Professional Biography

Dr. Yuko Butler is the Director of Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) and Professor in the Educational Linguistics Division at Penn GSE. She serves as a professional consultant on language assessments of young learners at Educational Testing Service (ETS), the Center for Applied Linguistics (CAL), and the Eiken Foundation (Japan). She was awarded the National Academy of Education’s Spencer Postdoctoral Fellowship in 2004, studying East Asian perspectives on TESOL.

Originally from Tokyo, Dr. Butler earned her Ph.D. in Educational Psychology from Stanford University. She worked at their Center for Educational Research as a postdoctoral fellow, and jointly received the 1999 Cognitive Studies in Educational Practice Award for her research on the effects of metacognitive approaches to improve English as a Second Language (ESL) for language minority students. She then taught California’s Crosscultural, Language, and Academic Development certificate program at San Jose State University.

Research Interests and Current Projects


Ph.D. (Educational Psychology) Stanford University, 1999

M.A. (Linguistics) Stanford University, 1998

M.A. (Comparative Education) UCLA, 1991

B.A. (Asian History) University of Tokyo, 1987

Areas of Expertise

Language assessment

Cross-linguistic and cross-cultural learning and teaching

Second language acquisition among young learners

Bilingualism and biliteracy

Selected Publications