Elisabet Garcia Gonzalez

Image of Elisabet Garcia Gonzalez
Norwegian version of this page
Phone +47 22854043
Mobile phone +47 40889573
Room 433
Visiting address Niels Henrik Abels vei 36 Henrik Wergelands hus 0313 Oslo
Postal address Postboks 1102 Blindern 0316 Oslo
Other affiliations Faculty of Humanities (Student)

Academic interests

My interests lay within the cognitive science of bilingualism. In particular, I’m interested in the cognitive processes involved in the use of two or more languages, and the overall development of language and cognition.

My PhD project deals with one of the hottest topics in bilingualism: the relationship between bilingualism and Executive Function. While a lot of research has found that bilingualism generally improves EF, these findings are increasingly controversial. I approach this question differently: could individual differences in EF affect the acquisition and development of bilingualism in young children? I tackle this question by looking at how code-switching in children is influenced by both individual and environment factors. My goal is to better understand this relationship and hopefully make an impact in the lives of multilingual speakers, their families and educators.

More broadly, my project tackles various factors that influence language and cognitive development in young children and adolescents. In the midst of the global Covid-19 pandemic, we investigated how social distancing measures and homeschooling had affected the use of minority languages in Norway. Among other findings, we observed that parents' linguistic practices and views on multilingualism had an effect in children's use of their home languages during the lockdown. You can read more about these findings on this New York Times' article

Currently, I'm working together with Alicia Luque and Jason Rothman at UiT to investigate neurocognitive processes and linguistic variation in heritage speakers of Spanish in Norway.


I earned my BA’s degree on Spanish Language and Literature (2014) by the Autonomous University of Madrid. Later I obtained a MA in General Linguistics (2015) and a research MA in Linguistics (2017) with a focus on language acquisition, both at the University of Amsterdam. I have worked as a teacher of Spanish as a second language and assisted in various projects related to bilingualism.

I am also an avid reader and enjoy wirting from time to time (see links below if interested). My topics of interest are usually related to language and society or life in a foreign country. I have a great interest in history and the diaspora of communities. I enjoy my free time connecting to diverse groups of people through literature, language and culture. When I'm not working on my research, you can find me on a café reading a book, and probably starting a conversation with a stranger about some random thing.I also manage a book club for international women in Oslo. 


I am the current representative for fixed-term academic employees at the University Board for the period 1 August, 2021, to 31 July, 2022, where I take particular interest in rasing awareness about diversity at the university and mental health of Doctoral Research Fellows and Postoctoral Fellows. I was deputy representative for the same position for the period 1 August, 2020, to 31 July, 202. In addition, I am also a member of the Society for Spanish researchers in Norway (Spanske Forskere i Norge), with whom I collaborate on science dissemination activities. I am a member of the forum for clinical linguistics and language acquisition, which I coordinated from Oct 2019 to June 2021.

In March 2022, I organized the international event 'Intersectional Experiences in Academia' with Doctoral Research Fellow Ingvild Badhwar Valen-Sendstad, funded by the Equal Opportunity and Diversity fund of the Faculty of Humanities. I consider this event tp be one of the greatest achievements of my personal and professional life, as I believe our society, and its scientific advancement, can only progress if we are willing to accept that our professional and personal success is not a product of merit only, but of the factors and circumstances that shape our access to every layer of our society.


Tags: Code-switching, Multilingualism, Psycholinguistics, Multilingual competence, Bilingualism and cognition, Executive functions, Neurolinguistics


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  • García González, Elisabet (2022). Podcast Interview - La ciencia de los niños bilingües. [Radio]. Podcast, Noosfera.
  • García González, Elisabet ; Liu, Liquan & Lanza, Elizabeth (2021). Multilingual Families during the COVID-19 Pandemic: Parental beliefs, practices and opportunities for increased minority language use.
  • García González, Elisabet & Lanza, Elizabeth (2021). Languages in Lockdown.
  • García González, Elisabet (2020). The Cognition behind Language Switching. ¿Qué pasa en nuestra mente?
  • García González, Elisabet (2020). Punto de enlace - Elisabet García, investigadora en noruega del multilingüismo -. [Radio]. RTVE - Radio Exterior - Punto de enlace.
  • García González, Elisabet (2020). Found in translation: Towards a multilingual world.
  • Lanza, Elizabeth; Hardach, Sophie & García González, Elisabet (2020). In Quarantine, Kids Pick Up Parents’ Mother Tongues. [Internet]. The New York Times.

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Published Sep. 2, 2019 9:50 AM - Last modified July 29, 2022 11:50 AM