The question of interest in this study was whether bilingual individuals show superior executive control compared to monolingual participants. Findings are mixed, with studies showing advantage, disadvantage, or no difference between bilingual and monolingual speakers. In this study, we used different experimental conditions to examine implicit learning, resistance to interference, monitoring, and switching, independently. In addition, we matched our monolingual and bilingual participants on baseline response time. Bilingual participants demonstrated faster implicit learning, greater resistance to interference, more efficient switching compared to monolingual participants. The groups did not differ in monitoring. In conclusion, depending on task complexity and on the target executive control component, there are different patterns of bilingual advantage, beyond the global faster processing speed documented in previous studies. Bilingual young adults showed more efficient adjustments of the cognitive system in response to changes in task demands.
Marton, K., Goral, M., Campanelli, L., Yoon, J., & Obler, L. K. (2017). Executive control mechanisms in bilingualism: Beyond speed of processing. Bilingualism: Language and Cognition, 20(3), 613-631. doi: 10.1017/S1366728915000930