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Jean Berko Gleason

ByJean Berko GleasonThe Secret Life of Scientists and EngineersThe Secret Life of Scientists and Engineers

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“It must mean something in some language.”


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Jean Berko Gleason is a psycholinguist who studies how we acquire and use language. The shortest language Jean speaks is Munchkin.


Jean is a speed demon who drives fast, and refuses to touch an automatic transmission. Her first car burnt to the ground.

Hi, Thanks, and Goodbye

Jean Berko Gleason is fascinated by language, but annoyed at a child who doesn't say "thank you."

An Efficient Driver

Jean Berko Gleason confesses that driving "efficiently" actually means driving really fast.

30 Second Science with Jean Berko Gleason

We give Jean Berko Gleason 30 seconds to describe her science and does it in 28, even though she "hadn't thought about it."

10 Questions for Jean Berko Gleason

We ask Jean Berko Gleason 10 questions and she explains what she has in common with teenaged boys.

Blog Posts

Ugga Da Bugga
Ask Jean Your Questions
Secret Life Post Card: Jean Plays Polo
Trick or Treat: The Halloween Routine
The Wug Revolution
“Hi, Thanks, And Goodbye”
The Language Of Science
What’s A Wug?
“Mad Men” And Mango Lemonade
Secret Life Snap Shots #4 – #6


About Jean Berko Gleason

Jean is a Professor Emerita at Boston University. She is one of the founding mothers of the field of psycholinguistics.

Original funding for "The Secret Life of Scientists and Engineers" was provided by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.