Convegno “BiALL – Bilingual Acquisition of Language and Literacy” (Berlin, 22-24 maggio 2019)

The conference BiALL is organized by the Leibniz-Centre General Linguistics in Berlin from 22-24 May, 2019. BiALL was created as an opportunity to discuss recent topics in bilingual language acquisition, heritage language acquisition and literacy.

BiALL is organized as part of the closure of the DFG-funded project DRUSLI, investigating early predictors of bilingual children’s reading and writing competence in primary school. Observing the language development of bilingual children in the transition period from kindergarten to school, we are interested in the association between the acquisition of literacy and various domains of the preschool verbal language such as lexicon and grammar. Attached to the conference will be a satellite workshop on outcomes from DRUSLI (ZAS) and our partner project SEDRiK (LMU Munich). The following competences are going to be in the focus there: (a) the phonological competence (phonological representations measured based on NWRT and on decision tasks between existing words and non-words), phonological awareness and rapid automatized naming, and (b) narrative abilities with morphological, syntactic and semantic components as well as the competence in discourse, macrostructure and microstructure. All these components are considered as being predictors for the later ability of reading, writing and spelling.

Keynote speakers

Johanne Paradis (University of Alberta, Canada) – The bilingual development of migrant children in Canada with a focus on the Syrian refugee community

Bernhard Brehmer (Universität Greifswald, Germany) – Long-term development of reading proficiencies in heritage languages: Evidence from Russian and Polish heritage speakers in Germany

Sharon Unsworth (Radboud University Nijmegen, the Netherlands) – Predicting cross-linguistic influence in bilingual language development: the role of language-level, contextual, and individual-level factors


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