Elika Bergelson

Elika Bergelson

Crandall Family Assistant Professor

Education & Training

  • Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania 2013


Dr. Bergelson is accepting applications for PhD students in the 2018-2019 Cycle; she accepts through the Developmental and Cog/CogNeuro areas of P&N and the CNAP program.

In my research, I try to understand the interplay of processes during language acquisition.
In particular, I am interested in how word learning relates to other aspects of learning language (i.e. speech sound acquisition), and social/cognitive development more broadly (e.g. joint attention processes) in the first two years of life.

I pursue these questions using two main approaches: in-lab measures of early comprehension and production (mostly with eye-tracking experiments), and at-home measures of infants' linguistic and social environment (as in the SEEDLingS project)


Language acquisition, word learning, cognitive development, psycholinguistics

Bergelson, Elika, and Daniel Swingley. “Early Word Comprehension in Infants: Replication and Extension..” Language Learning and Development : The Official Journal of the Society for Language Development, vol. 11, no. 4, Jan. 2015, pp. 369–80. Epmc, doi:10.1080/15475441.2014.979387. Full Text Open Access Copy

Bergelson, Elika, and Daniel Swingley. “The acquisition of abstract words by young infants..” Cognition, vol. 127, no. 3, June 2013, pp. 391–97. Epmc, doi:10.1016/j.cognition.2013.02.011. Full Text Open Access Copy

Bergelson, Elika, et al. “Differences in mismatch responses to vowels and musical intervals: MEG evidence..” Plos One, vol. 8, no. 10, Jan. 2013. Epmc, doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0076758. Full Text Open Access Copy

Bergelson, Elika, and Daniel Swingley. “Young toddlers' word comprehension is flexible and efficient..” Plos One, vol. 8, no. 8, Jan. 2013. Epmc, doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0073359. Full Text Open Access Copy

Bergelson, Elika, and Daniel Swingley. “At 6-9 months, human infants know the meanings of many common nouns..” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, vol. 109, no. 9, Feb. 2012, pp. 3253–58. Epmc, doi:10.1073/pnas.1113380109. Full Text Open Access Copy

Bergelson, Elika, and William J. Idsardi. “A neurophysiological study into the foundations of tonal harmony..” Neuroreport, vol. 20, no. 3, Feb. 2009, pp. 239–44. Epmc, doi:10.1097/wnr.0b013e32831ddebf. Full Text Open Access Copy

Poeppel, David, and Elika Bergelson. “How music speaks to us.” Nature, vol. 452, no. 7188, Springer Science and Business Media LLC, Apr. 2008, pp. 695–96. Crossref, doi:10.1038/452695a. Full Text Open Access Copy


Bergelson, Elika, and Daniel Swingley. “Social and Environmental Contributors to Infant Word Learning..” Cogsci, edited by Markus Knauff et al., cognitivesciencesociety.org, 2013. Open Access Copy

Bergelson, Elika, and William J. Idsardi. “Structural Biases in Phonology: Infant and Adult Evidence from Artificial Language Learning.” Proceedings of the 33rd Annual Boston University Conference on Language Development, Vols 1 and 2, edited by J. Chandlee et al., CASCADILLA PRESS, 2009, pp. 85-+.