Scientific congresses, symposiums and conference proceedings : Unpublished conference
Social & behavioral sciences, psychology : Theoretical & cognitive psychology
Engel de Abreu, Pascale mailto [University of Luxembourg > Faculty of Language and Literature, Humanities, Arts and Education (FLSHASE) > Educational Measurement and Applied Cognitive Science (EMACS)]
International Meeting II: Working Memory
26-27th of August, 2009
[en] working memory ; phonological loop ; central executive ; learning
[en] The aim of the present study was to investigate the contribution of two working memory
systems (the phonological loop and the central executive) to children’s learning in the
areas of vocabulary, language comprehension, reading, spelling, mathematical skills, and
foreign language acquisition. The term working memory refers to the ability to store and
manipulate information in mind for a brief period of time, in the course of ongoing
cognitive activities (Baddeley, 2000). A sample of 119 Luxembourgish children, learning
German and French as secondary languages were assessed longitudinally over a 3-year
time period. In Luxembourg, children learn to speak, read, and write in two languages that
are different from their native language Luxembourgish. A battery of working memory,
and learning ability tests were administered. Children were tested in kindergarten (5 years
of age), in first, and in second grade with a one year interval between each testing wave.
Multiple assessments of each construct made it possible to construct latent variables, and
apply structural equation modeling techniques to explore the underlying theoretical
structure of working memory in young children, and possible links with learning. Results
indicate that relations between the working memory measures were best characterized by
a model consisting of two related but separable constructs corresponding to the
phonological loop and the central executive. Individual differences in phonological loop
functioning and the central executive were found to be remarkably stable from
kindergarten through second grade. The data further showed that both memory
components were differentially associated with learning: Whereas the phonological loop
was more specifically linked to early language development and vocabulary in particular,
the central executive appeared to make more general contributions to classroom related
learning. The findings lend strong support to the position that the phonological loop is one
of the main contributors to new word learning in both native and non-native languages by
supporting the formation of stable phonological representations of new words in long-term
memory. Furthermore the findings fit well with the position that the central executive might
play an important role in the monitoring and processing of information during complex and demanding activities present in many classroom situations. In conclusion, the presented
evidence of (a) the stability of individual differences in young children’s working memory
capacity and, (b) causal relations of working memory with learning reinforces the value of
early screening of working memory abilities to identify children who are at risk of poor
academic progress over the coming years.
Fonds National de la Recherche - FnR

There is no file associated with this reference.

Bookmark and Share SFX Query

All documents in ORBilu are protected by a user license.