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Title: The effects of bilinguals' code mixing on mathematical ability.
Authors: Wong, Wing Sheung.
Keywords: DRNTU::Social sciences
Issue Date: 2012
Abstract: Bilingualism is ubiquitous around the world. Knowing two languages inevitably leads to language contact, giving rise to phenomenon of code switching and code mixing. Past research have indicated a bilingual advantage in executive functions, attributing it to bilinguals’ habitual language switching which utilises more executive resources. The more a person engages in code mixing in daily life, the better he or she performs in executive tasks and task switching. These executive functions are also associated with higher levels of mathematics learning and ability. On the other hand, mathematical ability is also related to language ability. Given the traditional opposing belief that code mixing causes poor language proficiency, one would wonder if it is true that lifelong code mixing practices have an impact on mathematical ability. Hence, this current study investigates whether the benefits of code mixing ability extend to solving mathematics questions in mixed languages. Due to the benefits of code mixing ability, it is predicted that better performance scores are obtained in the mixed condition as compared to one language condition. However, there is a traditional belief that code mixing is detrimental and should not used in teaching at all. Therefore, an alternate hypothesis proposes that participants will perform better if they are exposed to only one language while learning mathematics. Support was found for the latter hypothesis; marginal significance was found in the English condition over the mixed condition. This shows support for Singapore’s current method of mathematical teaching in one language, and that code mixing is not yet ready to be used seriously in learning mathematics until further benefits have been found for Singapore.
Rights: Nanyang Technological University
Fulltext Permission: restricted
Fulltext Availability: With Fulltext
Appears in Collections:HSS Student Reports (FYP/IA/PA/PI)

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