i n n i n g o f a new e r a d u r i n g w h i c h , positive  correlations  were  being  found.  Proponents  o p p o s i n g p o s i t i o n s were i n c o n s t a n t c o n f l i c t were made by b o t h s i d e s .  Eventually,  as a l s o b e i n g i n f l u e n t i a l  increasingly, of  and e x t r e m e  the  two  statements  s o c i a l f a c t o r s were r e c o g n i z e d  in determining  cognitive  and  linguistic  outcomes.  Cummins  attempted  to  make  sense  out  of  the  conflicting  p r o p o s i n g i n t h e T h r e s h o l d H y p o t h e s i s t h a t t h e r e may be a level  of  bilingual  ability  order to avoid negative  cognitive  c o n s e q u e n c e s , and a n o t h e r  hypothesis, which  would Cummins  postulates  begin later  that  to  is  the a  languages,  93  i  effects  manifest  added  there  p r o f i c i e n c y upon w h i c h a l l  cognitive  first  in  higher  associated with  themselves.  Interdependence  common  by  threshold  t h a t must be a t t a i n e d by a l e a r n e r  t h r e s h o l d beyond which p o s i t i v e bilingualism  data  underlying  To  this  Hypothesis linguistic  o r second can draw,  and  that because of t h i s , learning a second language need not detract from l i n g u i s t i c a b i l i t y i n the f i r s t language. I t was determined, that, due to a chronic lack of d e f i n i t i o n of terms, the Threshold Hypothesis i s more appropriately c l a s s i f i e d as an h e u r i s t i c than as a t e s t hypothesis.  The Threshold Hypothesis has been a source of controversy since i t s introduction. C r i t i c i s m s of i t have been launched on conceptual, philosophical, and a n a l y t i c a l grounds, and a c r i t i c a l assessment of these critiques was undertaken i n t h i s chapter. Conceptual concerns can  be gathered  under  two main  headings:  the d i f f i c u l t y i n  i s o l a t i n g a psycholinguistic factor of language p r o f i c i e n c y from sociolinguistic constructs. termed  concerns, and problems  Of major  "cognitive  involving d e f i n i t i o n of  import among the l a t t e r are what has been  issues."  Several  authors  have  been  highly  c r i t i c a l of Cummins' conceptualization of cognition, and, because of  this,  an i n depth  examination  of Cummins'  own  statements  r e l a t i n g to cognition and cognitive issues was undertaken. I t was discovered that Cummins views cognition as c o n s i s t i n g of a core of "basic"  cognitive  abilities  that  are d i s t i n c t  from  cognitive  a b i l i t i e s accrued through learning i n the various subject areas, but are capable of being affected by such learning. E s s e n t i a l l y a proponent cognition,  of Vygotsky's Cummins  sees  theoretical position language  influence on cognitive a b i l i t y , having a unique capacity  as a  on  language and  p a r t i c u l a r l y powerful  and second language learning as  to a f f e c t cognitive 94  development  as a  result of  of  its  feedback f o r the  thereof,  of  competence, to  being able t o generate  be  the  learner.  different  C r i t i c i s m s of the d e f i n i t i o n s ,  concepts  and d e g r e e o f  a qualitatively  linguistic  thresholds,  or  kind lack  linguistic  b i l i n g u a l i s m w e r e a l s o p r o b e d and f o u n d  justified.  i Philosophical Hypothesis  concerns c l u s t e r e d around c l a i m s t h a t the  is  a  deficit  hypothesis  which  casts  Threshold  second  language  i  learners at the negative choice  l o w e r end o f t h e  light, of  degree of  and c o m p l a i n t s  seminal  data  for  that the  bilingualism scale in  there  is  hypothesis  s c i e n t i f i c research t r a d i t i o n ! over n a t u r a l i s t i c the  results  particularly  Lastly,  of  criticized.  the  analytical  methodological  consequences of  result,  and c o g n i t i v e  and  of  the  employed  in  of  bias  which  into  the  ability  has been c a l l e d i n t o  95  crafted  all  between  the of was  charges.  addressed  and r e c e n t  i n e v e n t h e most c a r e f u l l y  data  both these  upon  research  there i s a r e l a t i o n s h i p at  The u s e  averaged  studies  Cummins*  favours  inquiry.  critics  Past  in  which  b i l i n g u a l i s m h i g h l i g h t e d problems of  validity whether  concerns  Threshold Hypothesis.  methodologies  external  tests  S u p p o r t was f o u n d f o r  inadequacies  constructed the the  standardized  a  a  the  Cummins  reviews  of  cognitive  internal  and  d e s i g n s . As a bilingualism  q u e s t i o n by R e y n o l d s .  !  C h a p t e r 2. A CRITIQUE OF CONNECTIONISM  Historical  2.1  Perspective  U n d e r s t a n d i n g t h e m i n d may n o t b e a s i n t r i c a t e hoped o r o u r i n t e l l e c t  as our vanity  feared. R o d o l f o L l i n a s , 1986  The  study  of  the nature  of  conscious  intelligence  p r e o c c u p i e d humankind, and o p i n i o n s o n t h i s contentious.  A s f a r back a s t h e f i f t h  has long  t o p i c have always  and f o u r t h  centuries  Greek p h i l o s o p h e r s d e b a t e d t h e i s s u e s a n d t o o k t h e i r  been B.C.,  stands:  Plato  p o s t u l a t e d t h a t t h e w o r l d c o u l d be d i v i d e d i n t o  two, t h e world of  sensibilia  of  (the found  (the p h y s i c a l world)  non-physical world), only  in  and t h e world  and t h a t Knowledge o f R e a l i t y  the non-physical  world,  i  operations  of  on t h e o t h e r  fundamental  different that  particles  patterns  s o u l which  hand,  particles,  their  remarkable  their  organization.  of  non-physical;  which  highly  linked  physical  together  s u b s t a n c e s , and  complex c o m b i n a t i o n s were  in  fundamentally  of the  material,  being a product of the complexity of  T h u s D e m o c r i t u s e x p r e s s e d what h a s come t o b e  known a s t h e materialist a dualist  atoms  human m i n d s  capabilities  was i t s e l f  the various  s i n c e humans were m e r e l y  fundamental  sphere  c l a i m e d t h a t t h e w o r l d was made up  called  t o form  the proper  was t o b e  ;  f o r the rational  Democritus,  intelligibilia  perspective,  view o f t h e mind, w h i l e  Plato  adhered t o  a n d , though volumes upon volumes o f t e x t s 96  have  been  written  since  their  d a y , contemporary  upheavals  in  i philosophical thinking  still  The p r o b l e m o f t h e n a t u r e been  termed  which,  follow  of conscious i n t e l l i g e n c e  t h e ontological  according  to  r o u g h l y t h e same f a u l t  problem  Paul  o r t h e mind h a s  o r t h e "mind-body"  Churchland,  lines.  