Molly F. Collins, EdD
Department of Teaching and Learning, Vanderbilt University
Molly F. Collins is a faculty member in the Department of Teaching and Learning at Peabody College, Vanderbilt University. She holds a doctorate in curriculum and instruction from Boston University, a master’s degree in applied linguistics from Kansas University, a master’s degree in early childhood education from Boston University, and a bachelor’s degree in human development from Vanderbilt University. Her research examines language and comprehension development in young children, particularly children from impoverished backgrounds, and factors that impact the quality of teachers’ instruction. She has extensive experience researching preschoolers’ vocabulary acquisition and inferential comprehension during story reading, providing ongoing professional development to educators within and outside the US, and developing and leading intervention studies. She was the principal investigator (PI) for two simultaneous Early Reading First projects; has directed two IES development projects on vocabulary learning from reading and play; was PI for a longitudinal intervention examining preschoolers’ sophisticated vocabulary learning, inferential thinking, and early reading skills; and was the project director for the Vanderbilt/Abu Dhabi model preschool collaboration. A former recipient of ILA’s Outstanding Dissertation Award, she has authored several articles on children’s vocabulary and comprehension in research and practitioner journals, including Reading Research Quarterly, Early Childhood Research Quarterly, The Reading Teacher, and Young Children. She has co-authored a book on young children’s literacy development. At Vanderbilt, Dr. Collins is leading two projects on preschoolers’ vocabulary and thinking and teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in language acquisition, linguistics, and second language learning. She is a member of AERA, ILA, LRA, and SRCD.