Fluency across Multilingual Speakers (MultiFluency)


The MultiFluency project examines the impact of individual speaking style in L1 (first language) and cross-linguistic differences (transfer) on second (L2) and third language (L3) speech. More specifically, we examine Finnish-Swedish bilingual university students’ fluency in their L1s and their effect on L2 English speech fluency. In the project, speech samples from a comparison group of L1 Finnish speakers are also collected to examine fluency across several languages in the participants’ repertoire (L2 English and L3 Swedish). The L1s examined in the project are thus Swedish and Finnish, and the target languages are Finnish, Swedish, and English. In the project, we will therefore be able to compare multilingual speakers’ spoken language features across different target languages and L1s.

The project consists of three stages, and each stage provides its own perspective on multilingual learners’ fluency. In the first stage of the project (2020–2021), we examined differences and connections across speech fluency measures in Finnish, Swedish and English among Finnish-Swedish bilingual and Finnish-speaking university students. In the second stage (2021–2022; ongoing), we examine the effects of individual speaking style and cross-linguistic differences on L2 English and L3 Swedish fluency assessment. In the third stage of the project (2023), we will examine the cognitive fluency of multilingual speakers using eye-tracking methodology.

Research Team:
Pekka Lintunen – Principal Investigator, 2020–2023
Pauliina Peltonen – Project Researcher, 2020–2021
Elina Lehtilä – Project Researcher, 2021–2022
Eva-Lydia Mäki – Research Assistant, 2020–2021
Saara Naapila – Research Assistant, 2020–2021

The project is funded by the Swedish Cultural Foundation in Finland (2020–2023).

Svenska kulturfonden