attempts  to  problem,  deal  with  questions of the type:  What  i s the real  nature  w h a t medium d o t h e y  o f mental  take p l a c e ,  stat.es  a n d how a r e t h e y  ' i  the  physical  world?  disintegration forever  and processes?  In  related  to  '  Will  my  o f my p h y s i c a l  consciousness body?  a s my b r a i n c e a s e s t o f u n c t i o n ?  Or w i l l  survive it  the  disappear  Is i t possible that a  p u r e l y p h y s i c a l s y s t e m s u c h a s a computer c o u l d b e c o n s t r u c t e d so  as t o enjoy  real  conscious intelligence?  come f r o m ? What a r e t h e y ?  Ruminations dualist to  on t h e s e  and m a t e r i a l i s t  splintering  example,  questions 1  (Churchland,  have  into  1984, p . 7 ) .  l e d not only  these  two c a m p s .  "substance dualism",  mind  t o c o n s i s t o f a fundamentally  body  (the opinion  dualism",  do minds  to the basic  d i v i s i o n s i n p h i l o s o p h i c a l thinking, but  of opinions within  has s p l i t  Where  of Plato  which c o n s i d e r s the  different  and l a t e r  Dualism, f o r  substance than the  Descartes),  and "property  i n w h i c h , t h o u g h t h e s u b s t a n c e o f t h e mind i s c o n c e d e d t o  Sometimes r e f e r r e d t o a s " m o n i s t , " sometimes r e f e r r e d t o a s "monism." 1  97  as m a t e r i a l i s m  is  be  the  brain,  the  mind  itself  is  thought  p h y s i c a l p r o p e r t i e s p o s s e s s e d by no o t h e r as  into  (see  several different  C h u r c h l a n d , 1984,  number  of  mental  state  statement  for can  chap.  about  2).  of  rephrased  the  that  without  behaviour that  has a l s o  any loss  t o as the hand,  "identity  postulates  theory" that  or the  mental  states  are  well  spawned a  "Philosophical  of  meaning  would r e s u l t  "identity  as  statement  observable circumstance. "Reductive materialism",  non-  two s u b d i v i s i o n s  thinking.  claims  special  physical object,  Materialism  lines  example, be  have  flavours within these  different  behaviourism",  to  in  a  about  a  into  a  particular  commonly  referred  p r o b l e m " , on t h e identical  to  other  physical  s t a t e s o f t h e b r a i n o r c e n t r a l n e r v o u s s y s t e m and f o r e s e e s t h a t , man s 1  knowledge  of  the  t h e o r i e s about mental brain  function  (Newtonian  in  the  brain  grows,  everyday  much  was  same  way  .succeeded  Einstein's  are  behaviourism  mechanics theory  defined  in  terms  of  waned,  of  "the  states  of  by  classical  s u p p l a n t e d by " f u n c t i o n a l i s m " , t h e c e n t r a l p r e m i s e o f w h i c h i s mental  popularity  as  was  that  the  the  about  it  thesis  As  of  f u n c t i o n i n g w i l l be r e d u c e d t o t h e o r i e s  mechanics)  relativity.  workings  as  their  abstract  c a u s a l r o l e s w i t h i n the wider  i n f o r m a t i o n - p r o c e s s i n g system" (P.  S.  Churchland,  that  is  considered  1986, to  have  input,  to  to  battered  a  other  materialism" precursor,  the  p.  351),  "abstract  internal and  which  causal  states,  bruised  identity  a neat  a  the  given  relations  and t o  side-stepped  demand f o r  is,  mental to  environmental  output"  (ibid.).  theory  was that  The  heir  "eliminative tripped  its  o n e - t o - o n e match-up between  what  98  pitfall  state  has been c o i n e d " f o l k of  the  world,  critics  theoretical  neuroscience,  by  agreeing  t h a t no s u c h m a t c h - u p w o u l d be f o r t h c o m i n g .  put  forward  not  that  variety the  and  p s y c h o l o g y " , o u r common s e n s e u n d e r s t a n d i n g  by a d v o c a t e s o f  of  of  detractors  quite  required  p. 43).  of  different  functional  Successful  eliminative the  materialism,  identity  theory,  p h y s i c a l systems . . .  organization"  reduction  The  (P.  M.  between  with  rationale  however,  that  could  a  "great  instantiate  Churchland,  the  is  1984,  neuroscientific  u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f t h e m i n d / b r a i n and f o l k p s y c h o l o g y w i l l n o t o c c u r , according  to  inherent  in  eliminative our  folk  i n c l u d i n g our mental  materialists,  psychological  because  the  understanding  states are r a d i c a l l y  of  misguided.  concepts the  So t h e  world debate  i  h a s r a g e d and s t i l l d a t e on t h e  At  first  rages on.  lines  of  glance,  it  (See S e a r l e ,  linked.  is  hard  to  i  territories The semantical  common-sense  vocabulary  In  essence i t  working r e l a t i o n s h i p have  a  clear  idea  of  there  it  is  up-  s o much  the  becomes e v i d e n t  that  issues surrounding  it  •  c o v e r e d by s e m a n t i c s ,  methodology.  meaning.  a recent  q u e s t i o n o f how mind and body  On c l o s e r i n s p e c t i o n , h o w e v e r ,  onto  why  understand  the o n t o l o g i c a l problem i s not d i s c r e t e : overlap  for  argumentation.)  d i s s e n s i o n among p h i l o s o p h e r s on t h i s are  1992,  epistemology,  and  p r o b l e m s p e a k s t o q u e r i e s a s t o how o u r of  psychological  insists that between how i t  if  functioning  we a r e t o  t h e mind and t h e is  that  the  gets  attempt to  b o d y , we must  mind forms  the  its  find  a  first  concepts  i  linked  to  the  words  in  question. 99  In  other  terms,  the  semantical  p r o b l e m a s k s how i t  i s t h a t w o r d s come t o b e m e a n i n g f u l ,  meaning becomes w o r d f u l . hand, d i r e c t s  T h e epistemological  i t s attention  problem,  on t h e other  t o t h e q u e s t i o n o f how human b e i n g s c a n  a c q u i r e knowledge o f t h e i n n e r workings o f c o n s c i o u s , minds,  their  problem  own and t h o s e o f o t h e r s .  deals  with  concerns about  Thus, the f i r s t  intelligent part of this How i s  self-consciousness:  t h a t a p e r s o n comes t o have " a n i m m e d i a t e  and p r i v i l e g e d  of  beliefs,  [ h i s o r h e r ] own s e n s a t i o n s , e m o t i o n s ,  forth?  How i s t h i s  knowledge?"  