Judith Kroll, Distinguished Professor of language science at the University of California, Irvine, has been elected a fellow by the American Academy of Arts & Sciences. The 241st class of inductees includes more than 250 extraordinary people across America and around the world who help solve the world’s most urgent challenges, create meaning through art, and contribute to the common good from every field, discipline and profession.

Kroll is receiving the honor for her research revealing the unique way bilingual people juggle the presence of two languages in one mind and brain. Supported by grants from the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health, her studies have shown that bilingualism provides a tool for exploring the interplay between language and cognition that’s otherwise obscure in speakers of just one language.

“Professor Kroll’s work demonstrates the academic excellence that distinguishes those elected to the American Academy of Arts & Sciences,” said Hal S. Stern, UCI provost and executive vice chancellor. “This is yet another illustration of the remarkable achievements of UCI’s faculty, which includes 44 members of the National Academies and 35 members of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences.”

"A highly innovative scholar of bilingualism as well as an exceptional mentor, professor Kroll's many accomplishments more than warrant this recognition," said Bill Maurer, social sciences dean. "She has led a distinguished career and we are all honored that she has chosen to spend the next phase of it here at UC Irvine where her contributions to language science and education will help further propel our campus and overall impact in this burgeoning area of importance." 

“It is a great honor to have been elected a fellow by the American Academy of Arts & Sciences,” Kroll said. “The research I’ve done at UCI would not have been possible without the wonderful collaborations I’ve had with a great group of students, postdocs and colleagues here.”

She earned a doctorate at Brandeis University and in 2019 joined UCI’s faculty.

Kroll is currently the principal investigator on a Partnerships for International Research and Education grant from the NSF to develop an international research network and program of training to enable language scientists at all levels (undergraduate, graduate and postdoctoral) to pursue research abroad on the science of bilingualism.

She is the author of more than 100 studies that have appeared in publications including the Journal of Experimental Psychology, Cognition, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and Brain & Language.

Kroll is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Psychological Association, the Association for Psychological Science, the Psychonomic Society and the Society of Experimental Psychologists. She was a founding editor of the journal Bilingualism: Language and Cognition and among the founding organizers of Women in Cognitive Science, an NSF-supported group that promotes the advancement of women in the cognitive sciences.

Founded in 1780, the American Academy of Arts & Sciences is one of the country’s oldest learned societies and independent policy research centers, convening elected members from the academic, business and government sectors to respond to challenges facing the nation and the world. 

-Tom Vasich, UCI

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