Jeanne Shea – Anthropology

Professor, Department of Anthropology, College of Arts and Sciences, University of Vermont; Director, Health and Society Program;  Director, Global Health Concentration in Anthropology








Professor Jeanne Shea is a cultural anthropologist who specializes in medical and psychological anthropology and social gerontology. For her research, Professor Shea uses a variety of qualitative research methods, including participant observation, in-depth interviews, document analysis, and mixed methods survey research. She has conducted research in northeastern and southeastern China and in Montréal and Vermont. Her current research explores the cultural meanings and social dynamics of spousal caregiving, senior volunteering, and community-based resources in support of aging in place in China. Earlier she conducted research on Chinese women’s experiences of menopause and midlife aging in later life in Beijing, on Chinese immigrants’ experiences in Montréal, and on her own experience of family life and childrearing in Shanghai. In Vermont, she has collaborated with colleagues and students on a variety of projects, including studies of the Wake Robin Life Care Community, Vermont’s Supports and Services at Home (SASH) Program, and UVM’s Retired Faculty and Administrative Officers Program.

Qualitative research can answer research questions that quantitative research cannot, and vice versa. You need to match your methods to your research questions. Qualitative research is critical for answering questions about complex human experiences, what things mean to people, how things unfold in social context, and differences between what people say, do, and say they do.

Link to Professor Shea’s UVM homepage:

Link to Professor Shea’s page: