Notre Dame de Namur University Announces the Appointment of Tseh-sien Kelly Vaughn, Ph.D. as Interim Dean for the School of Education

Vaughn brings over 15 years of academic leadership in the optimization and assessment of teaching practices in multi-ethnic classrooms.

Belmont, CA, May 20, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Notre Dame de Namur University (NDNU) Provost & Senior Vice President Greg White, Ph.D. announced the appointment of Dr. Tseh-sien Kelly Vaughn as the Interim Dean for the School of Education.

Dr. Vaughn brings over 15 years of experience in higher education as a NDNU faculty member and program director in the School of Education. In addition to teaching, Kelly is currently the Teaching Performance Assessment (TPA) Director for NDNU. 

“I look forward to working with Kelly on the next chapter in the NDNU’s School of Education,” said White. “Her many years of experience at NDNU as a member of the faculty is a great asset to NDNU as we continue to build the School of Education to ensure that the student experience at NDNU is fulfilling and rewarding and that our students are well prepared to serve today’s multicultural TK-12 populations.”  

Dr. Vaughn has been recognized by the California Council on Teaching Education (CCTE) and California Alliance of Researchers for Equity in Education (CARE-ED) for her initiatives to support and engage in the improvement of the practice of teaching and the assessment of teacher performance. She is active in teacher education initiatives at the state level, serving on state organizations and committees. In collaboration with faculty at many other universities, she has conducted research and presented findings that demonstrate significant racial disparities in a high-stakes assessment (CalTPA) that teaching credential candidates must pass in the State of California. This research is being used to advocate for the removal of the California Teaching Performance Assessment as a requirement for teacher credentialing.

Dr. Vaughn’s research interests include: first generation college youth in the United States; ethnic/culture identity and its connection with academic identity; social networks in educational settings; ethnography; teacher implementation on policy reform; social, emotional, and cultural (SEC) competencies practiced by math educators in middle and high schools; and formative assessment and teacher reflectivity. 

In May 2024, Dr. Vaughn was honored with the Sr. Catharine Julie Cunningham Memorial Teaching and Research Award, which recognizes the faculty member that exemplified the integration of outstanding teaching, research, while emulating the Hallmarks of a Notre Dame Learning Community in her life and work. 

Kelly Vaughn received a B.A. in East Asian Languages and Cultures (Chinese) and M.Ed. in Education from UCLA, a M.A. in Asian American Studies at SF State University, and her Ph.D. in Social Sciences, Policy and Educational Practice (SSPEP) from the Graduate School of Education at Stanford University.  

About Notre Dame de Namur University
Notre Dame de Namur University (NDNU) is a Catholic, not-for-profit, coeducational institution serving adult learners from diverse backgrounds. Established in 1851 by the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur, NDNU is the third-oldest college in California and the first authorized to grant women a baccalaureate degree. The university is WSCUC accredited and offers master’s in business, education, and psychology, as well as undergraduate degree completion programs in business administration and psychology, along with teacher credential programs. NDNU maintains a strong commitment to academic excellence, social justice, and community engagement. For more information, visit

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