A bilingual classroom.

A bilingual classroom.

Speaking multiple languages is like exercise for your brain. That’s according to a growing body of research suggesting that bilingualism can have cognitive benefits beyond the realm of language use. Recent studies say it may improve the brain’s ability to multitask, and could even mean a four- to five- year delay in the onset of Alzheimer’s symptoms. Some believe this area of research will advance our understanding of how to keep our brains healthy longer, and could prompt people to reconsider the value of bilingual education. The latest on the impact of bilingualism on the brain.


  • Ellen Bialystok distinguished research professor of psychology at York University
  • Judith Kroll director, Center for Language Science at Pennsylvania State University
  • Michael Ullman director of the Brain and Language Lab at Georgetown University; Professor in the Georgetown University Departments of Neuroscience and Linguistics

Video: The Stroop Test

Researchers say speaking two languages helps the brain tackle tough cognitive tasks like the Stroop Test, developed in the 1930s by John Ridley Stroop.

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