Assistant Professor
Department of Psychology & Neuroscience
Duke University

Contact Information:

Research Interests & Goals:
Elika Bergelson is an Assistant Professor in the Psychology & Neuroscience Department at Duke University. Dr. Bergelson’s interests lie in figuring out how infants learn language from the world around them. Her lab uses two main approaches: studying infants’ behavior in carefully controlled in-lab studies (e.g. eyetracking, elicited production, discrimination) and studying infants’ experiences in their home environments (i.e. corpus analyses of naturalistic audio and video recordings).

Her work has found that infants begin to understand common words around 6 months, but that aspects of word-form and semantic representations continue to sharpen over first years of life.


Bergelson, E., & Aslin, R. (in press). Semantic Specificity in One-Year-Olds’ Word Comprehension. Language Learning and Development.

Frank, M., Bergelson, E., Bergmann, C., Cristia, A., Floccia, C., Gervain, J., Hamlin, J., Hannon, E., Kline, M., Levelt, C., Lew-Williams, C., Nazzi, T., Panneton, R., Rabagliati, H., Soderstrom, M., Sullivan, J., Waxman, S., Yurovsky, D. (2017). A collaborative approach to infant research: Promoting reproducibility, best practices, and theory building. Infancy.

Bergelson, E., & Swingley, D. (2012). At 6 to 9 months, human infants know the meanings of many common nouns. Proceedings of the Nat’l Academy of Sciences of the USA, 109, 3253-3258.

Bergelson, E., & Swingley, D. (2013). The Acquisition of Abstract Words by Young Infants. Cognition. 127, 391-397.