Psychonomic Bulletin & Review

, Volume 25, Issue 2, pp 704–709 | Cite as

On the role of language membership information during word recognition in bilinguals: Evidence from flanker-language congruency effects

  • Mathieu Declerck
  • Joshua Snell
  • Jonathan Grainger
Brief Report


According to some bilingual language comprehension models (e.g., BIA), language membership information has a direct influence on word processing. However, this idea is not shared by all models (e.g., BIA+). To investigate this matter, we manipulated the language membership of irrelevant flanking words while French–English bilinguals performed a lexical decision task on centrally located target words and nonwords. The target words were either French or English words, flanked by words that were either in the same language as the target (language congruent) or in the other language (language incongruent). We found that lexical decisions to the target words were harder in the language-incongruent condition, indicating that language membership information was extracted from the flanking words and that this affected identification of the central target words, as predicted by the architecture of the BIA model.


Bilingualism Language membership Word recognition Flanker task 

Supplementary material

13423_2017_1374_MOESM1_ESM.docx (17 kb)
ESM 1 (DOCX 14 kb)


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Copyright information

© Psychonomic Society, Inc. 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mathieu Declerck
    • 1
    • 2
  • Joshua Snell
    • 1
    • 2
  • Jonathan Grainger
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Laboratoire de Psychologie CognitiveAix-Marseille Université and Centre National de la Recherche ScientifiqueMarseilleFrance
  2. 2.Centre National de la Recherche ScientifiqueParisFrance

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