Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Dr. Yu-Cheng Lin

Second Advisor

Dr. Michiyo Hirai

Third Advisor

Dr. Ralph Carlson


The mouse-tracking study examined whether early musical experience leads to changes of inhibitory control in numerical processing for bilingual speakers, as has not investigated in previous studies. Twenty-eight Spanish-English bilingual students completed two Stroop-like numerical and physical size judgment tasks via a mouse-tracking paradigm. Results showed that response times were slower during both incongruent and neutral trials for bilinguals who had received early musical training (before age 13) when compared to bilinguals who had received late musical training (after age 13) across tasks. Furthermore, hand trajectories revealed that a spatial attraction toward the incorrect response was more pronounced in bilinguals who had received early musical training when compared to those who had received late musical training. Both cognitive and motor measurements indicate that Spanish-English bilingual speakers with musical experiences showed both numerical and physical size congruity effects in Stroop tasks. Results demonstrate that musical experience enhances inhibitory control on numerical tasks for bilingual speakers.


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