While there is little to no debate over whether or not children and adults acquire language the same way, the process of language development in children is regularly debated. Inherent in language acquisition are factors affecting the language development. As such, in a harried effort to convey even just the smallest amount of intelligent interpretation, this introductory essay will speed-walk through the aforementioned topics.
Following nature’s example, the first topic is how do children acquire language? Depending on who is asked, children are born with an innate knowledge of a “universal grammar” and their knowledge evolves from there. On the other end of the spectrum is the viewpoint holding that humans are born with physiological traits allowing us to acquire language and no innate knowledge of language itself. Then there are those that lie somewhere in-between those two extremes. This paper assumes that there is some form of innateness but most if not all of a child’s language acquisition occurs due to physiological traits.
While both children and adults have the ability to acquire language the process is different. Children are not expected to speak in sentences containing relatively correct grammar and vocabulary until they are approximately five years of age at which point they begin formal schooling and, for some, begin to learn a secondary language in a classroom environment. Children that are multilingual developed those languages at home, school, or a mix of both locations. However the learning process of the language is more gradual speeding up at high school or through necessity caused by a move. Essentially children are not expected to have more than an intermediate grasp on the language/ languages until high school, which, if the clock starts at five years of age, means they are given seven to eight years to learn the language with relatively basic expectations.
Contrasting with that is the adult language learning experience. In most cases...