CHRC Holds Workshop on Meta-Analysis of Communication Research

Photo: CHRC holds the Workshop on Meta-Analysis of Communication Research

On February 21th, 2020, the Center for Health and Risk Communication held the Workshop on Meta-Analysis of Communication Research. Given by Dr. Seth Noar from the University of North Carolina, the full-day workshop provides a step-by-step guide of how to undertake a meta-analysis. Nineteen participants, including COMM faculty and graduate students, joined this workshop.


CHRC Fall 2019 CHRC Distinguished Speaker – Dr. Rajiv Rimal from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

We are pleased to announce the Center for Health and Risk Communication’s Fall 2019 Distinguished Speaker – Dr. Rajiv Rimal, Professor and Chair of the Department of Health, Behavior, and Society at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Dr. Rimal’s talk is entitled: “Social norms as sources of both influence and health communication refraction: Why and how the company you keep matters so much.” The talk is scheduled for December 6th (Friday) from noon to 1:00 pm in Skinner 0200.

About Dr. Rimal:

“Rajiv N. Rimal, PhD, is Professor and Chair of the Department of Health, Behavior and Society at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Dr. Rimal is a leading expert on health behavior change and on social norms. His research focuses on the use of social and behavioral theory for disease prevention and harm reduction. Rimal has more than 25 years of experience in the conceptualization, implementation and evaluation of health promotion interventions throughout the world. He is the author of the Theory of Normative Social Behavior, which has informed work to reduce violence against women, improve driver safety among adolescents, reduce anemia among women, and study alcohol consumption among college students. This theory is also being used in numerous interventions to bring about social change.

Rimal’s current research includes a project in India, funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, that uses a social norms-based approach to design, implement and evaluate an intervention to reduce anemia among women of reproductive age. Another study investigates how structural changes in health clinics affect service uptake in developing countries. He is also leading studies that aim to understand how people with different political orientations process information about climate change and how mass media and social media can influence people’s attitudes and behaviors related to climate change.

Rimal has served as chair of the Health Communication divisions of both the International Communication Association and the National Communication Association. He was a recipient of the American Public Health Association’s Everett M. Rogers Award for Public Health Education and Health Promotion.

Rimal received a PhD in communication from Stanford University in 1995 and a Master of Arts in journalism and mass communication at Southern Illinois University in 1991.”


CHRC Hosts the Inaugural Mini-conference


Photo: The inaugural mini-conference of CHRC Research groups

On November 8th, 10 am-12 pm, the inaugural mini-conference of CHRC Research groups is successfully held in Skinner 0200. This event is open to all faculty, students, staff, and affiliates of the Department of Communication. Five research groups showcase their wonderful projects that have been going on in the CHRC research group in the past year:

Opioid Addiction: Prevention & Stigma Reduction

  • Junhan Chen, Victoria Ledford (Presenter), Jungkyu Lim, *Kang Namkoong, &Yan Qin

“I Lose, I Gain” vs. “They Lose, They Gain”: The Influence of Message Framing on Donation Intention

  • Allison Chatham, *Jiyoun Kim, Lingyan Ma, & Yuan Wang (Presenter)

How the National Weather Service Builds Relationships with Core Partners: Coordinating Across Multiple Partners to Communicate Uncertain Scientific Information

  • Allison Chatham, *Brooke Liu, *Anita Atwell Seate, Samantha Stanley (Presenter), & Yumin Yan

How do Visuals Convey Distant Suffering? A Content Analysis of the Framing of Visuals on Disaster Aid Organizations’ Social Media

  • *Sun Young Lee, Jungkyu Lim (Presenter), & Duli Shi

Food Safety Risk Communication in the Age of Social Media

  • Haley Dick, *Xiaoli Nan (Presenter), Samantha Stanley, *Leah Waks, Xiaojing Wang, Yuan Wang, & Ben Yehuda

*Faculty Mentors

CHRC Research Group promotes research collaboration in CHRC’s core areas (health, risk, and science communication) among COMM faculty and students. Over the past year, the five research teams conduct diverse projects unified by the topic of the year – Emergency Risk Communication. CHRC holds monthly meetings where all the teams participated to share their progress and give each other suggestions. Our group members are now moving forward with manuscript preparation and submissions. We hope the CHRC Research Group will work as a catalyst for interdisciplinary collaboration within the Department of Communication and beyond!

