Volume 1, Issue 2
  • ISSN 2589-2053
  • E-ISSN: 2589-207x



Research over more than forty years has shown consistently that earlier L2 starters do not in the long term maintain the linguistic advantage of an early start over older starters. What, then, in the light of the widespread setting aside of the evidence regarding the apparent uselessness of an early start, is one to advise in respect of early L2 instruction? In this paper we discuss four factors which emerge as perhaps having relevance in this regard: the role of (bi)literacy skills, the role of language learning motivation, the role of factors relating to the transition from primary to secondary school, and the role of intensity of L2 instruction. We suggest that there are a number of broader macro-institutional factors, such as the impact of classroom experiences, that may impede the goal sought by the offering of numerous years of continued FL instruction.

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