CPH Theory, Early Classroom Instruction and Age-Related Issues that Are Separable from Age

  • David SingletonEmail author
Part of the Second Language Learning and Teaching book series (SLLT)


This paper starts with a brief critical overview of the hypothesis—often elevated in popular discourse to ‘theory’—that language learning is subject to maturational constraints of a kind which beyond a certain age preclude the complete acquisition of the language in question (Muñoz & Singleton, 2011). It goes on to relate this ‘theory’ to the practical question of when the teaching of languages should begin in schools, and concludes that the relationship between the two is extremely problematic (Singleton, 2012). In conclusion the paper points out that some of the age-related issues that can be identified as relevant to language learning are not in fact strictly related to maturation (Moyer, 2013) and could be seen having the capacity to manifest themselves pedagogically in something like an age-neutral manner.


Critical Period Foreign Language Native Speaker Target Language Language Acquisition 
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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of PannoniaVeszprémHungary
  2. 2.State University of Applied SciencesKoninPoland

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