CHRC Presents Spring 2019 CHRC Distinguished Speaker – Dr. Robert Hornik from the University of Pennsylvania

About Dr. Hornik

“Robert C. Hornik (Ph.D., Stanford University) is the Wilbur Schramm Professor of Communication and Health Policy at the Annenberg School for Communication, University of Pennsylvania. He directs Penn’s original Tobacco Center for Regulatory Science funded by FDA/NCI. His major current research project under that grant examines the effects of mass and social media diffused information about tobacco products on youth and young adult decisions about tobacco use. Between 2003-2014 he directed Penn’s National Cancer Institute-funded Center of Excellence in Cancer Communication Research. That program involved major population studies of the ways information seeking and scanning influenced decision-making throughout the cancer spectrum from prevention through screening, treatment and post-diagnosis survival. He has led the evaluation of more than 20 public health communication campaigns including those focused on child survival, HIV prevention and tobacco use throughout the world as well as the evaluation of the US National Youth Antidrug Media Campaign. He is the author of Development Communication, edited Public Health Communication: Evidence for Behavior Change and co-edited Prediction and Change of Health Behavior as well as more than 140 refereed articles and papers. He has served on five US National Academy of Sciences Committees, is a Fellow of the International Communication Association and received the Mayhew Derryberry Award from the American Public Health Association and the Lindback award for distinguished teaching at Penn.”

Professors Nan and Aldoory Receive Research Communicator Impact Award

Congratulations to Professors Xiaoli Nan and Linda Aldoory who will be awarded the 2019 Research Communicator Impact Award at the Inaugural Maryland Research Excellence Celebration!

Faculty who have been selected for the award have demonstrably elevated the visibility and reputation of the University of Maryland Research Enterprise through meeting one or more of the following criteria:

  • Research finding that is both highly-cited and transformative to their field
  • Research achievement with demonstrable societal impact, such as change in policy, major external press coverage
  • Recognition by national or international group
  • Published in a renowned scholarly journal or publication in their field
  • Selection for award for a funding competition with limited submissions
  • Selection for a Division of Research Tier 1/New Directions award
  • Recipient of significant external research funding from a federal funding agency, foundation, corporation, non-profit, national laboratory, medical center, or other entity


xiaoli nanLinda Aldoory










News from:

Sahar Khamis

Associate Professor Khamis Receives Research Communicator Award

Sahar KhamisAssociate Professor Sahar Khamis was selected as a winner of the 2019 Research Communicator Impact Award in the “Op-Ed” category from the University of Maryland’s Division of Research. Communicating the value of University of Maryland research is an essential component in our mission to achieve global impact, infuse knowledge, and improve human life. The Research Communicator Impact Award was established in 2015 to recognize researchers who take a proactive approach to sharing their research or opinions on research issues and policies with the public.

The Research Communicator Impact Award is administered by the Division of Research and winners are selected by a committee of faculty and staff representing multiple disciplines. Distinguished University Professor Ben Shneiderman, of the computer science department and founding director of the Human-Computer Interaction Laboratory, initiated the award as part of his advocacy for broad communications about research.
News from:
Kang Namkoong

Assistant Professor Namkoong Receives $20,000 Pilot Grant for Augmented Reality Research

Kang NamkoongAssistant Professor Kang Namkoong is the Principal Investigator on a $20,000 one-year pilot research grant from the National Children’s Cancer for Rural and Agricultural Health and Safety (NCCRAHS). The main goals of this pilot study are to (1) develop an innovative farm safety education program entitled, Augmented Reality Intervention for Safety Education (ARISE), for farm parents and children, (2) examine the feasibility and usability of the AR health intervention, and (3) evaluate the potential of the intervention as a sustainable agricultural safety education program.

