Don’t believe bilingual propaganda

They don’t control for class, marital status of parents and education level, let alone IQ.

The more languages a person speaks in practice, the more scattered their communication, as you’d expect.

 a phenomenon that researchers call the bilingual advantage

not biased at all

For the first half of the twentieth century, researchers actually thought that bilingualism put a child at a  disadvantage, something that hurt her I.Q. and verbal development.

When you account for IQ yes.

But, in recent years, the notion of a bilingual advantage has emerged from research to the contrary, research that has seemed both far-reaching and compelling, much of it coming from the careful work of the psychologist Ellen Bialystok.

No, one person’s opinion doesn’t steamroll decades of IQ data.

For many tasks, including ones that involve working memory, bilingual speakers seem to have an edge.

Do they control for race? If they mostly or only study Ashkenazi Jews, it doesn’t even apply to all Jews.

And when it comes to qualities like sustained attention and switching between tasks effectively, bilinguals often come out ahead. It seems fairly evident then that, given a choice, you should raise your child to speak more than one language. Indeed, papers touting “Creativity and Bilingualism,” “Cognitive Advantages of Bilingual Five-Year-Olds,” “A Bilingual Advantage in Task-Switching,” “Bilingualism Reduces Native-Language Interference During Novel-Word Learning,” and “Good Language-Switchers Are Good Task-Switchers”—and the resulting books with provocative titles such as “The Bilingual Edge” and “Bilingual Is Better”—suggest that raising a bilingual child is, in large part, a recipe for raising a successful child.

What propaganda? Science is always so overwhelmingly one-sided?

From the age of eleven, Angela de Bruin spoke two languages. Born in the nineteen-eighties in Nijmegen, a small town in the Netherlands, de Bruin spoke Dutch at home, and, in school, immersed herself in English. She became fascinated by bilinguals, and read avidly about the cognitive advantages that being fluent in more than one language was supposed to provide.

confirmation bias

In college, she took up linguistics and neuroscience. And, in 2012, de Bruin enrolled in the psychology graduate program at the University of Edinburgh to further pursue the link between bilingualism and cognition.

No motive there.

This reminds me of left hand studies that say they’re smarter.

Being left handed doesn’t make you smarter. They’re different variables.

This is doing the exact same shit. Publication bias.

They won’t publish studies that show no link or an inverse connection to a positive variable. Egocentric scientism. Tut tut.

She came to the program fully expecting to study the extent to which her bilingual brain was adapted to succeed. “I had the impression that there’s a really strong effect of bilingualism on executive function,” de Bruin told me recently.

Experimenter  prejudice.

Normally, to test for an edge in executive function,

actual science yes

you give a version of a task where people have to ignore certain stimuli while selectively focussing on others. …..

When de Bruin looked at the data, though, in three of the four tasks testing inhibitory control, including the Simon task, the advantage wasn’t there. 

Scatter brains, duh. These people fumble for a single word like a child when “fluent”.

Let me guess, she rigged a new test to get the result she wanted?
Why oh why is there a Reproduction Crisis with these tossers walking about?

Monolinguals and bilinguals had performed identically. “We thought, Maybe the existing literature is not a full, reliable picture of this field,”

fuck. you.
The field is The field. Your single subjective opinion is not eminent, fucking narcissist.

she said. So, she decided to test it further.

Of course she fucking did.

Because science means flipping the coin again and again and again until you get the result you want.

Wait – that’s scientism. Allowing your personal faith to render the results null and void.

Systematically, de Bruin combed through conference abstracts from a hundred and sixty-nine conferences, between 1999 and 2012, that had to do with bilingualism and executive control. The rationale was straightforward: conferences are places where people present in-progress research. They report on studies that they are running, initial results, initial thoughts. If there were a systematic bias in the field against reporting negative results—that is, results that show no effects of bilingualism—then there should be many more findings of that sort presented at conferences than actually become published.

Ok. This is interesting.

That’s precisely what de Bruin found.

