Dr Fiona Simmons

School of Psychology

Dr. Simmons’s research focuses on the development of children’s academic skills. This includes the development of reading, writing and mathematics. She has a particular focus on the factors that influence the development of early number skills. Recent projects have examined how magnitude is represented and processed, the extent that fundamental magnitude processing skills support the development of formal mathematics and the relationships between working memory and different number skills.
Dr Simmons is currently leading the Liverpool Early Number Skills project (LENS). This two-year longitudinal project is examining the factors that support the development of numeracy skills in young children. It is funded by a grant from the Nuffield Foundation. More information about the project can be found at: https://www.ljmu.ac.uk/microsites/liverpool-early-number-skills-project

Teaching activities

First year: Learning, Cognitive and Biological Psychology (4104PSYSCI, Module leader), Research Methods and Statistics in Psychology I (4102PSYSCI)

Final year: Psychology in Education (6013PSYSCI), Cognitive Neuroscience (6011PSYSCI), Psychology Dissertation (6000PSYSCI)

Degrees

2008, Liverpool John Moores University, United Kingdom, Postgraduate Certificate in Teaching and Learning (Higher Education)
2003, University of Leeds, United Kingdom, Postgraduate Certificate in Education (Primary Education)
2002, University of Hull, United Kingdom, PhD
1999, University of Hull, United Kingdom, BSc Special Psycholgy

Highlighted publications

Soto-Calvo E, Simmons FR, Adams AM, Francis HN, Giofré D. 2019. Pre-Schoolers’ Home Numeracy and Home Literacy Experiences and Their Relationships with Early Number Skills: Evidence from a UK Study Early Education and Development, DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Simmons FR, Gallagher-Mitchell T, Ogden R. 2019. Response-irrelevant number, duration and extent information triggers the SQARC effect: Evidence from an implicit paradigm Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 72 :2261-2271 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Soto Calvo E, Simmons FR, Willis C, Adams A. 2015. Identifying the cognitive predictors of early counting and calculation skills: Evidence from a longitudinal study. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 140 :16-37 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Adams A, Simmons FR, Willis C. 2015. Exploring relationships between working memory and writing: individual differences associated with gender Learning and Individual Differences, 40 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Simmons FR, Willis C, Adams A. 2012. Different components of working memory have different relationships with different mathematical skills Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 111 :139-155 DOI Author Url

Journal article

Simmons FR, Soto-Calvo E, Adams A-M, Francis HN, Patel H, Giofré D. 2022. Examining Associations Between Preschool Home Literacy Experiences, Language, Cognition And Early Word Reading: Evidence From A Longitudinal Study Early Education and Development, DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Adams A-M, Soto-Calvo E, Francis HN, Patel H, Hartley C, Giofré D, Simmons FR. 2021. Characteristics of the preschool home literacy environment which predict writing skills at school Reading and Writing, DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Seddon AL, Law AS, Adams AM, Simmons FR. 2021. Individual differences in media multitasking ability: the importance of cognitive flexibility Computers in Human Behavior Reports, DOI Publisher Url Public Url

Ogden RS, Simmons FR, Wearden JH. 2020. Verbal estimation of the magnitude of time, number, and length Psychological Research, 85 :3048-3060 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Soto Calvo E, Simmons FR, Adams AM, Francis H, Patel H, Giofre D. 2020. Identifying the preschool home learning experiences that predict early number skills: Evidence from a longitudinal study Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 53 :314-328 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Soto-Calvo E, Simmons FR, Adams AM, Francis HN, Giofré D. 2019. Pre-Schoolers’ Home Numeracy and Home Literacy Experiences and Their Relationships with Early Number Skills: Evidence from a UK Study Early Education and Development, DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Simmons FR, Gallagher-Mitchell T, Ogden R. 2019. Response-irrelevant number, duration and extent information triggers the SQARC effect: Evidence from an implicit paradigm Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 72 :2261-2271 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Seddon AL, Law AS, Adams AM, Simmons FR. 2018. Exploring the relationship between executive functions and self-reported media-multitasking in young adults Journal of Cognitive Psychology, 30 :728-742 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Adams A, Simmons FR. 2018. Exploring individual and gender differences in early writing performance Reading and Writing, DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Ogden R, Samuels M, Simmons F, Wearden J, Montgomery C. 2017. The differential recruitment of executive functions during time, number and length perception: An individual differences approach. Jones L. The Quarterly journal of experimental psychology, DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Soto Calvo E, Simmons FR, Willis C, Adams A. 2015. Identifying the cognitive predictors of early counting and calculation skills: Evidence from a longitudinal study. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 140 :16-37 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Adams A, Simmons FR, Willis C. 2015. Exploring relationships between working memory and writing: individual differences associated with gender Learning and Individual Differences, 40 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Simmons FR, Willis C, Adams A. 2012. Different components of working memory have different relationships with different mathematical skills Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 111 :139-155 DOI Author Url