AR technology enables us to provide a high level of system-user interactivity, which allows users to freely change angles and distance to the simulations with seamless transitions. Thus, ARISE is expected to help improve the quality of farm safety education, because it is designed to provide the participants with: (1) maximum autonomy in their use of the intervention; (2) vivid second-hand experience of incidents that frequently occur in farms; and (3) interactive learning tools that present farm safety tutorials.

News from:


Interdisciplinary research group

CHRC Launches Interdisciplinary Research Group

classroom imagePhoto: CHRC Research Group holds its first group meeting for the 2018-2019 academic year.

Introducing the new Center for Health and Risk Communication (CHRC) Research Group! The goal of this research group is to promote research collaboration in CHRC’s core areas (health, risk, and science communication) among COMM faculty and students. CHRC Research Group is a cross-disciplinary initiative and is intended to energize research collaboration and dialogue among diverse traditions in communication scholarship – quantitative, qualitative, rhetorical, social scientific, humanistic, etc. Members of the research group share a common interest in substantive issues related to health, risk, or science that are of societal significance nationally or internationally. Below are a few key features of the CHRC Research Group:

  • At the beginning of each academic year, interested individuals sign up for the research group, which runs through the fall and spring semesters, with periodical group meetings (3-4 times a semester) to plan research studies, monitor progress, and share findings;
  • Group members form smaller research teams with at least one faculty mentor, one or more graduate students, and (possibly) one or more undergraduate students; One can choose to be on multiple teams;
  • Students have the option of participating for independent study credit during the fall and/or spring semesters (with a faculty mentor in the research group);
  • Each year a substantive topic is chosen by the research group as the topic of the year (e.g., Ebola, GMO, climate change, fake news, antibiotic resistance, opioid addiction, genetic editing, terrorism, nuclear energy, etc.);
  • Each team proposes and completes a research study addressing that topic using their chosen methodology/approach;
  • It is expected that by the end of the academic year, each team will produce at least one journal-submission-ready manuscript;
  • When possible, a CHRC white paper on the chosen topic will be prepared by all group members;
  • Budget permitting, CHRC will support data collection by the research teams.

We hope the CHRC Research Group will work as a catalyst for interdisciplinary collaboration within the Department of Communication and beyond!

Dr. Shana O. Ntiri

CHRC Welcomes New Members

Jiyoun KimKang-NamkoongAbdbamowo ClementJames ButlerRobert FeldmanSun-Young-LeeShana NitriMin Qi WangJunhan ChenShawna DiasSumin FangSamantha StanleyYuan WangGareth Thomas WilliamsYumin Yan

CHRC welcomes its newest members from across the College Park and Baltimore campuses of the University of Maryland. Please join us in welcoming our new affiliate faculty members and students!

New Affiliate UMD/UMB Faculty

  • Clement Adebamowo, tenured Professor of Epidemiology and Public Health, Cancer Epidemiologist and Associate Director of the Population Sciences Program of the Greenebaum Comprehensive Cancer Center University of Maryland School of Medicine.
  • James Butler III, Associate Professor in the Department of Behavioral and Community Health and an Associate Director of the Maryland Center for Health Equity in the University of Maryland School of Public Health. Dr. Butler’s research is anchored in an ecological framework that incorporates individual, social structure, and environmental influences in understanding and eliminating tobacco-related health disparities.
  • Robert H. Feldman, a cross-cultural health psychologist and Professor of Health Behavior in the Department of Behavioral and Community Health at UMD. For the past five years he has been Director of the Post-Doctoral Program of the Tobacco Center for Regulatory Sciences at UMD.
  • Jiyoun Kim, Assistant Professor in the Department of Communication at the University of Maryland who focused on the intersection of science, media & public opinion, and the dynamics of public engagement in emerging interactive media with a special emphasis on contested issues.
  • Sun Young Lee, Assistant Professor in the Department of Communication. Her research interests include the effects of CSR practices in a crisis context, visual strategies in corporate social responsibility (CSR) messages, and strategies to engage the public with CSR activities.
  • Kang Namkoong, Assistant Professor in the Department of Communication at the University of Maryland whose research focuses on the interrelationships between emerging media and health communication.
  • Shana O. Ntiri (MD, MPH), an Assistant Professor in the Department of Family and Community Medicine at the University of Maryland, School of Medicine where she divides her time between patient care, community outreach and cancer health disparities research.
  • Min Qi Wang (MS, PhD), a Professor in the School of Public Health at the University of Maryland. He is a behavioral scientist with a focus on research methodologies and technologies.

