NCA's Doctoral Program Guide

Kent State University, College of Communication & Information

The integrative doctoral program in the College of Communication and Information at Kent State University provides students with a foundation in communication and information. The curriculum begins with interdisciplinary core courses, and then becomes individually tailored to allow specialization in depth according to each student’s developing areas of expertise and research. This Ph.D. program is a logical extension of the convergence of the communication and information disciplines taking place within the college as well as in the academic, commercial and professional world.

Carnegie "Doctoral University: Highest Research Activity"


Communication doctorates conferred between 2010-17: 15


Concentrations/Research Emphases

  • Cultural Heritage Informatics
  • Global Communication
  • Human Information Behavior
  • ​Interpersonal Communication
  • Knowledge Organization
  • Media, Technology, and Society


NRC Assessment of Research-Doctorate Programs

  • #70 of 83 programs in Research Output
  • #23 of 83 programs in Diversity

Allen, et al., 2012

  • #46 of 60 programs by Number of Citations


  • Top Ten Research Program in 12 of 99 Research Areas

Admission Requirements 

  • Completion of the academic requirements of a master's degree in one of the disciplines represented in the College of Communication and Information.
  • A minimum 3.3 (where A=4.0) graduate GPA (GPA above 3.5 strongly recommended).
  • A Verbal score of 160 and a Quantitative score of 148 on the Graduate Record Examination.
  • Superior letters of recommendation from those in a position to evaluate graduate academic performance and potential.
  • A statement of purpose.
  • A sample of superior scholarly writing (published paper, major term paper, thesis chapter, etc.). 

Graduate Faculty  

  • Assistant Professor Aaron Bacue, Ph.D., University of Arizona
  • Assistant Professor Michael Beam, Ph.D., Ohio State University
  • Assistant Professor Laurie Bentley, M.A., Kent State University
  • Assistant Professor Ginger Bihn-Coss, Ph.D., Bowling Green State University
  • Associate Professor Bei Cai, Ph.D., Bowling Green State University
  • Associate Professor Jeffrey T. Child, Ph.D., North Dakota State University
  • Assistant Professor Cristin Compton, Ph.D., University of Missouri
  • Associate Professor Suzy D'Enbeau, Ph.D., Purdue University
  • Assistant Professor Patrick Dillon, Ph.D., University of South Florida
  • Professor Nichole L. Egbert, Ph.D., University of Georgia
  • Associate Professor Catherine Goodall, Ph.D., Ohio State University
  • Professor Elizabeth Graham, Ph.D., Kent State University
  • Professor Paul Haridakis, Ph.D., Kent State University
  • Associate Professor Erin Hollenbaugh, Ph.D., Kent State University
  • Assistant Professor Yesim Kaptan, Ph.D., Indiana University
  • Associate Professor Mei-Chen Lin, Ph.D., University of Kansas
  • Assistant Professor Jennifer L. McCullough, Ph.D., Ohio State University
  • Associate Professor Janet Meyer, Ph.D., University of Michigan
  • Assistant Professor James Ponder, Ph.D., Kent State University
  • Assistant Professor Rekha Sharma, Ph.D., Kent State University
  • Assistant Professor Stephanie D. Smith, M.P.A., Harvard University
  • Assistant Professor Paul Sommer, Ph.D., Texas A&M University
  • Assistant Professor Ikram Toumi, Ph.D., University of Texas
  • Associate Professor David Trebing, Ph.D., Kent State University
  • Assistant Professor Tewodros Workneh, Ph.D., University of Oregon