Melinda Leko

Professor

leko@wisc.edu

(608) 263-5751

440 Education Building

1000 Bascom Mall

Madison, WI 53706

Leko, Melinda

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Melinda Leko is a Professor in the Department of Rehabilitation Psychology and Special Education. She also worked at the University of Kansas from 2014-2017. She earned her PhD from the University of Florida in 2008. Her areas of research focus on (a) educator preparation to promote and support inclusive and equitable educational experiences for learners with disabilities, (b) educators’ implementation of evidence-based practices (EBPs), and (c) literacy instruction for students with disabilities. She has been awarded extramural funding from multiple funding agencies including the U.S. Department of Education and the Office of Special Education Programs. She is also a staff member with the Office of Special Education Programs CEEDAR Center. She is the co-editor of the journal Teacher Education and Special Education.

Education

  • PhD Special Education, The University of Florida , 2008
  • M Ed Elementary Education, The University of Florida, 2002
  • BA Criminology, The University of Florida, 2001
  • BS Psychology, The University of Florida, 2001

Select Publications

  • Brownell, M. T., Benedict, A., Leko, M. M., Peyton, D., & Pua, D. (2019). A continuum of pedagogies for preparing teachers to use high leverage practices (HLPs). Remedial and Special Education, 40, 338-355.
  • Leko, M. M., Alzahrani, T., & Handy, T. (2019). Literacy instruction for adolescents with learning disabilities: Examining teacher practice and preparation. Learning Disabilities: A Contemporary Journal, 17, 117-138.
  • Leko, M. M., Chiu, M. M., & Roberts, C. A. (2018). Individual and contextual factors related to secondary special education teachers’ reading instructional practices. The Journal of Special Education, 51, 236-250.
  • Leko, M. M., (2016). Word Study in the Inclusive Secondary Classroom: Supporting Struggling Readers and Students with Disabilities. In New York: Teachers College Press.
  • Leko, M. M., Brownell, M. T., Sindelar, P. T., & Kiely, M. T. (2015). Envisioning the future of special education personnel preparation in a standards-based era. Exceptional Children, 82, 25-43.
  • Leko, M. M., (2015). To adapt or not to adapt: Navigating an implementation conundrum. TEACHING Exceptional Children, 48, 80-85.
  • Leko, M. M., Roberts, C. A., & Pek, Y. (2015). A theory of secondary teachers’ adaptations when implementing a reading intervention program. The Journal of Special Education, 49, 168-178.
  • Leko, M. M., Kulkarni, S., Lin, M., & Smith, S. (2015). Delving deeper into the construct of preservice teachers’ beliefs about reading instruction for students with disabilities. Teacher Education and Special Education, 38, 186-206.
  • Leko, M. M., (2014). The value of qualitative methods in social validity research. Remedial and Special Education, 35, 275-286.
  • Leko, M. M., & Brownell, M. T. (2011). Special education preservice teachers' appropriation of pedagogical tools for teaching reading. Exceptional Children, 77, 229-251.

Select Presentations

  • Wilkerson, K. L., Leko, M. M., & Sikora, E. (2019, November). Examining emergency certified special educators: A statewide analysis. Paper presented at the 2019 annual meeting of the Teacher Education Division of the Council for Exceptional Children, New Orleans, LA.
  • Leko, M. M., Brownell, M. T., Sindelar, P. T., Kiely, M. T., & Benedict, A. (2015, November). Envisioning the future of special education personnel preparation in a standards based era. Paper presented at the Teacher Education Division (TED) annual meeting, Phoenix, AZ.
  • Knackstedt, K., Leko, M. M., & Siuty, M. (2015, November). Pedagogical attributes of teacher preparation that lead to high teacher self-efficacy. Paper presented at the Teacher Education Division (TED) annual meeting, Phoenix, AZ.
  • Siuty, M., Leko, M. M., & Knackstedt, K. (2015, November). Unraveling the complexities of teacher decision-making: What teacher educators should know and do. Poster presented at the Teacher Education Division (TED) annual meeting, Phoenix, AZ.
  • Leko, M. M. (2015, November). Science teacher education for students with disabilities: Charting a course towards effective practice. Paper presented at the Teacher Education Division (TED) of the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) annual meeting, Phoenix, AZ.
  • Leko, M. M., Siuty, M., & Knackstedt, K. (2015, October). Secondary special educator reading preparation: Researching what, why, and how. Paper presented at the Council on Learning Disabilities (CLD) annual meeting, Las Vegas, NV.
  • Leko, M. M. (2015, January). Examining secondary special education teachers’ reading instructional practices. Paper presented at the KU School of Education Research Conference, Lawrence, KS.
  • Leko, M. M. (2013, November). Implementation science and teacher quality: What is the relationship?. Paper presented at the Teacher Education Division (TED) annual meeting, Fort Lauderdale, FL.
  • Leko, M. M., Brownell, M., Kiely, M., Osipova, A., Dingle, M., & Mundy, C. (2010, May). Maximizing learning opportunities in a special education professional development project. Paper presented at the American Educational Research Association (AERA), Denver, CO.

Select Awards and Honors

  • Cooper Lectureship, University of Virginia, 2019
  • Division of Student Housing Honored Instructor Award, University of Madison, 2012