Not the reverse, poor performance? Did she look? Or just not mention it because she is personally affected?
Multi-linguals shouldn’t be conducting multi-lingual efficacy studies.

For the same reason ice cream companies shouldn’t be studying whether ice cream is healthy.

At conferences, about half the presented results provided either complete or partial support for the bilingual advantage on certain tasks,

keyword OR

and on CERTAIN tasks (which might be neutralized by others)

while half provided partial or complete refutation. 

The null hypotheses have it.

 But the advantage is neither global nor pervasive, as oftenreported.

Almost like you need other factors.

 They had each group take part in four tasks—the Simon task, a task of everyday attention (you hear different tones and must count the number of low ones while filtering out the high ones), the Tower of London (you solve a problem by moving discs around on a series of sticks to match a picture of what the final tower looks like), and a simple task-switching paradigm (you see circles and squares that are either red or blue, and must pay attention to either one color or one shape, depending on the part of the trial).

all of those connect with IQ

In the first three tasks, they found no difference between the groups.

control for class

On the last, they thought they’d finally detected an advantage: on the switch trials—the trials immediately after a change from shape to color or color to shape—the bilinguals, both active and passive, seemed to be quicker. But when the researchers dug deeper, they found that it wasn’t so much a case of switching faster as it was being slower at the non-switch trials, where shape followed shape and color followed color.

Does she perceive this finding accurately? I doubt it. Motivated with self-interest…

So does that mean that there’s no such thing as a bilingual advantage? No. It’s just one study.

You’ve done how many?

Pored over how many? Thousands?

Tried to rig how many?

And your best one still fails?

The null hypothesis must be accepted, bitch.

At BEST, there is no improvement. Science isn’t optimistic. You is slow.

As proven by this interview, QED.

The true edge, de Bruin believes, may come far later,

rich parents

and isn’t science all about one bitch’s beliefs?

and in a form that has little to do with task-switching and executive control; it may, she says, be the result of simple learning.

Private tutors.

Adults who speak multiple languages seem to resist the effects of dementia far better than monolinguals do.

They said that about brain training, control for diet.

Bilingualism, in other words, seems to have a protective effect on cognitive decline.

Not what the word means. Protective effect means they don’t get the disease.
Tired of lies.

That would be consistent with a story

of learning: we know that keeping cognitively nimble into old age is one of the best ways to protect yourself against dementia.

Then how can bilinguals forget an entire language in a short period of time?

If learning a language has the same effect as Sudoku, I know which is more time-efficient.

When the brain keeps learning, as it seems to do for people who retain more than one language, it has more capacity to keep functioning at a higher level.

No it has less. That’s how capacity works. It literally has less.
If certain brain cells are taken up with a task and that task is doubled, tripled or more (2, 3+ languages) then you can have less storage space for new things, including short-term memory (think like RAM).

Here’s a wikipedia tier argument of why you’re wrong.

And why bilinguals are slow IRL

That, in and of itself, is reason enough to learn a second, third, fourth, or fifth language—

I see no effect, let alone a compounding effect. How is 5 better than 2?
Journalists are dumb.

and to keep learning them as long as you’re able. The bilingual advantage may not appear in the exact guise researchers think of it today. But, on a fundamental level, bilingualism’s real benefits could be far more important.

Do Sudoku, read books, chug olive oil like a Hollywood actress drinks semen.
Don’t fall for bilingual propaganda.

Let’s check with people who know their shit.

Cambridge University: 

There are also drawbacks to being bilingual

The article didn’t mention drawbacks, did they?

I guess, after poring over thousands of studies, she must’ve magically missed ALL. OF. THEM.

But the scientific community recently has become increasingly sceptical of the bilingual advantage hypothesis. One of the main points of criticism is that differences between monolinguals and bilinguals when it comes to executive function are not always apparent.

Memo: If it’s a brain thing, it always shows.

