Research report 2015 - Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences
Language acquisition – a long way to go for the brain
Skeide, Michael A.; Friederici, Angela D.
Max-Planck-Institut für Kognitions- und Neurowissenschaften, Leipzig
SummaryThe timing of developmental trajectories in language acquisition is paradoxical. Some milestones are reached very rapidly. For example, embryos are able to discriminate vowels already in utero . Other milestones, however, like understanding grammatically complex sentences, are not even reached at the primary school age. What is the reason for this? Current neurobiological findings suggest that a brain network involved in processing grammatical information has to reach an adult-level maturity until it can provide its full function.