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!