Robert Lado (1915-1995) was a linguist best known for his Contrastive Analysis Hypothesis of the 1960's which was considered to be one of the first theories in the new field of Second Language Acquisition. However, with its inability to predict errors, this behaviorist hypothesis was soon replaced with those based on rationalist Universal Grammar theories.

Lado was born into a Catholic family in the US and raised in Spain. He returned to the US as an adult and received his PhD from University of Michigan. In 1960 he founded the Georgetown University School of Languages and Linguistics and served as Dean until 1973.

He then was a professor in Wheeling, West Virginia at the Wheeling Jesuit University where he founded the Wheeling Jesuit University's English Language Institute.

In 1988, he started a business called the Lado International College in Tokyo. Soon after in the 1990's the business was found violating Japan's Social Insurance Laws whereupon a teachers union was formed.

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