Dr Molly de Lemos is a former President of Learning Difficulties Australia (LDA), an organization dedicated to assisting students with learning difficulties through effective teaching practices based on scientific research. Her initial training was in psychology, and her post graduate research was in the area of conceptual development, using Piagetian tasks to examine conceptual development in children from different cultural groups (Zulu children in South Africa and Aboriginal children in Australia).
She was an educational researcher with the Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER) for over 30 years, from 1967 to 2001. At ACER she worked on a number of projects relating to assessment of educational achievement, with a focus on children from different language and cultural backgrounds and the early years of schooling. She has also worked on projects relating to educational provisions for students with disabilities and the educational needs of children in care.
She has had an ongoing interest in issues relating to pre-school education, early intervention, and the assessment and identification of children with learning difficulties, and has also worked in the area of psychological assessment, including the adaptation and norming of measures of intelligence, aptitudes and adaptive behaviour. She developed a measure to assess children’s early developmental level, Who Am I, published by ACER in 1999.
Her publications include the 1994 report Schooling for Students with Disabilities, and the 2002 ACER review paper Closing the Gap between Research and Practice: Foundations for the Acquisition of Literacy. She has served on a number of committees and advisory groups relating to assessment and early childhood education, and is currently a member of the Developmental Disorders of Language and Literacy (DDOLL) Network Group, and also the US SpellTalk Listserve.
She was a member of Learning Difficulties Australia (LDA) from 2004 to 2015, holding the office of Secretary from 2004 to 2012 and President from 2013 to 2014. She was the recipient of the LDA Mona Tobias Award in 2012.
On Australia Day 2016, she was appointed a Member (AM) in the Order of Australia “for significant service to education, and to youth, particularly to students with learning difficulties, and as a researcher and author.”
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