Lucyna M. Lach, Associate Professor

Dr. Lucyna Lach is an Associate Professor in the School of Social Work, McGill University and an Associate Member of the Departments of Paediatrics and Neurology/Neurosurgery in the Faculty of Medicine, McGill University. She has a special interest in health-related quality of life and parenting of children with chronic health conditions and disabilities. Dr. Lach is principal investigator for the Quebec subsample of the pan-Canadian study on Outcome Trajectories in Children with Epilepsy, a study examining determinants of health-related quality of life in this population. She is also co-principal investigator of the CIHR Team in PARENTING MATTERS! The Biopsychosocial Context Of Parenting Children With Neurodevelopmental Disorders In Canada, providing leadership and training to four concurrent projects that will contribute to the development and dissemination of knowledge in this area of study. Working closely with parents, clinical and institutional leaders, and policy makers, Dr. Lach hopes to increase awareness of what constitutes parenting, what makes a difference to how parents parent their child, and what difference parenting makes to child outcomes.

Dr. Lach is currently the Associate Dean (Student Affairs) in the Faculty of Arts. She teaches direct practice, theory, and research courses at both undergraduate and graduate levels. She has reviewed grants for the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, Fonds de Recherche sur la Société et la Culture, and numerous peer-reviewed journals. Prior to joining the faculty at McGill University in 2001, she spent 17 years as a social worker at the Hospital For Sick Children in Toronto, Ontario where she worked in the Division of Neurology.

Dr. Lach began her professional career as a front-line social worker working with families and children with Cystic Fibrosis and neuro-developmental diagnoses at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto.
In the mid 1990s, Dr. Lach became involved in an interdisciplinary project with a neuropsychologist and a nurse practitioner from her clinical setting. They set out to produce the first prospective longitudinal study on the cognitive and psychosocial outcomes of children undergoing epilepsy surgery. This project launched her academic career.
Dr. Lach returned to the University of Toronto in 1995 to complete a PhD, which she earned in 2004. When a position came up at McGill in 2001, she was hired while completing her dissertation, teaching applied courses such as Family Assessment, School Social Services and Health and Social Work, and maintaining her responsibilities as co-investigator in funded research.

To students, she hopes to be a motivator, to challenge them to define their distinctive traits as social workers, and to appreciate the scholarship behind their practice. She would like to encourage them to engage in research like she did, to document what they know and do, and to feel proud of the contribution that they make to interdisciplinary teams.

To view Dr. Lach's complete CV, please click here


Ph.D. (University of Toronto) 2004

M.S.W (University of Toronto) 1986

B.A. (University of Toronto) 1984


Associate Dean (Student Affairs)

Nov. 2012 to - present Associate Dean (Student Affairs)

Associate Professor

Jun. 2009 - present Associate Professor

McGill University, Faculty of Arts, School of Social Work              

2004-present Associate Member

McGill University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Pediatrics, Child Behaviour Development Program
McGill University, Faculty of Medicine, Department Neurology and Neurosurgery

Sept. 2001 - May 2009  Assistant Professor

McGill University, Faculty of Arts, School of Social Work

1999-2000 Sessional Lecturer

University of Toronto, Faculty of Social Work

1988-2001 Social Worker

Hospital For Sick Children, Division of Neurology

1986-1988 Social Worker

Hospital For Sick Children, Chest Division


Areas of interest

  • Children with chronic health conditions and disabilities and their families
  • Mixed-method research
  • Caregiver health
  • Health-related quality of life
  • Parenting

Description of current research

Dr. Lach is part of the Centre for Research on Children and Families as well as the Centre de Recherche Interdisciplinaire en Réadaptation du Montréal Métropolitain. She is currently working on several projects related to children with neurodevelopmental disorders (NDD) and their caregivers. Among these, she is investigating the parenting of children with NDD, and is collaborating on projects that involve development and testing of models that address determinants of health-related quality of life in youth with epilepsy and cerebral palsy. In addition, she is part of a team that is documenting and testing a model about the health of caregivers of youth with disabilities using the National Longitudinal Survey of Children and Youth in Canada. Her research is interdisciplinary and favours a mixed-method approach. It involves both the children, their families and surrounding environment.

Recent grants (selected)

2011-2012 Mental Health Commission of Canada


Parenting for the Promotion of Adolescent Mental Health

Monica Ruiz-Casares, Lucyna M. Lach, Cecile Rousseau, & Richard Sullivan.

2009-2012 Canadian Institutes for Health Research (CIHR)


CHIR Team in Parenting Matters! The Biopsychosocial Context of Parenting Children with Neurodevelopmental Disorders in Canada

Peter Rosenbaum (Nominated Principal Investigator), Lucyna M. Lach (Co-Principal Investigator); Dafna Kohen (Co-Principal Investigator); Michael Saini, Rochelle Garner, Rachel Birnbaum, David Nicholas, Jamie Brehaut, Delphine Collin-Vezina, Ted McNeill, David Nicholas, Alison Niccols, & Michael McKenzie and collaborators.

