The main aim of the present study was to examine whether perceptions of bilingualism differed between two bilingual groups, those whose elementary education was shaped by a Spanish immersion program and those who had received an English-focused education. A structured interview was administered to gather information about self-perceived language proficiency, and views and use of bilingualism, whereas a naming task was utilized to assess objective proficiency in English and Spanish. Although groups did not differ in actual and perceived overall proficiency, a few differences existed in use and perceived utility of bilingualism. Results suggest that in a context where bilingualism has historical and cultural roots, and English is the dominant language in professional settings, earlier formal immersion in the nondominant language may do little to improve perceptions and use of bilingualism in everyday life.
Teaching Methods and Strategies
Structured English Immersion
Program Design and Implementation
Dual Language Programs