Dr. Jean E. Robertson passed away in Sherwood Park, AB on January 17, 2018 at the age of 97 years. Dr. Robertson taught for the Government in Ethiopia from 1948-1951 and then served with SIM Canada in both Ethiopia (1951-1957) and Niger (1988-1993). She was a professor in the Department of Elementary Education of the Faculty of Education at the University of Alberta from 1965 – 1985. Jean was also inducted to the Reading Hall of Fame in 1988.
When I first started attending IRA conventions in the late 1960s, Jean Robertson was very active in the research strand. Jean did seminal work on comprehension, especially related to the role of connectives in shaping comprehension (Robertson, 1968). Her work was prophetic! She did this without benefit of the later work of functional linguists and cognitivists who coined the construct of cohesion to characterize what she came to understand from the close examination of the syntax of school texts. I used her work in my dissertation in 1969. I always admired the care and creativity of her work.
P. David Pearson
Evelyn Lois Corey Emeritus Professor of Instructional Science and Professor of the Graduate School
University of California, Berkeley