p o s s i b l e ? And j u s t  (an a l i e n  being,  a computer,  i s or i s not a conscious being,  feelings:  and so is  something  o r even  that  possessing  solution  other  a comatose  thoughts and  What a r e t h e s t a n d a r d s we u s e o r s h o u l d u s e ?  j u d g e ? T h i s i s t h e p r o b l e m o f other the  desires,  ( P . M. C h u r c h l a n d , 1 9 8 4 , p . 6 7 ) . T h e s e c o n d p a r t o f t h e  ourselves  human)  it  knowledge  how t r u s t w o r t h y  e p i s t e m o l o g i c a l p r o b l e m e x a m i n e s how we know t h a t than  a n d how  How d o we  C r u c i a l l y important  minds.  o f a l l o f t h e above problems  i s the  to  methodological  p r o b l e m w h i c h a d d r e s s e s t h e i s s u e o f what a r e t h e b e s t  intellectual  •I  methods t o employ i n a s c i e n c e o f m i n d , a t o p i c upon w h i c h t h e r e little  agreement,  though a l l p a r t i e s  pursuing investigations have  varied  existence whose  from  s c i e n c e cannot since  "the  constructed  on t h e n e c e s s i t y o f  i n t o how t h e mind w o r k s . A p p r o a c h e s t o d a t e  idealism,  i n which  i s c o n s i d e r e d t o be mind,  advocates  do agree  are of the opinion  t h e fundamental  not matter, that  to  stuff  world-of-our-experience (P.  M.  is  t h e methods  in  Churchland, 100  large 1984,  of  phenomenology that  lead t o a true understanding of the nature  world"  is  guide  o f mind  measure p.85),  a to  methodological  which attempts t o r e c o n s t r u c t a s c i e n c e  behaviourism  of psychology according t o the t r a d i t i o n s hypothetico-deductive  methods  of the highly successful  of the physical  sciences  such as  i  c h e m i s t r y and p h y s i c s , which  unites  artificial  intelligence,  to  states  form  of cognitive  t h e mind  perspective  ..  nervous  which  system,  to gain  investigate  access  and t h a t ,  creatures  are simply a c t i v i t i e s o f  consequently,  t o the nature  and i n t e r a c t i o n s , c o n t r o l over  then,  there  o p i n i o n on t h e n a t u r e  to  whose  materialism  the best  of cognitive  manner  activity  t h e f u n c t i o n i n g o f t h e nervous system i t s e l f ,  well as t h e i r Evidently,  and f i n a l l y  •  to say, t o study the behaviour o f i t s m i c r o s c o p i c connections  which  i s the so-called  approach),  b a s i c premise i s t h a t c o g n i t i v e a c t i v i t i e s the  (this  o f methodological j  p s y c h o l o g y and  the occurrence of  in intelligent  processing o r computational  "bottom-up"  approach  cognitive/computational  both o f which p o s t u l a t e  internal  collectively  information the  :  t h e r e s e a r c h programmes  information-bearing interact  on t o t h e  and t h e i r  2  i s to that i s  elements,  development  over  in  their  time as  behaviour.  i s good r e a s o n  f o r the lack  of the relationship  between  of concerted  t h e mind and t h e  With t o d a y ' s t e c h n o l o g i c a l e x p e r t i s e , t h e degree o f " m i c r o " i n v e s t i g a t i o n t h a t c a n be a t t a i n e d i s a s t o n i s h i n g . T e c h n i q u e s h a v e been d e v e l o p e d which have e l u c i d a t e d t h e f u n c t i o n i n g o f s i n g l e macro-molecules such as i o n channels, as w e l l as ions themselves w i t h i n t h e c e l l s , a l l o f w h i c h h a s added a n i n c r e d i b l e r i c h n e s s a n d depth t o e a r l i e r d i s c o v e r i e s o f nervous system f u n c t i o n u s i n g l e s s p o w e r f u l i n v e s t i g a t o r y t o o l s . Hence, i t c o u l d be s a i d t h a t w i t h i n the designation o f "microscopic" as a l e v e l o f i n v e s t i g a t i o n , t h e r e i s now a m u l t i p l i c i t y o f l e v e l s o f i n v e s t i g a t i o n . I n o t h e r w o r d s , one p e r s o n ' s m i c r o i s a n o t h e r p e r s o n ' s m a c r o . 2  101  body!  I n c l u s i o n o f these a s s o c i a t e d problems i n t o t h e sphere o f t h e  ontological  problem  brings  complexity of the issues.  about  However, •  a  just ;  quantum  increase  methodological  as t h e o n t o l o g i c a l problem  I epistemological, of  these  problems a r e n o t c a t e g o r i c a l l y d i s c r e t e . T h i s i s p a r t i c u l a r l y  clear  in  the  problems,  the  i  cannot be c l e a n l y s e p a r a t e d from t h e - s e m a n t i c a l , or  in  descriptions  advocated:  of  the divisions within  the  various  I s i t n o t more p r o p e r ,  each  methodological  f o r example,  approaches  t o c o n s i d e r some o f  today's a r t i f i c i a l  i n t e l l i g e n c e models i n w h i c h a g r e a t d e a l o f t h e  structural  i s based on t h e f i n e - g r a i n e d  i  .  detail  ,•?!!•'!!•,  brain  :  I, |  .  itself  I  I  structure  of the  ,  ,  t o b e a s much p r o d u c t s o f m e t h o d o l o g i c a l  materialism  as o f t h e i n f o r m a t i o n p r o c e s s i n g approach? The  arbitrariness  of  many  of  the  lines  drawn  between  m e t h o d o l o g i c a l a p p r o a c h e s o u t l i n e d g a v e b i r t h t o a more approach, 1980s,  w h i c h came i n t o called  2). Clark  3  (1989)  attempt  models  says that  t o provide  of  biologically, brain.  mind.  also  synthetic  1970s a n d e a r l y  entitled  "parallel  ( s e e R u m e l h a r t & M c C l e l l a n d , 1 9 8 6 , V o l . I,  f\ an  but  connectionism,  distributed processing" chap.  prominence i n t h e l a t e  the  •  connectionism i s  -  slightly  Such  are at least  1  more  models, inspired  Moreover, they a r e t a i l o r e d  biologically  though  hardly  realistic accurate  by t h e s t r u c t u r e . . . to evolutionarily  of the basic  However, i n r e c e n t t i m e s i t h e s e i t e r m s h a v e come t o r e p r e s e n t different sub-divisions within the d i s c i p l i n e . This i s discussed at the end o f t h i s s e c t i o n . 3  !  102  problem-solving needs, l i k e [and a l t h o u g h ] cognition  on  s t r a t e g i e s may w e l l neoclassical  some  occasions  into  the  instantiated  way  thought,  least  a  in  (p.  actual  processing  nature  may  models  provide  for  certain  83).  of  models,  connectionism  disciplines,  reaches  neuroscience,  into  at  artificial  and c o g n i t i v e p s y c h o l o g y , and e x i s t s a t t h e  of  (and  three  offer  e s s e n t i a l t o what we c o n s i d e r  intelligence, all  of  models o f mind d e v e l o p e d b y c o n n e c t i o n i s m a r e  computer  triad  understanding  connectionist  p r o p e r t i e s t h a t seem t o be q u i t e  Since the t h e o r e t i c a l  our  completion....  