The effect of birth order on learning a second or foreign language

Yasin Khoshhal

Abstract


Psychologically, birth order has the most essential influence on the way children in a family take different roles. Studies show the difference among the siblings in different viewpoints such as cognitive maturity, motivation and so on. What has not been clarified is the relationship that may exist between birth order and the procedure of learning a second or foreign language for the children. Different attitudes bring various types of perspectives toward learning a second or foreign language, we can refer to the study that Saunders (2003) mentioned in his book in which positive attitudes to language learning was observed, thus children being born in different orders may have different views toward learning a second or foreign language. This paper tries to shed as much light as possible on the concept of birth order and seeks to find a relationship that already hasn’t been cleared up between birth order and the effect it might have on learning a second or foreign language. In order to come to this conclusion, the relationships between birth order and personality traits, intelligence, educational attainment and cognitive maturity have been scrutinized. Finally some studies which exclusively have been worked on the effect of birth order and vocabulary development are presented. As a result we found that there is a conventional relationship between birth order and learning a second or foreign language. 


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