This has generated a heated debate, especially in the Bilingualism Forum of the scientific journal Cortex, about whether bilingualism is associated with cognitive advantages or not.

Like the left handed thing. Other factors were responsible.
Lefties aren’t the master race of handedness, calm the fuck down.

Without IQ to signal over, people choose the most ridiculous bullshit. What’s next, mercury retrograde?

This is very simple. Find the high IQ and only the high IQ (1SD+). Check whether the monolingual ones are better at processing incoming verbal information (since that is what a language is).

If yes, monolingualism is better for the brain.

They’re tip-toeing around, someone will have to do it eventually!

This ability is called metacognition and is associated with, but separate from,

aka a good test

other areas where bilinguals have been shown to have an advantage. Surprisingly, however, we found that bilinguals had less insight into their performance than their monolingual peers.

Yet the Government insists kids study a second language.

TLDR: No but they lie.

“A quiet revolution happened in English primary schools last September, representing a historic curriculum change: language-learning was made compulsory for all children between seven and 11.”

“is involved in an international science project with funding from the European programme ‘Erasmus Plus'”

And there it is, anti-national sentiment.

Get ’em young if you can’t brainwash them into it at Uni.

At last, we are seeing a new language become a normal part of children’s learning from the beginning of their primary education – while they are confident and curious – rather than a challenging new subject associated with the pressures of starting secondary school.”

How long until compulsory Arabic, set your timers.

Actually, you need to start in the womb, when they can hear language.
Three at the latest, so this will actually accomplish no boost in fluency.
Give me the boy UNTIL he is seven, and I shall show you the man.
Not AT seven, idiots.

Why? Why force this on kids?

“Unfortunately, studies have showed that businesses often prefer multi-lingual applicants with English as their second language over monolingual

cucking for corporations, anti-white corporations

This is all about companies extracting as much lifeblood from you as possible.

Back to the thing bilinguals are shit at in the study, Cambridge writes:

This ability is a crucial function of everyday life, when we have to make decisions where the outcomes are not immediate. For example, when an entrepreneur reviews their company’s performance, they need to take into account a variety of factors – including, for example, revenues and expenses – in order to evaluate whether the company is doing well.

Notice how most successful companies are run by school drop-outs? Maybe monolinguals have an advantage that explains this?

We only evolved to speak one language each. From an evolutionary perspective and given how language is genetic in basis, forcing children to learn more is disabling healthy brain expression. It might be permanent if deployed during early development (primary school) due to neural pruning.

Confidence in their ideas and performance can be the determining factor in whether they decide to keep investing time in their company or give up and apply for another job (the so-called “exploitation exploration trade-off”).

or cost benefit to normal monolingual people who can do it

So you’re telling me bilinguals are delusional? Less realistic? About themselves? And their abilities? Yes, let them study their supposed magical advantage, I’m sure they’ll try to find some way to conjure up something.
And by forcing it on small children, there won’t be a control group of monolinguals to study, how convenient.

State force is inhumane.

There’s a confound with expecting Mandarin speakers to be creative if you look at their baseline but okay.

So we’re depriving small children of a potent imagination.

But TV is the problem?

Creative kids question authority, you see.

But we should be concerned about a purely instrumental view of modern languages that plays up advanced skills training at the expense of supporting a research-led discipline where literature, culture and history are investigated through the relevant languages.

Companies don’t even need them.

Why hire someone who speaks Spanish when all the Spanish people will flee to you because their economy is in the shitter? With mass immigration, languages are dead.

Cambridge study:

 However, monolinguals were better able than bilinguals to discriminate between when they were right and when they were wrong. In other words, bilinguals had less insight into their performance than monolinguals. This went against our initial predictions, as we expected to find a bilingual advantage in metacognitive processing. These results indicate that bilingualism may be associated with cognitive disadvantages as well as benefits.

Don’t allow kids to self-correct and they can’t self-teach.
No wonder teachers are pushing it.

Consider this quote from the British Council article about compulsory bilingualism.