demand t h e u s e o f h i g h e r l e v e l , s y m b o l i c ,  descriptions...'.  intelligent  pattern  [b]oth our deeper e x p l a n a t o r y  and  insights  perceptual  interface  beyond). j  The r e l a t i o n s h i p s w i t h i n t h i s t r i a d  c a n be d e s c r i b e d i n  terms  psychology  as  follows:  understanding  of  cognitive  the  behavioural  units  of  the  integrate  brain,  the  when  given  information  and  deepens  phenomena t o  c o m p u t a t i o n a l n e u r o s c i e n c e s t u d i e s how t h e a  simple  be  our  explained;  neurons, the  sensory  compute  input  an  basic  pattern,  output  which  i initiates  specific  information  behaviour;  obtained  from  artificial  neuroscientific  " b i o l o g i c a l l y v a l i d " models o f b r a i n system) (and  to  other  see i f  behavioural  animals)  can  intelligence  be 103  studies  systems  tendencies  to  build  the  visual  observed i n  humans  reproduced.  (e.g.  uses  When  they  are  reproduced s u c c e s s f u l l y ,  it  c a n be c o n c l u d e d t h a t  must mimic t o some d e g r e e t h e c o n n e c t i v i t y i n the of  brain  that  itself  system has been g a i n e d .  of  research i n the  the  b i o l o g i c a l processes, then,  mind  o f t h a t same s y s t e m  as  the  in press-b) .  sciences, product  places connectionism very i  materialist  (Hawson,  4  conceptualization  model  and hence knowledge o f t h e modus operandum  T h i s d e p e n d e n c y on e m p i r i c a l the  the  philosophical  camp,  as w e l l  of  as  elemental  firmly  in  the  ;  echoing  distinctly  the  views  of  subject  to  Democritus.  The  premises  critical  of  review,  connectionism  have,!  of  n o t o n l y from d u a l i s t s ,  course,  been  b u t a l s o from  materialists  o f t h e n o n - c o n n e c t i o n i s t p e r s u a s i o n , a s w e l l a s b y some who, persuaded of the value of connectionism, f e e l explanatory Smolensky,  power 1988;  connectionist critics  may  Clark,  thinking  consider that  t h a t mental  have  states  1989.) is  it  will  been  is  that  t h a t c l a i m s as t o  overblown.  (For  One f a m i l i a r it  is  unlikely,  be r e d u c i b l e ! t o  while  general  too  example,  brain  see  criticism  "reductionist":  and f o r  its  many  some p r e p o s t e r o u s , states  as  knowledge  The d e g r e e o f m i m i c r y t h a t i s a c h i e v e d between c o n n e c t i o n i s t m o d e l s and a c t u a l b r a i n s y s t e m s , however, i s an i s s u e t h a t s t i r s up considerable debate. It i s c o n t e n d e d by e x p e r i m e n t e r s t h a t the macroscopic behaviour of a s y s t e m may be r e p r o d u c e d through judicious adjustments to model parameters (commonly called "tweaking") without mimicking to any significant degree the u n d e r l y i n g p r o c e s s e s i n t h e b r a i n . C h u r c h l a n d and S e j n o w s k i ( 1 9 9 2 , p p . 1 3 0 - 1 3 7 ) , on t h e o t h e r h a n d , a r g u e t h a t a m o d e l n e t t h a t i s h i g h l y c o n s t r a i n e d by b i o l o g i c a l d a t a c a n a c h i e v e a h i g h d e g r e e o f o v e r l a p w i t h r e a l n e u r a l n e t s i n terms of "parameter s p a c e " . T h i s p r o b l e m w i l l b e d i s c u s s e d i n more d e t a i l l a t e r i n t h i s c h a p t e r . 4  (  •••  104  of  of brain  functioning  Churchland  (1986,  and " r e d u c t i o n i s t " are  often  increases.  p.278),  I t !has been p o i n t e d o u t b y P a t r i c i a  however,  t h e terms  a r e n o t used c o n s i s t e n t l y  employed a s e p i t h e t s  reductionist,  that  however,  is  "reductionism"  i n t h e l i t e r a t u r e , and  o f abuse o r i n s u l t .  riot  necessarily  To be l a b e l l e d  a negative  C h u r c h l a n d ' s o p i n i o n , and s o a s t o c o n s t r u c t a n a c c u r a t e the the  sense i n which connectionism i s r e d u c t i o n i s t , subject  of intertheoretic  Neurophilosophy  (Churchland,  expressed s u c c i n c t l y  In is  reduction  1986,  simply,  and foremost  one t h e o r y ,  relation  a  that  t h e reduced  . . . t o another  i s relevant  theory  o f view i s  T , R  reduction  theories.  stands i n a  Most  certain  T . Statements  that  B  phenomenon P a r e d e r i v a t i v e B  upon t h e more b a s i c c l a i m t h a t t h e theory r e d u c e s t o t h e theory  here,  between  more b a s i c t h e o r y  R  first  treated  i n her text  7 ) . , Her p o i n t  relation  a phenomenon P r e d u c e s t o a n o t h e r  the  framing o f  she has  in detail  in  below:  t h e sense o f " r e d u c t i o n " first  chap.  thing  that  characterizes  that characterizes  t h e second,  (p.278) •i Thus s t a t e m e n t s to  another  c l a i m i n g t h a t a c e r t a i n phenomenon h a s b e e n r e d u c e d  phenomenon  are i n fact  underlying  the first  underlying  t h e s e c o n d phenomenon:  For  example,  phenomenon  the claim  statements  h a s been  that  105  light  1  that  reduced  the  theory  t o t h e theory  h a s been  reduced  to  electromagnetic  r a d i a t i o n means  has  been reduced t o  and  (b)  that i t  that  that  of  to  in this  places  theory  is  reduced  light  on  e l u c i d a t i o n of the  the  requirement to  take  "correct" ,  least  far  as  at  as  one be e v e n p a r t l y  with  in  radiation such a  issues i s the  that,  for  both  place, current  a  way  typically creating  wrongmindedness,  involve  some  an a n a l o g u e o f  the  complete e l i m i n a t i o n  of  the  must  the In  be  should  logic,  an  completely  reductions  to  original.  successful  goes:  due t o f a l s e  Indeed,  revision  emphasis  theories  knowledge  e r r o n e o u s , whether  s u c c e s s f u l r e d u c t i o n c a n n o t be e x p e c t e d . , j  thereby  optics  electromagnetic  incomplete information base, or other such inadequacies,  theories  of  electromagnetic  identify  reduction  either  of  optics  intertheoretic 5  that the  (p.279)  important  it  theory  theory  i s appropriate  radiation,  What i s  the  the  (a)  reduced cases of  reduced theory  between theory extreme may be  mandated.  