Laureate Professor Marilyn Fleer named as Sir John Monash Distinguished Professor
The Sector > Quality > In The Field > Laureate Professor Marilyn Fleer named as Sir John Monash Distinguished Professor

Laureate Professor Marilyn Fleer named as Sir John Monash Distinguished Professor

by Freya Lucas

May 01, 2023

Laureate Professor Marilyn Fleer, best known in early childhood education and care (ECEC) circles for her Conceptual PlayWorlds work, has been named as a Sir John Monash Distinguished Professor,  the most prestigious title that can be conferred on serving professors of Monash University.


“The Sir John Monash Distinguished Professor title is awarded only to professors of exceptional distinction who have made high-level and sustained contributions to their discipline, the University and the community,” Monash President and Vice-Chancellor Professor Margaret Gardner AC said.


Professor Fleer is the Foundation Chair in Early Childhood Education and Development in the Faculty of Education and founder of the Conceptual PlayLab programmatic study. 


As a champion of teaching and learning in the area of early childhood education, Professor Fleer has been instrumental in leading the successful development of the Faculty’s early childhood teaching program.


In her capacity as an accomplished mentor, Professor Fleer has guided a generation of early childhood academics, with her mentees performing senior teaching and research positions in Australia and internationally. In 2018, she was awarded the prestigious Australian Research Council (ARC) Kathleen Fitzpatrick Laureate Fellowship, designed to mentor early career women researchers, and was notably the ARC’s first Laureate Professor in early childhood education.


Professor Fleer has led numerous key research projects, with her work attracting more than $10 million in grants. She has published widely in international journals and founded the International Journal of Research in Early Childhood, an open access journal designed to support scholarship in early education research. Her work has also informed policy and practice in Australia and abroad.


In recognition of her distinguished contributions to early childhood education, Professor Fleer was appointed a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in Australia in 2021. In 2022, she was selected for the Victorian Honour Roll of Women in recognition of her celebrated work in shifting understanding of how young children think and learn.


Professor Lynette Russell AM was conferred at the same time as Professor Fleer, with the women joining fellow current Sir John Monash Distinguished Professors, including Professor Bill Charman AO, Professor Jamie Cooper AO, Professor Kim Cornish, Professor Doug MacFarlane, Professor John McNeil AO, Professor Christina Mitchell AO and Professor Aibing Yu.


The Sector extends its congratulations to Professor Fleer and Professor Russell AM on this prestigious honour. 

Download The Sector's new App!

ECEC news, jobs, events and more anytime, anywhere.

Download App on Apple App Store Button Download App on Google Play Store Button