Adams A-M, Simmons FR, Willis C, Porter S. 2011. The impact of development of verbal recoding on children's early writing skills British Journal of Educational Psychology, DOI Author Url

Simmons FR. 2011. Mathematics difficulties: Current research and future directions Dyslexia Review, 22 :18-19

Adams A-M, Simmons F, Willis C, Pawling R. 2010. Undergraduate students' ability to revise text effectively: relationships with topic knowledge and working memory JOURNAL OF RESEARCH IN READING, 33 :54-76 DOI Author Url

Singleton C, Horne J, Simmons FR. 2009. Computerised screening for dyslexia in adults. Journal of Research in Reading, 32 :137-152 DOI Author Url

Simmons FR, Singleton C. 2009. The mathematical strengths and weaknesses of children with dyslexia. Journal of Research in Special Educational Needs, 9 :154-163 DOI

Simmons FR, Singleton C. 2008. Do weak phonological representations impact on arithmetic development? A review of research into arithmetic and dyslexia. Dyslexia, 14 :77-94 DOI Author Url

Simmons FR. 2008. The mathematical profiles of dyslexic children: Implications for practitioners. Dyslexia Review, 19 :8-11

Simmons F, Singleton C, Horne J. 2008. Brief report - Phonological awareness and visual-spatial sketchpad functioning predict early arithmetic attainment: Evidence from a longitudinal study EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF COGNITIVE PSYCHOLOGY, 20 :711-722 DOI Author Url

Simmons FR, Singleton C. 2006. The mental and written arithmetic abilities of adults with dyslexia. Dyslexia, 12 :96-114 DOI Author Url

Singleton C, Simmons F. 2001. An evaluation of Wordshark in the classroom British Journal of Educational Technology, 32 :317-330 DOI

Simmons F, Singleton C. 2000. The Reading Comprehension Abilities of Dyslexic Students in Higher Education Dyslexia, 6 :178-192 DOI Author Url

Dataset

Simmons F, Adams AM, Soto Calvo E. 2021. The Primary Home Learning Environment DOI Public Url

Seddon A, Law A, Adams AM, Simmons F. 2020. Individual differences in media multitasking ability: the importance of cognitive flexibility DOI Public Url

Conference publication

Soto Calvo E, Simmons FR, Willis C, Adams A. Challenges to a specific role for quantity representations in mathematics development Cognitive Science Arena Conference (III Edition)

Highlighted activities

Research Grants Awarded:

Nuffield Foundation, Understanding the influence of the preschool home learning environment on early mathematics and literacy attainment, Dr Anne-Marie Adams, Grant value (£): 168,191, Duration of research project: 2 years. 2019

Professional activities

Research Grants Awarded:

Nuffield Foundation, Understanding the influence of the preschool home learning environment on early mathematics and literacy attainment, Dr Anne-Marie Adams, Grant value (£): 168,191, Duration of research project: 2 years. 2019

Nuffield Foundation, Understanding the influence of cognition and the home learning environment on early number skills [Invited full application following the submission of an outline], Anne-Marie Adams LJMU, Cath Willis LJMU, Grant value (£): 151,609, Duration of research project: 2 years 2 months. 2016

External PGR examinations performed:

University College Dublin, PhD, Lost for words and lost for numbers: An investigation of specific learning difficulties in reading and mathematics. 2016

External collaboration:

Edge Hill University, Tom Mitchell. 2014

Other invited event:

5th National Conference:Dyscalculia and maths learning difficulties, London, Invited speaker on dyslexia and mathematics difficulties. Conference for a range of delegates including specialist advisory teachers and educational psychologists.. 2013

Dyslexia Action Guild Symposium, University of Westiminster, Invited keynote speaker Conference for specialist teachers of children with SPLD.. 2010

Dyslexia Action Psychology Conference, University of York, Invited speaker on dyslexia and dyscalculia. Conference for Dyslexia Action's consulting psychologists.. 2010

Membership of professional bodies:

Chartered Psychologist, British Psychological Society.

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