How much o f , analogue  o r how c l o s e l y , t h e o l d t h e o r y  varies  from  case  :  to  c a s e and  much c o r r e c t i o n t h e o l d t h e o r y r e q u i r e s . optics  could  be  i  preserved, .i  thermodynamics,  and a l m o s t  .  only .  nothing  is  '  i s mirrored in  the  a  how  function  of  Most o f t h e t h e o r y some  of  classical  •  of  the  c a l o r i c theory  I t i s r e c o g n i z e d t h a t t h e c o r r e c t n e s s o f any t h e o r y i s n e v e r a b s o l u t e as i t i s a f u n c t i o n of the data chosen t o form the b a s i s o f t h e t h e o r y , and t h i s may be d e f i c i e n t i n many w a y s , o u t - o f - d a t e , i l l - c h o s e n , i n s u f f i c i e n t , i m p r e c i s e and so o n . 5  106  of  of  h e a t and t e m p e r a t u r e ,  Since  one  of  the  major  benefits  explanatory u n i f i c a t i o n , responding  to  criticisms  is  must  be  which  the  able  have  however,  critics  to  the  of  suchlike  explain from  l e v e l s of  ultimate  goal  under  different  nor s h o u l d b e , will  not  satisfactory inquiry  neurology,  of  linguists, their  many o f  of mental mental  substantial  forthcoming,  construct  investigation. for  memory  such a of  arises  example,  if  goal case, and  reducing  theories  the  fields  of  out  in  the  fields  other,  theory  c o - e v o l u t i o n of  at  the  of  the  theories  has  t r a n s m i s s i o n and  evidence of mutual  and p s y c h o l o g y (see P.  etc.)  If,  states  on t h e  a grand u n i f y i n g  Happily,  carried  theorists  states  correction,  i n f o r m and i n i t i a t e m o d i f i c a t i o n i n t h e being to  states  and t h e  In  constraint  situation  the  perspectives.  be a t t a i n e d .  influencing  of  S . C h u r c h l a n d , 1986,  s u c h c o - e v o l u t i o n t o d e v e l o p , however, the p a r t  in  c o - e v o l v e by a l l o w i n g t h e d i s c o v e r i e s  m o l e c u l a r g e n e t i c s , and t h e r e i s on  in  theoretical  an u n a c c e p t a b l e  occurred i n ,  research  s o r t are c r u c i a l  cross-theoretical identification  more  i n one a r e a t o  already  of  constitutes  different  is  the. c o n c e p t u a l i z a t i o n s o f  unification  A far  reduction  connectionism. Implicit  t h e t h e o r y t o be r e d u c e d r e q u i r e s  requirement  topic  intertheoretic  a s s u m p t i o n t h a t any new t h e o r y  emerged  explanatory  theory.  of  c o n s i d e r a t i o n s of t h i s  no smooth r e d u c t i o n w i l l , of  (p.283)  in  neurobiology, p.  285).  For  t h e r e must be an o p e n n e s s on  (as w e l l a s e x p e r i m e n t a l i s t s ,  philosophers,  to the p o s s i b i l i t y of e r r o r w i t h i n the premises of  espoused theory,  hence,  it  i s argued by c o n n e c t i o n i s t s , !  i  107  for  researchers  into  the  nature  understanding o f mental  of  m i n d to  insist  that  our  intuitive  s t a t e s and p r o c e s s e s c a n n o t be i n e r r o r  is  ' ! ! ' • ' ' !  to  beg t h e  very  q u e s t i o n b e i n g examined. ;  pp.144-149  for  a d i s c u s s i o n of  i n the t r i a d i c theories  of  (See  also  this  r e l a t i o n s h i p of the  point.)  Furthermore,  c o n n e c t i o n i s m , the main g o a l o f which i s t o (P.  S.  subtitle  for  the  of  text),  is  the  neuroscience,  psychology.  potential  the e l i m i n a t i v e 1988;  P.  artificial  Nevertheless,  M.  remembered,  Churchland, favours  the  p p . ; 125-127)  elimination  of  of  and to  (for  such a the  cognitive  be f o u n d  example  which,  at see  progress i n  often  p h i l o s o p h i c a l camp 1989,  root  arrive  emergence  intelligence,  c o n n e c t i o n i s t s are  materialist  inherent  C h u r c h l a n d , 1986,  u n i f y i n g theory through c o - e v o l u t i o n of t h e o r e t i c a l of  1992,  d i s c i p l i n e s which form the  a " u n i f i e d s c i e n c e of the m i n d / b r a i n "  fields  Searle,  i  it  in  Stich, may  erroneous t h e o r i e s  be  rather  I  't  than t h e i r  reduction.  For these p h i l o s o p h e r s , f o l k psychology,  commonsense c o n c e p t u a l framework P.  M.,  1989,  culturally  p.  2),  i s merely  s p e c i f i c theory  f o r m e n t a l phenomena" a r o u g h and r e a d y ,  (see  stance,  for  example  One o f  the  stance  of  1992)  that  reduction  then,  1992,  most p r o m i n e n t connectionism elimination is  of  subjective,  be u t t e r l y  that connectionists are  Searle,  (Churchland, and  o f m e n t a l p r o c e s s e s , w h i c h may be p r o v e n  by a d v a n c i n g n e u r o s c i e n t i f i c d i s c o v e r y t o on t h i s  "our  chap.j  critics is  John folk  of  often  108  taken  to  It  is task  1). the  Searle.  eliminative He  has  psychology through  i m p l a u s i b l e because  false.  materialist  argued  (Searle,  intertheoretic  [f]olk  psychology  sometimes d r i n k are  hungry;  these are  includes  better  claims  because they are, t h i r s t y  t h a t they  beliefs  such  are  or at  than  least  less  and t h a t t h e s e  indefinitely  entities  go  with  others;  that  people  that they  to  the theory  demonstrate  As  all  existence  sometimes  claims  folk  for  psychological entities,  of  (p.  conscious i n t e l l i g e n c e  i n humans,  Searle  i s also maintaining  line  that consciousness w i l l  states.  In  his  opinion,  however,  not  the  or  folk  accepting  are  argumentation  have  theoretical  falsehood  surface  do  more  above  brain  the  the  beliefs  detailed  of  of  of  some  sometimes  p s y c h o l o g y would be t o remove any j u s t i f i c a t i o n the  some o f  goes, the  the  they  that  And s o -  ;  If  people  because  that  aire o f t e n u n p l e a s a n t .  -on.... it:  and e a t  false;  s o m e t h i n g b e c a u s e t h e y want t o do i t ; pains;  that  h a v e d e s i r e s and b e l i e f s ,  true,  supported  as  6).  phenomena in  of his  be r e d u c i b l e  to  irreducibility  of  i  consciousness consequences"  is (p.  inconsequential, 118),  because i t  pragmatics of our d e f i n i t i o n a l of the of  or  motion,  reductions the  Searle  least  "is a trivial  practices"  " r e d u c t i o n " o f t h e phenomenon o f  molecular  at  argues  surface or s u b j e c t i v e  that  in  no  deep  consequence o f  (p.122).  heat to  "has  the  Taking the kinetic  such  appearances of  the case  energy  intertheoretic the  phenomenon  some  underlying  i  are  explained  as b e i n g c a u s e d by t h e  microstructure.  