Age as an
Krishna K. BistaABSTRACT
This paper examines the relationship of age factor to second language acquisition. Age as an affectivefactor brings different performance stages in second language learning. The researchers in relation to theCritical Period Hypothesis and other variables have derived two major aspects of language learning--theyounger the better and the older the better. However, there is no linear pattern of learning among the sameage group of learners, and they learn differently and individually depending on variables like learningopportunities, the motivation to learn, individual differences and learning styles.
Age as an Affective Factor in Second Language AcquisitionAge is one of the affective factors in Second Language Acquisition (SLA). A greatvariety of views have been expressed on the age question in children and adults who learn either the native language (L1) or the second language (L2) in different ages. Age as an affective factor brings different performance stages in second language learning. Various explanations andinterpretations of second language acquisition exist while considering age. However, there is nolinear pattern of learning among the same age group of learners, and they learn differently andindividually depending on variables.Most people believed that younger learners have certain advantages over older learners inlanguage learning while others believed the opposite. The common notion is that younger children learn L2 easily and quickly in comparison to older children (Ellis, 2008; Larsen-Freeman, 2008; Mayberry & Lock, 2003). The relationship between age and success in SLA,though complex in nature, is linked to the Critical Period Hypothesis (CPH). CPH, also known as“the sensitive period,” is defined as “the period during which a child can acquire language easily,