“It is an ethos that firmly promotes bilingualism as an asset: as one pupil put it, ‘the more languages you know, the brainier you are’.”


It’s a way to make dumb kids look smart on a transcript.

Cambridge again:

However, monolinguals were better able than bilinguals to discriminate between when they were right and when they were wrong.

These results indicate that bilingualism may be associated with cognitive disadvantages.

British Council:

“Language awareness permeates the school: in addition to the one hour per week in which all children learn French, every opportunity is taken to introduce children to other languages, including Latin and the languages spoken by teachers and pupils.

Code for Arabic.


The Multilanguage & Cognition lab (MULTAC) at Anglia Ruskin University is currently undertaking a three-year project funded by the Leverhulme Trust to enhance our understanding of the bilingual mind.

no bias there

The lab has already published evidence of cognitive advantages

quelle surprise

associated with bilingualism

but not caused by
which is what the control freaks claim

more lies

I smell a rat

Leverhulme? Where do I know that name?
“Following a review by the Leverhulme Trust Board, this scheme has been discontinued with immediate effect. It is therefore now closed to new applicants.”


While many of us share the intuition that learning two languages is better, or believe we’ve been told that from the media or scientific studies, the actual evidence is mixed.

like the participants

ba dum dum tssh

Dr. Ellen Bialystok(link is external), a professor of psychology at York University, has been studying the pros and cons of bilingualism for almost 40 years. She and her team have found evidence on both sides of the bilingualism argument. They find that children who regularly speak more than one language (bilinguals), on average, have slight linguistic disadvantages but also cognitive advantages(link is external) as compared to children who speak only one language (monolinguals).

This woman hasn’t been mentioned.


Only positive in biased articles, no mention of people like this.

Those linguistic disadvantages must be studied and ideally, controlled by race, class and education.

Again, a genius study would resolve this debate.

“One of the findings from these studies was that bilinguals have minor disadvantages relative to monolinguals with regard to vocabulary. While the size of an individual’s vocabulary or lexicon varied widely, on average monolinguals had more vocabulary in their one language than bilinguals had in either of their languages alone. Also, the time (in milliseconds) it took to retrieve words when thinking was slightly longer for bilinguals.”

literally slower

 In particular, bilinguals are especially good at tasks that involve monitoring conflict, a skill one practices a lot if trying to use words from one lexicon while avoiding those from another.

that’s called cognitive dissonance
not a good thing

Poor design, the monolinguals and bilinguals hadn’t practiced.
This is like comparing athletes and normal people on cardiac health. One group has an unfair advantage so the test isn’t finding what you claim it does (poor internal validity). You can’t say it’s a fair test.

PT also nabs this: “As bilingual children learn and use multiple languages (appropriately monitoring and using words from the right language at the right time) they are exercising and strengthening their executive function via neuroplasticity.”

Cheating, in study terms.

“So while bilingual children may have a slightly smaller vocabulary for each language as compared to their peers who speak only one language, they gain a cognitive advantage by having strengthened executive function. ”

No, they tested one aspect of one memory function with a minor effect. They haven’t tested executive function and the ultimate, IQ.

Vocab deficiency and Reaction time (which is correlated highly to IQ FYI):

However, the bilingual group performed significantly lower in semantic fluency.

I know, I’ve met enough. It’s frustrating to stand there, putting up with their shit articulation for the thousandth time this month.

This pattern of performance in verbal fluency is consistent with that found in previous studies.”

Link from top is

The effect on linguistic performance is generally seen as a deficit

Generally. A disability.

Memory tasks based primarily on verbal recall are performed more poorly by bilinguals but memory tasks based primarily on executive control are performed better by bilinguals.

primarily? are they or not? poor design there

memo: short-term memory is vital to IQ

so you can maybe possibly find one exception to disabled recall but generally, they aren’t as good as remembering things, as you’d expect since more language capacity is taken up

Speculations regarding the mechanism responsible for these effects are described.