When t h i s  explanation  109  behaviour i  is  of  accepted as  i  plausible,  [wje  t h e n redefine  of  both  the  heat  ...  i n terms of  subjective  the u n d e r l y i n g causes  experiences  phenomena. And i n t h e r e d e f i n i t i o n  and  other  we e l i m i n a t e  any  surface reference  t o t h e s u b j e c t i v e a p p e a r a n c e s and o t h e r s u r f a c e e f f e c t s underlying causes. kinetic feel  heat  that  t r e a t e d as j u s t  As  Searle  It  explains, of  i s now d e f i n e d i n t e r m s o f  the  the  as  a  subjective  object  is  a p p e a r a n c e c a u s e d by h e a t ,  this  does not  valid  formula  and t h e  when we t o u c h a h o t  i s no l o n g e r p a r t o f  however,  heat  consciousness,  we g e t  a subjective  of heat.  experience  the  e n e r g y o f t h e m o l e c u l a r movements,  of  effect  "Real" heat  of  real  eliminate  phenomenon.  outlined  heat.  above  In  of  s u b j e c t i v e e x p e r i e n c e o f t h e phenomenon f r o m i t s  now  a s an  (p.  the  the  carving "reality"  119).  actual  case  of  off  the  does not  work and c a n n o t work a c c o r d i n g t o S e a r l e f o r t h e s i m p l e r e a s o n t h a t where c o n s c i o u s n e s s  Consciousness  i s concerned the  fails  to  be  reality  reducible,  the  is  not  "appearance":  because  of  some  i  mysterious feature, outside for  the  pattern  of  r e d u c t i o n t h a t we h a v e  pragmatic reasons. P r e t h e o r e t i c a l l y ,  solidity, But  b u t s i m p l y b e c a u s e by d e f i n i t i o n  is  unlike  terms  of  features without  a surface feature solidity,  an  of  underlying  losing  the  cannot  microstructure,  t h e n t r e a t e d a s mere e f f e c t s point 110  of  of  having  falls  chosen to  consciousness,  certain  consciousness  it  use like  p h y s i c a l systems. be and  real the  redefined the  in  surface  consciousness, concept  of  consciousness  i n the  first  Should these standard patterns a major  intellectual  place,  of  revolution,  (p.  123)  r e d u c t i o n change as a r e s u l t however,  of  S e a r l e can envisage  the  p o s s i b i l i t y of a presently inconceivable reduction of  consciousness  coming  in  about.  Finally  and  unexpectedly,  however,  v a r i o u s approaches t o r e p r e s e n t i n g the p r o c e s s i n g of the b r a i n ,  Searle arrives  at  other merits,  show how  system might  at  least  information  by  convert  some c o n n e c t i o n i s t m o d e l s a  meaningful  m e a n i n g f u l o u t p u t w i t h o u t any r u l e s ,  input  principles,  or other  s o r t s o f m e a n i n g f u l phenomena i n b e t w e e n .  to  that  say  existing  perhaps they are a l l all  obviously  traditional principle  The  on  a defense of connectionism:  Among t h e i r a  musing  subject  models"  of  and  important  connectionist  wrong. But i t  false  or  cognitivist  are.  the  (p.  models  that  in  are  the  This i s  the  not  correct  way  violate  a  inferences,  i s t o say t h a t they are  incoherent models  into  that  not the  connection  246)  difference  connectionist  one  which  has  landmark  paper  which  between  models  been  "traditional  highlighted  explored  in  fine  by  cognitivist  Searle  detail  is  an  by  Paul  controversy  (see  Smolensky.  In  a  Smolensky,  1988,  pp. 23-74),  stirred  up  enormous  S m o l e n s k y , who i s h i m s e l f a r e s e a r c h e r 111  i  and a d v o c a t e o f t h e c o n n e c t i o n i s t  approach t o m o d e l l i n g  examined c o n n e c t i o n i s m w i t h a v i e w t o a t t e m p t i n g t o goals  of  and t h e  the  approach,  relations  frameworks  fundamental  presumed t o  link  of cognitive science"  the  formulation  the  PTC a p p r o a c h : t h e  believer  the  of  the  with the  (Smolensky,  connectionist  Proper Treatment  introductory  weighted  passages of  famous  is  other  1988,  p.  of  about  paper  the  testing,  theoretical  2).  He  labels  advocates  C o n n e c t i o n i s m . Though a connectionist  towards t h e p o s i t i v e .  his  it  a p p r o a c h w h i c h he  in connectionism, his b e l i e f s  are not u n c r i t i c a l l y  "articulate  hypotheses  it  cognition,  he  In  lays  fact,  out  an  models in  the  almost  e q u a l number o f p o s i t i v e and n e g a t i v e  assessments of  connectionist  modelling  contradictory  fashion.  in  instance, things,  an  even-handed  Smolensky  (1988,  and  pp.  2-3)  he b e l i e v e s  reports  that,  among  For other  . i  (1)  a.  It  is far  adequate  from c l e a r w h e t h e r  computational  power t o  c o n n e c t i o n i s t models  perform h i g h - l e v e l  have  cognitive  taslCS • • • * i  (1)  c.  It  contribute  while at  (1)  the  g.  is  far  to  the  same t i m e  It  i s very  out t o o f f e r  from  clear!  study of  that  human  connectionist  models  can  competence..,.  believing.  likely  contributions  t h a t c o n n e c t i o n i s t models w i l l t o t h e m o d e l l i n g o f human  I  112  turn  cognitive  performance significant  (1)  i.  It  on h i g h e r  as those offered  i s likely  most s i g n i f i c a n t mind/body  that  "level  tasks  by t r a d i t i o n a l  of connectionism  a t which  In h i s o p i n i o n ,  explain  cognitive  level  of  intended  cognitive  t h a t c o r r e s p o n d t o constituents these  the  paradigms  emanating  level  but at  from  adopted by a  so-called  the  two. as  Defining the  the  symbolic  t o connectionism  the correct which " i s  paradigm  built  up o f  entities  o f t h e symbols used i n t h e s y m b o l i c constituents  could  of individual  be  called  processing  ;  networks"  can be a n a l y z e d  the p r e f e r r e d  l e v e l , as  modelling  j j are the activities  i n connectionist models  at the neural  descriptions  I  units  cognition  be d i s c u s s e d below) , he goes on t o  fine-grained  and they  sub symbols,  of  i s t h a t o f t h e subsymbolic  t o suggest  paradigm;  between  i n t h e PTC a p p r o a c h  p e r s p e c t i v e t o adopt  models  cognition,  cognitive  ( d e t a i l s o f which w i l l  detailed  i  somewhere to  out t h i s  nor at the "symbolic" l e v e l  models  approach  that  on t h e  i  i s neither  •• !  