Current research in bilingual children’s language development with one language dominant has shown that one linguistic system can affect the other. This is called Crosslinguistic Influence (CLI). This paper explores whether CLI is experienced by a bilingual child raised in two typologically distinct languages in terms of phonological development. It uses data from the study of a child simultaneously acquiring Indonesian and German between the ages of 12 months - 20 months, with Indonesian as the dominant language. The sound segments developed by the child showed universal tendencies, with the appearance of bilabials prior to alveolar sounds, followed by velar sounds. The sounds were produced mostly in the form of stops, nasals and glides. Three phonological processes were displayed by the child: substitution, assimilation and syllable structures. The front rounded vowel [ʏ], which exists in German but not in the Indonesian sound system, was systematically replaced by the palatal approximant [j]. This approximant exists in the Indonesian sound system but not in the German phonemic inventory. This provides evidence that, in terms of phonological development, the child experienced CLI, but only for certain sound transfers.


phonological development, bilingual child


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