NCA's Doctoral Program Guide

University of Kentucky, College of Communication & Information

The Ph.D. program in the College of Communication & Information at the University of Kentucky emphasizes communication as a social science. Graduates are prepared for university positions and careers in government, the media and other organizations as researchers, consultants and policy makers. Students must demonstrate general knowledge of communication theory and research methods, as well as competence in a core area of specialization. Current core areas include health communication, information studies, instructional communication, media and mass communication, risk and crisis communication, and strategic and organizational communication.


Carnegie "Doctoral University: Very High Research Activity"


Communication doctorates conferred between 2010-17: 60


Concentrations/Research Emphases    

  • Health Communication
  • Information Studies
  • Instructional Communication
  • Media & Mass Communication
  • Risk & Crisis Communication
  • Strategic & Organizational Communication


NRC Assessment of Research-Doctorate Programs

  • #14 of 83 programs in Research Output
  • #33 of 83 programs in Diversity

Allen, et al., 2012

  • #15 of 60 programs by Number of Citations


  • Top Ten Research Program in 24 of 99 Research Areas

Admission Requirements

  • Admission to the Graduate Program in Communication is highly competitive.  The number of applicants is far greater than the number of available spaces. Each year, our Admissions Committee is faced with the challenge of selecting the best from a pool of highly qualified applicants.  We take into account all elements of the application, however students must have a 3.0 GPA or higher from their undergraduate and graduate institution in order to be considered for admission. Please note that we only review applications that are completed by the deadline.  Due to the competitive nature of our program, we strongly advise that you complete your application materials well before the deadline.

Graduate Faculty

  • Assistant Professor Melissa Adler, Ph.D., University of Wisconsin 
  • Professor Chike Anyaegbunam, Ph.D., University of Iowa 
  • Assistant Professor Tae Hyun Baek, Ph.D., University of Georgia 
  • Professor Beth Barnes, Ph.D., Northwestern University 
  • Professor Douglas A. Boyd, Ph.D., University of Minnesota 
  • Assistant Professor Sean Burns, Ph.D., University of Missouri 
  • Associate Professor Maria Cahill, Ph.D., University of Texas Knoxville 
  • Associate Professor Namjoo Choi, Ph.D., University of Albany, SUNY 
  • Associate Professor Deborah S. Chung, Ph.D., Indiana University 
  • Professor Alan D. Desantis, Ph.D., Indiana University 
  • Assistant Professor Marko Dragojevic, Ph.D, University of California, Santa Barbara 
  • Associate Professor Alyssa Eckman, Ph.D., University of Kentucky
  • Assistant Professor Fatima Espinoza-Vasquez, Ph.D., Syracuse University
  • Assistant Professor Laura Fischer, Ph.D., Texas Tech University
  • Associate Professor Brandi Frisby, Ph.D., West Virginia University 
  • Assistant Professor Adriane Grumbein, Ph.D., University of Florida 
  • Professor Nancy Harrington, Ph.D., University of Kentucky 
  • Associate Professor Donald W. Helme, Ph.D., University of Kentucky 
  • Associate Professor James K. Hertog, Ph.D., University of Minnesota 
  • Professor Jeff Huber, Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh 
  • Assistant Professor Kyra Hunting, Ph.D., University of Wisconsin 
  • Associate Professor Phillip Hutchison, Ph.D., University of Utah 
  • Associate Professor Bobi Ivanov, Ph.D., University of Oklahoma 
  • Professor J. David Johnson, Ph.D., Michigan State University 
  • Assistant Professor Soohyung Joo, Ph.D., University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee 
  • Assistant Professor Renee Kaufmann, Ph.D., University of Kentucky
  • Associate Professor Sujin Kim, Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh 
  • Associate Professor Yung Soo Kim, Ph.D., Southern Illinois University 
  • Assistant Professor Youngseek Kim, Ph.D., Syracuse University 
  • Associate Professor Derek Lane, Ph.D., University of Oklahoma 
  • Associate Professor Anthony Limperos, Ph.D., Pennsylvania State University 
  • Professor Thomas R. Lindlof, Ph.D., University of Texas 
  • Assistant Professor Kelly McAninch, Ph.D., University of Illinois
  • Assistant Professor David Nemer, Ph.D, Indiana University 
  • Assistant Professor Bryce Newell, Ph.D., University of Washington
  • Professor H. Dan O’Hair, Ph.D., University of Oklahoma 
  • Assistant Professor Shannon Oltmann, Ph.D., Indiana University
  • Associate Professor Kimberly Parker, Ph.D., University of Oklahoma
  • Assistant Professor Andrew Pilny, Ph.D., University of Illinois 
  • Assistant Professor Nick Proferes, Ph.D., University of Wisconsin 
  • Associate Professor Kevin Real, Ph.D., Texas A&M University 
  • Assistant Professor Jennifer Scarduzio, Ph.D., Arizona State University 
  • Associate Professor Allison Scott Gordon, Ph.D., University of Illinois
  • Assistant Professor Jeannette Sutton, Ph.D., University of Colorado 
  • Associate Professor Zixue Tai, Ph.D., University of Minnesota 
  • Associate Professor Shari Veil, Ph.D., North Dakota State University 
  • Associate Professor Sherali Zeadally, Ph.D., University of Buckingham 
Research Specialties : 
Health Communication, Interpersonal-Small Group Communication, Mass Communication-Media Studies, Risk-Science-Environmental Communication