Language proficiency and verbal fluency: The bad

wow, science

It is now well documented that bilinguals generally control a smaller vocabulary in each language thanmonolinguals

Yet The New Yorker missed this. All of it.

This finding is especially important for descriptions of children’s development because vocabulary size is a central measure of children’s progress in both the oral and literate forms of language development. In some sense, vocabulary size serves as a proxy for the representational base of language that the child is constructing, with a richer and more diverse vocabulary reflecting a more elaborate understanding of language. However, developmental research has consistently shown that bilingual children control a smaller vocabulary in each language than their monolingual peers.

Aka they’re thick. They may technically know two but they don’t fully understand two.

To confirm this reported finding, we combined the standardized Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test scores of 971 children between the ages of 5 and 9 years,

primary age

about half of whom were bilingual, who had participated in a variety of studies in our lab over several years. The overall analysis showed that the monolinguals had a mean standard score of 105 and the bilinguals had a score of 95, a difference that was highly significant (Bialystok and Feng, in press).

Over 10%.

Holy shit.

The difference was found for children in each age group, and there was no interaction of age and language group, indicating that the vocabulary gap was constant throughout this sample.

Primary school compulsory language classes are bad for the brain.

The older children were in third and fourth grades at school and were following a curriculum that was heavily dependent on English language and literacy. Nonetheless, the average vocabulary size of the bilingual children was smaller than their monolingual classmates

It will make them dumber. If you care about the kids, stop.

The same pattern emerges for adults, although the measure in this case is not usually vocabulary size but rather access to vocabulary, or lexical retrieval

If I had a pound for every time I heard “er, I don’t know the English”.
So they don’t actually know the language in practice, either!

Using a variety of tasks, bilinguals have been shown to be slower in picture naming (Roberts, Garcia, Desrochers,Hernandez, 2002; Gollan, Montoya, Fennema-Notestine and Morris, 2005; Kaushanskaya and Marian, 2007), obtain lower scores on verbal fluency tasks (Rosselli et al., 2000; Gollan, Montoya and Werner, 2002; Portocarrero et al., 2007), encounter more tip of the tongue experiences (Gollan and Acenas, 2004), demonstrate poorer word identification through noise (Rogers et al., 2006), and experience more interference in lexical decision (Ransdell and Fischler, 1987). In all these studies, there is evidence that at least part of the problem is the interference that must be resolved from the other language. Manipulating the relation between the words in the two languages, for example, by controlling the cognate value or adjusting word frequency, systematically changes bilingual performance (Costa, 2005), suggesting that there is a central role for the relation between the words in these effects.

Angela de Bruin somehow forgot to mention any of those long references.

In her long research of the entire field.

One minor point that’s positive and they claim it’s Settled Science TM

totally ignoring all the neutral and negative findings, like that

or these

The bilingual deficits in lexical access and retrieval persist with aging (Gollan, Fennema-Notestine, Montoya and Jernigan, 2007), although a study by Gollan, Montoya, Cera, and Sandoval (2008) showed that the effects of aging interacted with word frequency in that older bilinguals demonstrated a smaller deficit for low-frequency words. In a study of younger and older monolinguals and bilinguals, we administered three tasks to assess verbal knowledge and retrieval: an English vocabulary test (PPVT-III), a version of the Boston Naming Test, and two tests of verbal fluency (Bialystok, Craik and Luk, 2008). The PPVT-III is a standardized test of receptive vocabulary in which the participant is shown four pictures and must indicate which of the four corresponds to a name spoken by the experimenter. In the Boston Naming Test (Kaplan, Goodglass and Weintraub, 1983) participants are asked to name a series of line drawings of objects. In our version we substituted verbal definitions for half of the drawings on the speculative assumption that accessing words would be more difficult from abstract definitions than from relatively concrete drawings because of the contextual support provided by the latter (Craik, 1983).

bias in favour of the bilinguals

Finally, in the fluency tests, participants had to say as many words as possible within one minute starting with a given letter or conforming to a given category. Following standard procedure the letters were F, A, and S and the category criterion was animals. In all these tasks, the bilinguals at both ages obtained lower scores than their monolingual counterparts.