New Affiliate UMD/UMB Students

  • Junhan Chen, currently a doctoral student in UMD with a focus on health communication and science communication. She is interested in social network analysis, social media and selective exposure.
  • Shawna Dias, a doctoral student in the Department of Communication at the University of Maryland. She earned her master’s degree in Public Relations from Montana State University Billings, in 2016, and has a professional background in the humanitarian services sector.
  • Sumin Fang, Sumin earned her B.A. in Journalism and M.A. in Communication Studies and Education. She is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Communication with an emphasis in Public Relations. Her research interests include technology and health communication, organization-public relationship, and crisis communication.
  • Samantha J. Stanley, a doctoral student studying health and risk communication. She is particularly interested in the influence of group membership (i.e., gender, sexual orientation, smoking status) and identity on the processing of health messages.
  • Yuan Wang, a first-year Ph.D. student in the Department of Communication with an emphasis in Communication Science. Currently Yuan focused on health communication and media psychology.
  • Gareth Thomas Williams, a doctoral student in the Department of Communication. He is currently working on a multipart analysis of outreach communications by agricultural chemical manufacturers and the U.S. Department of Agriculture following the 1962 release of “Silent Spring” by Rachel Carson.
  • Yumin Yan, a doctoral student in the Department of Communication. She is interested in health communication in the rapid evolving digital media landscape, especially the use of communication principles and practices to create desired outcomes from given audiences.
Dr. Susan Morgan

CHRC Presents Fall 2018 CHRC Distinguished Speaker – Dr. Susan Morgan from the University of Miami

Dr. Susan MorganAbout Dr. Morgan

Dr. Susan E. Morgan (BA, University of Massachusetts, 1990; MA, University of Arizona, 1993; Ph.D., University of Arizona, 1997) is the Associate Provost for Research Development and Strategy at the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Florida, USA, where she also holds an appointment as Full Professor in the Communication Studies department. Until 2017, she served as Associate Dean for Research for the School of Communication as well as the Director for the Center for Communication, Culture, and Change.

Dr. Morgan’s research interests involve the design and evaluation of persuasive messages targeting health behavior change in multicultural populations. Her research has been supported by over $12 million in grant funding from state and national sources, including the National Institute on Drug Abuse, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, and the Department of Health and Human Services.

Dr. Morgan’s current research uses qualitative and quantitative research methodologies to investigate message design features that increase the effectiveness of health-promotive campaigns. Her current area of primary interest is in cancer communication, particularly the development of multilevel interventions designed to improve clinical trial accrual. Much of her previous research involved developing and evaluating multimedia campaigns to promote organ donation in worksite and community settings. Additionally, Dr. Morgan has conducted large-scale studies of how the mass media frames organ donation and the effects of that framing on public attitudes and behaviors toward donor registration.

Dr. Morgan serves on the editorial boards of five journals and is an active reviewer for 15 journals. She has published over 70 peer-reviewed articles and book chapters in the area of health communication. Her research has appeared in medical and leading social science journals including Clinical Transplantation, Communication Monographs, Journal of Communication, Communication Theory, Journal of Applied Communication Research, Journal of Applied Social Psychology, Health Psychology, and the Journal of the National Medical Association. She is also the author of a book, From Numbers to Words: Reporting Statistical Results for the Social Sciences.

Dr. Morgan’s recorded talk can be viewed here.