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Kathleen O’Connor

Consultant, Evaluation and Learning

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Leveraging Data to Drive Learning and Actionable Strategies

Throughout her career, Kathleen has demonstrated an exceptional talent for connecting with people and bringing strong relationship-building skills (along with natural curiosity and research skills) to her evaluation work, which drives social impact. Her multifaceted background is steeped in social science, including extensive research and evaluation in the fields of education, youth development and environmental and climate change education.  At TCC Group, Kathleen applies her unique skills to her work with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, American Medical Association Center for Health Equity, and the Children’s Defense Fund, among others.

Her mission is to empower these organizations to identify the impacts and outcomes they are working to achieve, and collaborate with them to interpret findings and develop actionable strategies and solutions. Kathleen also supports her clients in building their own organizational evaluation capacity and culture of learning.

As a research associate at the Stanford University Social Ecology Lab Kathleen collaborated on research projects related to climate change education, communication and action. She helped synthesize knowledge from literature, stakeholder interviews and listening sessions, which informed the development of a new school of climate and sustainability.  At NatureBridge, she began as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow, conducting research on how residential environmental education programs support social and emotional learning.  After advancing to Director of Research and Evaluation, Kathleen developed evaluation plans and conducted training for education leadership.  While she was fulfilled as a social science researcher, she is excited to see the learning and evaluation work she is doing at TCC Group result in immediate changes within the organizations we work with and in the broader communities they serve.

  • Stanford University
    • PhD, Education (Development and Psychological Sciences)
  • Northwestern University
    • BA, Environmental Science
Additional Works
  • Ardoin, N.M., DiGiano, M.L., O’Connor, K., & Podkul, T.E. (2016). The development of trust in residential environmental education programs. Environmental Education Research, 23(9), 1335-1355.
  • Nasir, N.S., McKinney de Royston, M., O’Connor, K., & Wischnia, S. (2016). Knowing about racial stereotypes versus believing them. Urban Education, 52(4), 491-524.
  • Ardoin, N.M., DiGiano, M.L., O’Connor, K., & Holthius, N. (2015). Using online narratives to explore participant experiences in a residential environmental education program. Children’s Geographies, 14(3), 263-281.
  • Ardoin, N.M., Biedenweg, K., & O’Connor, K. (2015). Evaluation in residential environmental education: An applied literature review of intermediary outcomes. Applied Environmental Educa0on & Communication, 14(1), 43-56.
  • Ardoin, N.M., DiGiano, M.L., Bundy, J., Chang, S., Holthius, N., & O’Connor, K. (2014). Using digital photography and journaling to measure interest in field-based environmental education programs. Studies in Educational Evaluation, 41, 68-76.
  • Cvencek, D., Nasir, N.S., O’Connor, K., Wischnia, S., & Meltzoff, A.N. (2014). The development of math-race stereotypes: “They say Chinese people are the best at math.” Journal of Research on Adolescence, 25(4), 630-637.
  • Mercier, E.M., Barron, B., & O’Connor, K.M. (2006). Images of self and others as computer users: The role of gender and experience. Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 22, 235-248.
  • Steele, T., Oishi, L., O’Connor, K., & Silva, D.M. (2009). Learning World Languages and Cultures in California: A Stimulus for Academic and Economic Success. Stanford, CA: California Foreign Language Project
  • Nasir, N.S., Atukpawu, G., O’Connor, K., Davis, M., Wischnia, S., & Tsang, J. (2009). Wrestling with the Legacy of Stereotypes: Being African American in Math Class. In D. Martin (Ed.) Mathematics Teaching, Learning, and Liberation in African-American Contexts, NY: Routledge.




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