Angela Cavenaghi Lessa is full professor at the Universidade Católica de São Paulo, lecturer at the English Language Undergraduate Course and at the Post Graduate Program in Applied Linguistics (LAEL). She was Head of the English Department, Deputy Director of the Human Sciences Centre and is now the Vice-Coordinator of the Post Graduate Program in LAEL. She is the leader of the research group Inclusão Linguistica em Cenários de Atividades Educacionais (ILCAE) which carries on researches on the area of Special Needs Education (SNE), Violence in School and Critical Literacy.
Her present SNE research projects grounded on the Social Historical and Cultural Theory aim at discussing new theoretical and methodological perspectives of Vygotsky´s work, with special emphasis on Defectolofy. Taking as a starting point the concept that language, or any sign system shared by a community, is a sine qua non psychological tool in the process of learning and development, she has been working with her master and doctorate students on the lines of development of (1) deaf children who use as first language the Brazilian Sign Language and are learning Portuguese as a second language and (b) blind students who are learning English as a foreign language. She is also a Visiting Fellow for the Education, Well Being and the Emergent Economies of Brazil, Russia and South Africa project (ESRC RES 075250004), Editor of CLARITAS – Revista do Departamento de Inglês and member of the Editorial Board of the Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties – Routhledge and of COMFIL Journal. She was one of the evaluators of Project AMA which was carried out by a Brazilian NGO (that worked with Autistic children) with the support and supervision of a Swedish research institution. She works as a consultant for a publishing house that produces course books for Special Need Students and is one of the coordinators of a series of books also aimed at the teaching of special need children.