Discussion 1: Language AcquisitionImagine a baby learning words for the first time from immediate family members and close relatives. Picture a group of adolescents preparing for an exam in a second language. Envision adults using language-learning software before travel to a foreign country. Consider the effects of biology and environment on language acquisition in these examples.Compare the ease of learning one’s native language as a child to the acquisition of a second language as a teenager or an adult. Do some individuals pick up new languages more easily than others? Do some children acquire language skills more readily? What might answers to these questions indicate as to the contributions of biological and environmental factors to language acquisition?For this Discussion, select one biological and one environmental factor that influence native and second language acquisition. Consider how each factor might influence both native and second language acquisition.With these thoughts in mind:Post by Day 3a description of the biological and environmental factors that you selected. Then explain how each might influence native and second language acquisition. Provide examples to support your response.Be sure to support your postings and responses with specific references to the Learning Resources.Discussion 2: Language and Cognition“He never learned to speak more than a few words, but he developed some sensitivity to sounds and mastered table manners and polite comportment.” (Douthwaite, 2002, p. 21)Here, Douthwaite describes historical accounts of a feral child discovered in Germany and taken in to live out his life under the care of “civilized” keepers. Psychologists and neurologists have long devoted attention to cases of “wild children,” those who begin maturation outside of human society, with little or no human contact. Cases involving such children inform understanding of the cognitive processes inherent to language development. Consider how the effects of environmental deprivation compare to the effects of deafness on the development of language. Another influence on language production and comprehension is neurological disruption. For example, strokes—brain damage due to blockage of blood supply or hemorrhage—have helped to differentiate important sites in the brain, as well as their functional implications.For this Discussion, consider influences of environmental deprivation, deafness, and neurological disruption on language acquisition, production, and comprehension.With these thoughts in mind:Post by Day 4an explanation of how environmental deprivation, deafness, and neurological disruption (e.g., stroke or brain injury) might influence language acquisition, production, or comprehension. Provide examples for each to support your response.Be sure to support your postings and responses with specific references to the Learning Resources.one page each
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