Graduate Research Overview

Graduate students in the Department of Communication participate in research in a variety of ways. In addition to developing their own projects, they collaborate with faculty, with other graduate students, and with undergraduate students as well. Here is a sample of current research projects in the department:


Current Dissertation Projects, 2013-14

Yannick Atouba Ada, " How does interorganizational collaboration work? Examining interorganizational collaboration among human services NGOs." Advisor: Michelle Shumate.

Ryan Blum, "Playing at Perfection: Discourses of Twentieth Century American Utopias." Advisor: James Hay.

George Boone, "Technological Contexts and the Remediation of Fantasy Narratives in Role Playing Games." Advisor: Ned O'Gorman.

Elizabeth Carlson, "Conflict Management in Multi-Agency Disaster Response Exercises: Communicating 'Confrontation' in Inter-Organizational Collaborative Teams." Advisor: John Lammers.

Courtney Caudle, "Jacqueline Kennedy and the Politics of Popularity." Advisor: John Murphy.

Katherine Cooper, "Exploring Stakeholder Participation in Nonprofit Collaboration." Advisor: Michelle Shumate.

Melissa Dobosh, "Perceptions of Task and Friendship Relationships in Social Groups: Exploring the Effects of Cognitive Complexity on Network Accuracy, Centrality, and Differentiation." Advisor: Scott Poole.

Kristin Drogos, "The Relationship between Social Network Sites and Adolescent Identity Development." Advisor: Barbara Wilson.

Gwen Costa Jacobsohn, "The Influence of Pediatric Communication in the Prevention and Treatment of Childhood Obesity: A Relationship-Centered Approach." Advisor: Kristen Harrison.

Jermaine Martinez, "Radical Sadness: The Rhetorical Use of Memoirs about Depression in an Age of Authenticity." Advisor: Ned O'Gorman.

Jillian Klean Zwilling, “‘Caught in a Web of Indifference': U.S. Legislation, Birth Control, and the Rhetoric of the Lysol Douche.” Advisor: Cara Finnegan.

Complete List of All Dissertations Completed in the Department of Communication, 1951-2012



Some Current Research Projects Featuring Student-Faculty Collaboration

"A Contingency Theory of Organizational Response to Paradoxical Requirements: A Study of Emergency Response Organizations." Scott Poole, John Lammers, Elizabeth Carlson (doctoral student), & Natalie White Lambert (doctoral student). Funded by the National Science Foundation.

"Multiple Interpretations of Institutional Messages: A Case Study of the Institutionalization of MABAS." John Lammers & Natalie White Lambert (doctoral student).

"Communication Between Emergency Department Physicians and Specialists." Natalie White Lambert (doctoral student) and John Lammers.

"GroupScope: Instrumenting Research on Interaction Networks in Complex Social Contexts." Scott Poole, Melissa Dobosh (doctoral student), Natalie White Lambert, & Stacy Kim (M.A., 2013). Funded by the National Science Foundation.

"Market Maker, an online business-to-business web application." Scott Poole & Kristen Guth (M.A., 2012). Funded partly by I-CHASS.

"Bridging the Divide: Exploring Native Approaches to Science Through Analysis of Implementation of a Complex Information Technology in Alaska Native Communities." Scott Poole & Kate Cooper (doctoral student). Funded by the National Science Foundation.

"Research on the Process of Development of Virtual Research Environments." Scott Poole & Kate Cooper (doctoral student). Funded by the National Science Foundation.

"Virtual Worlds Exploratorium." Scott Poole & Andy Pilny (doctoral student). Funded by Bolt, Baranek, and Newman and the Army Research Laboratory Network Science Collaborative Technology Alliance.

“High School Students' Conversations with Friends about Substance Use.” Jennifer Kam. Ashley Middleton (Ph.D., 2012), Kimberly Pusateri (doctoral student), Nathan McCullough (M.A., 2013), & Lance Keene (School of Social Work), research assistants. Undergraduate research assistants Taylor Behrman, Regina Hinders, Taylor Schulz, and Anna Tanaglia. Funded by the Campus Research Board.

“Communication and Information Challenges for Adult Children Coping with a Parent's Lung Cancer.” Ashley Middleton (Ph.D., 2012), Anne Stone (Ph.D., 2011), Sylvia Mikucki-Enyart (Ph.D., 2012), John Caughlin, & Laura Brown (M.A., 2010). Funded by the Campus Research Board.

“In Close Relationships, It’s Both Online and Face-to-Face Communication, Not Online versus Face-to-Face Communication.” John Caughlin & Liesel Sharabi (doctoral student).

“Measuring Interpersonal Interaction.” John Caughlin & Erin Basinger (doctoral student).

"Media Patterns and Preferences in Different Stages of Romantic Relationship Development." John Caughlin & Liesel Sharabi (doctoral student).

“Interpersonal Interaction in Primetime Television.” David Tewksbury, Julius Riles (doctoral student), Kira Varava (doctoral student), Andrew Pilny (doctoral student), Eric Weimer (undergraduate student), & Sage Markgraf (undergraduate student).

"Framing On-line Cancer News: Influences on Perceptions about Credibility, Culpability and Risk." David Tewksbury, Julius Riles (doctoral student), & Eric Weimer (undergraduate student).

“Relational Turbulence Among Couples With Depression.” Leanne Knobloch, Amy Delaney (doctoral student), Liesel Sharabi (doctoral student), & Samantha Surrane (M.A., 2012). Funded by the Campus Research Board.

"Localizing Histories of Collaboration between English and Speech: The Verbal Expression Course at the University of Illinois." Cara Finnegan & Marissa Lowe (doctoral student).

"Race, the Visual Presidency, and White House Art." Cara Finnegan & Anita Mixon (doctoral student).

"Nurses' Use of Technology: Implications for Nurse-Patient Communication." Marian Huhman, Heather Zupancic (M.A., 2013), & Ashley Snick (M.A., 2013). Funded by the Campus Research Board.

"A Comparison of Direct Mail Organ Donation campaign." Brian Quick & Nicole LaVoie (doctoral student). Funded by Health and Human Services Division of Transplantation.

"A Direct Mail Organ Donation campaign Targeting Illinois, Iowa, and New York 50-55-Year Olds." Brian Quick and Natalie White Lambert (doctoral student). Funded by Health and Human Services Division of Transplantation.

"Baseball and Steroids." Brian Quick and Natalie White Lambert (doctoral student).

"Is Psychological Reactance an Outcome of Fear-Control Processing?" Brian Quick, Nicole LaVoie (doctoral student), Macarena Pena Y Lilo (doctoral student), & Natalie White Lambert (doctoral student).

"The Rhetoric of Video Games." Ned O'Gorman and George Boone (doctoral student).

“Interorganizational INGO Network Evolution.” Yannick Atouba (doctoral student) and Michelle Shumate.



Mentoring Through Research and Practice: Undergraduate Research Opportunities

MTRP is a program that pairs undergraduate students with graduate students to provide undergraduates with hands-on, practical research experience and the opportunity to develop a close, working relationship with a graduate student mentor. For more information on the program and to see examples of recent grad/undergrad research collaborations, see the Undergraduate Research Opportunities page.