Undergraduate Teacher Education

Jean Whitney Ph.D.

Professor, Teacher Education
Jean Whitney

Office Location

218D Bailey Hall


(207) 780-5472

Academic Degrees

  • Ph.D., University of Wisconsin - Madison
  • M.A., University of Pittsburgh - Pennsylvania
  • B.A., Carleton College - Northfield, Minnesota


Jean Whitney is a faculty member in the Department of Teaching and Learning. Dr. Whitney’s current scholarship focuses on critical factors that support students and facilitate their advance to majors and graduate school in STEM fields, the influence of learning communities on students’ individual and collective social capital, and pre-service teachers’ emerging professional identities.  Previous research has involved capturing the voices, impressions, and first-hand accounts of educational reform from a diverse array of students and teachers in today’s schools. Prior to her work at USM, Jean coordinated a doctoral level program in educational leadership education and disability policy at UMASS Boston. In 1998 she was awarded a Switzer Fellowship from the National Institute for Disability and Rehabilitation Research, which funded research on the school to adult life experiences of students with and without disabilities in a Massachusetts High School.

 Dr. Whitney has held leadership roles at USM including Director of Educator Preparation and Associate Professor of Teacher Education at the University of Southern Maine from 2012-2015. From 2007-2013, Dr. Whitney was Co-PI on EAST-2, an NSF funded Alliance grant that supports students with disabilities transition from high school to STEM majors and STEM fields. Dr. Whitney teaches courses on research methods, action research, and special and general education methods.

Areas of Expertise

  • Qualitative and Quantitative Research Methods
  • Program Evaluation
  • Accreditation

Research Interests

  • Development of Social Capital
  • Collaborative teaching and learning in STEM fields
  • Inclusionary practice
  • Teacher Education