2009-2014 Ministère de la Santé et des Services Sociaux (MSSS)


Outcome Trajectories in Children with Epilepsy:  What Factors are Important?  Quebec Subsamples of the Canadian Study of Paediatric Epielpsy Health Outcomes

Lucyna M. Lach, Michael Shevell, Lionel Carmant, Gabriel Ronen, David Streiner, Peter Rosenbaum, Charles Cunningham, & Michael Boyle.

2008-2013 Canadian Institutes for Health Research (CIHR)


Outcome Trajectories in Children with Epilepsy: What Factors are Important?

Gabriel M. Ronen, David L. Streiner, Peter L. Rosenbaum, Lucyna M Lach, Michael H. Boyle, & Charles E. Cunningham.

2007-2011 Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)


Determinants of Participation and Quality of Life among Adolescents with Cerebral Palsy

Annette Majnemer, Denise Keiko Thomas, Michael Shevell, Lucyna M Lach, Mary Law, Norbert Schmitz, collaborators Allan Clover, Kathleen Montpetit, France Martineau, Michele Gardiner, & Louise Koclas.


Bailey, S., Lach, L.M., & Byford-Richardson, K. Interpersonal interactions and relationships.  In A. Majnemer (Ed.), Measures for Children with Developmental Disability Framed by the ICF-CY.  London, UK:  Mac Keith Press. (in press)

Birnbaum, R., Lach, L.M., Saposnek, D, & Macculloch, R.   (2012).  Co-parenting children  with neurodevelopmental disorders.  In K. Kuehnle & L. Drozd (Eds.), Parenting Plan Evaluations:  Applied Research for the Family Court (pp. 270-329).  New York:  Oxford University Press.

Bogossian, A., & Lach, L.M.  Environmental factors: Support and relationships. In A. Majnemer (Ed.), Measures for Children with Developmental Disability Framed by the ICF-CY.  London, UK:  Mac Keith Press. (in press)

Smith, M.L., et al (2012).  Quality of Life in Young Adults Who Underwent Resective Surgery for Epilepsy in Childhood.  Epilepsia, in press.

Arim, R.G., Garner, R.E., Brehaut, J.C., Lach, L.M., MacKenzie, M.J., Rosenbaum, P., & Kohen, D.E. Contextual influences of parenting behaviours for children with neurodevelopmental disorders:  Results from a Canadian National Survey.  Disability & Rehabilitation, accepted.

Kuo, Y.C. & Lach, L.M. (2012).  Life decisions of Taiwanese women who care for a sibling with Cerebral Palsy.  Health Care for Women International

Garner, R. E., Arim, R. G., Kohen, D. E., Lach, L. M., MacKenzie, M. J., Brehaut J. C., & Rosenbaum, P. L. (2011).  Parenting children with complex health conditions. Child: Care, Health & Development

Brehaut, J.C., Garner, R.E., Miller, A.R., Lach, L.M., Klassen, A.F., Rosenbaum, P.L., & Kohen, D.  (2011).  Changes over time in the health of caregivers of children with health problems:  Growth curve findings from a 10-year Canadian population-based study.  American Journal of Public Health, 101(12), 2308-2316.

Cimino, T., Lach, L.M., Saini, M., & Mechan, K.  (2011).  Abstract quality in a systematic review:  Results from a study of parenting children with chronic health conditions and disabilities.  Journal of Evidence Based Social Work, 8(4), 369-378.

Lach, L.M.  Family Matters.  In: G. Ronen & P. Rosenbaum (Eds.), Health Outcomes in Young People with Neurological and Developmental Conditions.  London:  MacKeith Press.(submitted)

Lach, L.M., Smith, M.L., Elliot, I. Giecko, T., Olds, J., Snyder, T., McCleary, L., Whiting, S., Lowe, A., & Nimigon, J. (2010) Patient-Reported Outcome of Pediatric Epilepsy Surgery: Social Inclusion or Exclusion as Young Adults? Epilepsia, in press

Ronen, G., Streiner, D.L., Verhey, L.J., Lach, L.M., Boyle, M.H., Cunningham, C.E., & Rosenbaum, P.L. (2010). Disease characteristics and psychosocial factors: Explaining the expression of quality of life in childhood epilepsy. Epilepsy & Behavior, accepted.

Nicholas, D.B., Patershuk, C., Donna Koller, D., Bruce-Barrett, C., Lach, L.M., Zlotnik-Shaul, R., & Matlow, A., (2010). Pandemic Planning in Pediatric Care: A Website Policy Review and National Survey Data. Health Policy, accepted.

Hum, K., Smith, M.L., Lach, L.M., & Elliott, I.M. (2010). Self perceptions of social function two years after pediatric epilepsy surgery. Epilepsy & Behavior, in press.

Nicholas, D., Young, N., Lach, L.M., King, G., Reisman, J., Schippel, E., Scott, M., & Sawatzky, B. (2010). Contrasting internet and face-to-face focus groups for children with chronic health conditions: Outcomes and participant experiences. International Journal of Qualitative Methods, accepted.


Back to top