Benefits of bilingualism: Evidence from Mormon missionaries
Several studies have argued that learning a foreign language has the potential to increase the general cognitive ability and test scores of students. In this analysis, the Mormon missionary program is used to test whether or not students who were assigned to learn a foreign language performed better in college. The results indicate that the increase in GPA due to serving a Mormon mission is the same for students that were assigned to a foreign-speaking mission relative to students that were assigned to an English-speaking mission. These results are robust to controlling for factors such as choice of major and class load.
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