The reason that bilinguals experience deficits in lexical access is not clear.

Seems pretty clear to me. Overload.

On one view, the explanation is attributed to the fact that bilinguals use each of their languages less often than monolinguals, creating “weaker links” among the relevant connections required for rapid
and fluent speech production (Michael and Gollan, 2005). This explanation follows from connectionist models in which the pathways that underlie the associative networks between words and concepts are distributed across two languages, making those associations with each language less practiced and therefore less fluid.

Imagine cutting your language centres in half.

This view is based on bilingual speech production modeling in which these retrieval effects are simulated in a connectionist network (Dijkstra, 2005). Alternatively, Hernandez and Li (2007) propose a sensorimotor account that involves the age of acquisition of the vocabulary in each language,
with different outcomes depending on the age of L2 acquisition. Other views attribute the reduction in lexical access to the conflict that is created by the competition from the corresponding item in the non-target language (Green, 1998). This competition requires a mechanism for controlling attention to the target language, possibly by inhibiting the interfering option. Generally, such conflict is resolved by the executive processes for control, attention, and switching. If these processes are involved in ordinary language production for bilinguals, then it is possible that their constant use in an ordinary and frequent context will have the consequence of transforming those processes through practice, making them more efficient and more available for a variety of applications.

The hype for additional languages is not justified, there are far more deficits (at least 7 or 8 types, likely more) than merits (1 of a tiny 1 test of a speculated 1 skill).

The pro-bilingual studies have to use pathological groups e.g. the deaf. You can’t generalize that.


As usual, the bilinguals were faster than the monolinguals on both the congruent and incongruent
trials, but the speech–sign bilinguals performed exactly the same as the monolinguals on both trial types.

So it ISN’T about dual language use. That result should be impossible.

This pattern supports the interpretation that the conflict for selection

overcoming a forced disability on the brain

between two active languages is central to the enhancement of executive control found in bilinguals.

Athletes can easier run up a flight of stairs than people who didn’t train, what a shocker, they must be superior human beings.

Following the idea that cognitive reserve builds up from extended experience with stimulating activities


and that this cognitive reserve protects against the onset of dementia….

aka it isn’t the actual language, it’s the studying!

Let’s check.

Engaging in hobbies for one or more hours every day might be protective against dementia in late life.

Ding ding ding! Teach them something useful! (Read: Anything else).

Previous paper concludes:

The overall conclusion from these various studies is that bilingualism is one of the experiences capable of influencing cognitive function and, to some extent, cognitive structure.

Brain damage. More distraction, just what kids need.

The effects, however, are not simple; the language deficit and the control advantage interact to create a complex picture of cognition that is different for bilinguals and monolinguals, but not in a way that can be simply defined as better, worse, or indifferent.

Translation: it isn’t better, you jerks.


“So while there are a host of advantages to the ‘bilingual brain’—executive control and memory benefits”


as you can see, they use one minor memory test of many to claim EF
that is one (1) finding

and only a few minor disadvantages

No, read the paper you linked. MANY. Major issues.

They are literally slower.

“The word retard dates as far back as 1426. It stems from the Latin verb retardare, meaning to hinder or make slow. The English adopted the word and used it as similar meaning, slow and delayed.”

Thus, parents might consider not only the cognitive benefits but the social and experiential ones as well when deciding whether the immersion school or enrichment program makes sense for their children.

It isn’t about the child, it’s about the politics of being enriched.

It’s about parental virtue signalling.

Eventually, they’ll move the native tongue to second-class status, as it stands in many schools, before banning it. You aren’t allowed to speak your own language in your homeland, don’t you feel free and liberated?

One response to “Don’t believe bilingual propaganda

  1. Pingback: Bilinguals NOT smarter, data twisted | Philosophies of a Disenchanted Scholar

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