Working memory capacity: Is there a bilingual advantage?

Ileana Ratiu, Tamiko Azuma

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    49 Scopus citations


    Previous studies suggest that bilinguals have certain executive function advantages over monolinguals. However, few studies have examined specific working memory (WM) differences between monolinguals and bilinguals using complex span tasks. In the current study, 52 bilingual and 53 monolingual speakers were administered simple and complex WM span tasks, including a backward digit-span task, standard operation span tasks and a non-verbal symmetry span task. WM performance was a strong predictor of performance on other WM tasks, whereas bilingual status was not. Thus, the present study did not find evidence of a bilingual advantage in WM capacity.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)1-11
    Number of pages11
    JournalJournal of Cognitive Psychology
    Issue number1
    StatePublished - Jan 2 2015


    • Bilingualism
    • Executive function
    • Working memory

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology


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