This Independent Study examined how cross-language code-switching is processed and perceived. The following experiment compared how long English-French bilinguals, English monolinguals, and English-speaking French-language-learners took to detect instances of French/English code-switching in a semantically-rich narrative. Bilinguals displayed shorter change-detection response latencies than language learners and monolinguals, but the latter two groups did not significantly differ. These results provide insight into how the observed cognitive differences between bilinguals and monolinguals may develop, and offer support for the multi-language lexical processing theory of language interference. This study also addresses potential sociocultural origins of the observed language-level differences in code-switching perception by examining how Quebec’s French/English dichotomy may add additional meaning to the act of changing languages.


Duval, Marion

Second Advisor

Neuhoff, John


French and Francophone Studies; Psychology


Cognition and Perception | Cognitive Psychology | French Linguistics | Other French and Francophone Language and Literature | Social Psychology


code-switching, alternance codique, language, French, English, Quebec, perception, change blindness, change deafness

Publication Date


Degree Granted

Bachelor of Arts

Document Type

Senior Independent Study Thesis Exemplar



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