paradigm  offer the  was t o e s t a b l i s h t h e  connectionist ;  this  h a s b e e n p r o p o s e d b y many,  traditional  as  symbolic models.  i n carrying  .  "subsymbolic"  least  c o n n e c t i o n i s t models w i l l  interests  investigation  traditional  are at  problem.  of analysis"  operate.  that  progress of the past several millennia  One o f S m o l e n s k y ' s m a j o r analytical  level  both  (p.'3). the  A s Smolensky p o i n t s o u t , symbolic  and subsymbolic  a t v a r i o u s l e v e l s , b u t he suggests t h a t 113 o f a n a l y s i s f o r models o f t h e s y m b o l i c p a r a d i g m  is  t h e conceptual  Since  subconceptual. constrains  level,  the  "[p]robably  while  that  the  level  formalism  for  of  t h e most s t r i k i n g f e a t u r e  Smolensky goes t o g r e a t  the subsymbolic l e v e l a l t e r s He n o t e s  adopted  (p.  3),  i s the "greatly  and  since  o f t h e c o n n e c t i o n i s t approach  t o t h e symbolic approach" (pp.  lengths t o elaborate  how w o r k i n g a t  formulations o f cognitive  performance.  that:  Since the  analysis  analysis"  i s t h e change i n f o r m a l i s m r e l a t i v e 3-4),  o f t h e subsyiribolic  the birth  of cognitive  dominant t h e o r e t i c a l  taken t h e i r their  structure  content  science,  model.  has provided  language  Formal c o g n i t i v e models  from t h e syntax o f f o r m a l  from t h e semantics o f n a t u r a l  have  languages, and  language.  The mind  h a s been t a k e n t o be a machine f o r f o r m a l symbol m a n i p u l a t i o n , and t h e symbols m a n i p u l a t e d ! have assumed e s s e n t i a l l y  t h e same  i  s e m a n t i c s a s words o f E n g l i s h ,  The  structure  underpinning  of the  language, symbolic  of  according moment  the  system  is  to differential  i n such  behavioural  a system,  output)  is  then,  paradigm.  c o n n e c t i o n i s t m o d e l s , however, state  ( p . 4)  a  is  the  The b a s i c  i s a dynamical numerical  evolution  vector  represented  as  a  value  from i n p u t s r e c e i v e d from o t h e r  114  (p.  (which  for  i n which "the  evolving  equations"  the state  structure  structure  system  vector  s c a t t e r e d o v e r a wide d i s t r i b u t i o n i o f u n i t s , its  basic  6).  in  time  A t any  determines t h e  pattern  of  activity  e a c h o f w h i c h computes  units  b e f o r e p a s s i n g on  information system.  with  Thus,  connectionist language,  respect  the  to  its  meaning • o f  m o d e l c a n n o t be  such  as  a  word,  units  themselves  subconceptual.  In  do  a  in  to  unit's  likened to  as  b e c a u s e many u n i t s a r e a c t i v e the  activity  a  other  units  activity  value  an e l e m e n t  traditional  of  a  have  other words, the  conceptual  a  model:  activity  semantics,  value of  argument above w h i c h c a s t s d o u b t on t h e  the  notion of  but  a u n i t h a s no  back t o  Searle's  existence  of  " u n i v e r s a l grammars" o f v a r i o u s k i n d s , I  intercede  in  natural  cognitive  r e c o g n i z a b l e meaning t o u s , a p o i n t which r e f e r s  which  the  i n t h e r e p r e s e n t a t i o n o f any c o n c e p t ,  not  " m e a n i n g f u l phenomena", o r  in  '  i  c a u s a l l y between  meaningful  input  and  meaningful  Higher l e v e l or "hard" b e h a v i o u r s such as " r u l e  following"  i  output. in  a  language  are  better  described,  emergent p r o p e r t i e s o f an i n h e r e n t l y rules  exist.  In  according to  c o n n e c t i o n i s t subsymbolic models, then,  shift"  subconceptual l e v e l  descriptions  demands  a  As  was  models  mentioned function  above, is  the  realm of  though the  lower  than  the  level  been model  learned  about  designs.  This  brain lack  "neural  115  to  models i n v o l v i n g  the  description  at  which level,  connectionist it  is  still  f a c t t h a t much o f what h a s  p r o c e s s i n g has of  try  mathematics.  symbolic  higher than the neural l e v e l d e s p i t e the  to  "dimensional  s y m b o l i c p a r a d i g m , one w h i c h moves t h e s e m a n t i c s o f t h e and i n t o  as  c o n c e p t u a l - l e v e l behaviour  which i s not necessary i n t r a d i t i o n a l  away f r o m l a n g u a g e ,  view,  " s o f t " s y s t e m i n w h i c h no s u c h  understand the c a u s a l f a c t o r s f o r h i g h , through  this  been  realism"  incorporated has  been  into  another  source of c r i t i c i s m of connectionist models. There i s no doubt, however, that  the functioning  of connectionist  models i s much  i  closer to the neural l e v e l than that of symbolic models, and some connectionist  models  which  are designed  specifically  to t e s t  theories of brain functioning of more fundamental a b i l i t i e s such as visual  functioning  According  come very  close  to being  "neural  models".  to Smolensky, neural models of cognitive behaviour are  not yet f e a s i b l e , not for want of data on the brain, but f o r want of the r i g h t kind of data: Our information about the nervous system tends to describe i t s structure, not i t s dynamic behavior. Subsymbolic systems are dynamical systems with certain kinds of d i f f e r e n t i a l equations governing their dynamics. I f we knew which dynamical variables in the neural system for some cognitive task were the c r i t i c a l ones f o r performing that task, motion"  were  f o r those  and what the "equations of  • j  variables, i  we  could  use  that  information to b u i l d neurally f a i t h f u l cognitive models. But generally what we know are endless  s t a t i c properties of how  the hardware i s arranged, (p. 10) Thus, only a model of the brain which provides a description at the neural  level  Nevertheless,  can  legitimately  connectionist  be  models  called can  a  neural  provide  model.  approximate  descriptions of the functioning of the brain at a higher neural  level,  that  i s , at a subconceptual  116  level,  than  and though  approximate, they  the d e s c r i p t i o n of the microstrucure of c o g n i t i o n  offer  Smolensky  is  more  precise  clarifies  by  the  subsymbolic models of  far  than  relationship  c o g n i t i o n as  whereas  description subsymbolic  of  theory  r e s p e c t s i n which the explain  In  other  why  words,  (p.  the  symbolic  theory  symbolic  phenomena  apparent to  errors.  "lack  of  desirability  be  100%  at  and  a  in  criticisms  the  more the  of  they question not in  no model i s  Speaking of models of  An  subsymbolic theory  realism  in  approximate job  of  situations  and  the  is valid,  process  and  function  the  to  model  by  be  a  117  correct  any  the  respond in  but  that  and  useful  they  the need  model.  comment:  in perspective. very  a  also  in  and m o r e o v e r ,  in general,  In  how  models  noting  good  reduce  level  practicality  models t h a t a r e e x c e s s i v e l y r i c h may mask t h e to reveal.  to  to  (1992) , h o w e v e r ,  1  to  try  connectionist  just  a  i s to  fundamental  o n e - u p m a n s h i p needs t o be p u t  t h e m o d e l s were b u i l t  an  of  important  100% r e a l i s t i c ,  order  brain  and  i  explaining  of  provide  delineate  i  arise,  symbolic  microstructure  symbolic approximation  job of  realistic  Realistic  models  C h u r c h l a n d and S e j n o w s k i  scientific tradition not  to  12).  realism"  d i f f e r e n t manner: the  by  between  macrostructure. is  symbolic models.  describe the  symbolic  the  of  follows:  Subsymbolic models a c c u r a t e l y cognition,  that  that  First,  principles  most e x t r e m e c a s e ,  if  a model i s e x a c t l y  as r e a l i s t i c  construction  and  the  computational  a n d human  a s t h e human b r a i n ,  analysis time  model,  t o the bald rule the better  it  be  and hence  m o d e l l i n g may b e a s t u l t i f y i n g adheres  may  expensive  impractical.  undertaking  that  then the in . . .  i f one s l a v i s h l y  t h e more c o n s t r a i n t s p u t i n a  i s . Every  level  needs models t h a t a r e  s i m p l i f i e d w i t h r e s p e c t t o l e v e l s below i t , b u t m o d e l l i n g c a n proceed very w e l l i n p a r a l l e l , at  t h e same t i m e ,  detail  a t many l e v e l s  of organization  where s e n s i b l e d e c i s i o n s a r e made a b o u t what  to include  a n d what  procedure  f o r deciding  knowledge  o f t h e nervous  to ignore.  what  to  There  include,  i s no d e c i s i o n  though with  p a t i e n c e and  i m a g i n a t i o n a r e a d v a n t a g e o u s . The b e s t d i r e c t i v e  we c o u l d come  up w i t h  i s the woefully  system t o g e t h e r  extensive  vague r u l e  o f thumb:  s i m p l e enough t o r e v e a l what i s i m p o r t a n t , i n c l u d e whatever  i s relevant  make t h e m o d e l  b u t r i c h enough t o  t o t h e measurements n e e d e d , ( p .  137)  A  crucial  insight  into  t h e debate  surrounding  c o g n i t i o n may have been p r o v i d e d b y C l a r k there science  a r e two t y p e s which  structure  of cognitive  "attempts  to give  of the abstract  which causes  "attempts  to give  of the intelligent  (1989) who m a i n t a i n s  science: a formal  descriptive theory  domain o f t h o u g h t s ,  p r o g r a m a s a t o o l o r medium"  (p.153),  an account behaviours  118  the modelling of  and causal  cognitive  o r model o f t h e  u s i n g t h e computer cognitive  of the inner that  that  science  computational  form t h e b a s i s f o r t h e  a s c r i p t i o n of thoughts"  (p.  s u b c o n c e p t u a l models are symbolic  models  distinction futility  more  by  Clark  comparing  behaviour  which  cognitive  science:  are  hardly  that  in  both  have  the  lies  light  i n . the  performances out  of  have  Smolensky  s y m b o l i c models  study  of  paradigm,  cognition. the u n i t y  conceptual  level,  relatively  few  rich variety foresees  the  the  principles  possibility  the  a single  a higher  cognitive  that  systems"  And s o t h e  debate  as t o  how b e s t t o  investigate  the it  of  "we  (Clark,  formal  on  the  goals  the  in they  the  fact  value  that  to the  of  higher  1989,  of  1988, the  but  p.  as  the  at  level,  p.  where  lead 22),  the  to  a  Clark  constructs  of  approximations a  otherwise  means  of  disparate  200).  conscious (to  to  subsymbolic  framework  a s mere  between  offer  be f o u n d n o t  view  not  truth,  r a g e s on and  119  to  i s to  may  unity  nature  the  cognitive  of  believe  (Smolensky,  cognitive level  of  subconceptual  Intelligence],  connectionist  groups of  in  at  of  divisions  spite  nothing  "[a]ccording  rather  [Artificial  highlighting  have  underlying cognition but  of  or  :  cognition  Though  In  do n o t  >  of g l o b a l behaviours"  s y m b o l i c AI to  of  sheds  different  convinced  :  they  i  it  different  entirely  are  generally,  importance  models  w i t h one a n o t h e r .  c o n n e c t i o n i s t models o f b e h a v i o u r , level  of  the  more  while t r a d i t i o n a l  The  s i n c e they  and  causal,  descriptive.  arisen  competition  Clark  Connectionist or,  undoubtedly  are  made  of  154).  intelligence  borrow S e a r l e ' s  and  phrase)  more  or  less  data  on  brain  power  of  indefinitely  In; t h e  6  p r o c e s s i n g has  connectionist  accordingly: of  brain  lesion  to  simulate  increased,  models  of  1  systems  such  frequently  as  into  1990a,  the  1990b);  mechanics  of  response  brain  recovery models  spatial  of  which  as  perceptual Reeke,  touch  the  brain  itself  7  to  consciousness visual  the  study  the  of by  being up  modelling to  of  they  to  gain  (Kosslyn  et  al.,  to  visual  study  the  system  i n t h e model system  devised  in  the  the  What  visual  central  consciousness"  to  brain  how much o f  the  have mimic  of  is  the  being  how  (Edelman  truly  insight  into How  problems  120  • i  is  being  knows. No one brain,  nor  role  of  Of m a j o r c o n c e r n t o c r i t i c s o f , t h i s t y p e o f m o d e l l i n g i s t h e f a c t t h a t t h e y a r e more i n t h e b u s i n e s s o f m i m i c r y t h a n p r e d i c t i o n o f o u t c o m e , a s i s more n o r m a l i n t h e s c i e n t i f i c tradition. 7  &  is  system?  i n the  such  study  this  F o r a r e c e n t u p - d a t e on t h e i s s u e s , p a r t i c u l a r l y t h e s c i e n c e i n the study of c o n s c i o u s n e s s , see Horgan, 1994. 6  and  order  The s h o r t answer i s t h a t nobody r e a l l y  discovered a "seat  working  brain  acquisition  consciousness?  related  evolved  and r o b o t s w i t h s e n s e s  are  built  in  visual  language  may be p r o t e s t e d ,  gained  perception  investigated? has y e t  it  is  the  of and  which  t