I just looked up the syllable description of the words linear and nuclear. On that website, it says linear has 3 syllables and nuclear 2. This is despite the 'ear' of both words being pronounced the same (and the stresses being the same, for instance, I checked in the CMU dictionary).
Is there a reason for this? Is the website wrong?
In general I feel I don't know how to split words in syllables when they contain 'ear'. For instance for linear and nuclear I wouldn't know what to say (although I would have bet both had 3 syllables). On the other hand in words like 'rearrange' it is pretty clear (clear, another of our friends) that the e and the a should belong to different syllables.