Jane McEldowney Jensen
Associate Professor, Director of Graduate Studies
An anthropologist by training, Dr. Jensen conducts research on cultural values for post-
compulsory education and ways that college students reflexively negotiate academic
capital. Dr. Jensen joined the EPE faculty in 1997 from Indiana University with a PhD in
Anthropology and Higher Education. Her research includes the study of student
transitions to and through college, credentialing, and policies regarding student success.
Current projects focus on the ways in which students understand and access the
undergraduate curriculum and co-curriculum. Dr. Jensen holds a M.S. in College
Student Personnel Administration from Indiana University and a B.A. in Art History from
the University of Virginia.
Winner of the 2011 Provost’s Award for Teaching, at the University of Kentucky Dr.
Jensen teaches courses in qualitative field studies, comparative higher education,
sociology of higher education, student services, and college student development. As a
member of the Lewis Honors College faculty, she and her colleague Rae Goodwin teach
a course on creativity and cosmopolitanism called Navigating the Grand Tour. Dr.
Jensen has served the University of Kentucky as a member of the University Senate
Council, faculty coordinator for First Year Initiatives, Interim Asst Provost for
Undergraduate Education-Transformative Learning, and Interim-Faculty Director of the
Office for Undergraduate Research.
Dr. Jensen is co-author of a text for first year college students, Piecing it Together: A
Guide to Student Academic Success, and an ethnographic study, Post-Secondary
Education on the Edge: Self-Improvement and Community Development in a Cape
Breton Coal Town, published by Peter Lang.
Jane is a founding board member of CivicLex.org whose mission is to nurture and sustain a thriving, diverse and beautiful Lexington that talented and creative people are happy to call home.
Research categories: Higher Education, Secondary Education, Evaluation, Research Methods