Dr. Jenna Abetz is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Communication. She teaches courses in interpersonal communication, narrative, and identity. At the graduate level, she teaches identity and impression management, focusing on how individuals, groups, and organizations attempt to manage the ways they are perceived by others.
Her research focuses on communication within and about interpersonal and family relationships, and she has won 6 awards for her scholarship. She has published more than 20 journal articles and book chapters in outlets including Western Journal of Communication, Women’s Studies in Communication, Communication, Culture & Critique, and the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships. Informed by qualitative and critical approaches to communication, she explores how individuals construct, make sense of, and negotiate identity during periods of relational transition or contestation. This work has included analyses of emerging adulthood, motherhood, parent-child estrangement, divorce, dual-career couples, and financial uncertainty. She seeks to conduct socially-meaningful, translational work that has practical applications for interpersonal relationships.