1. K-State home
  2. »Communication Studies
  3. »About
  4. »Research and Projects

Department of Communication Studies

Research and Projects

The Communication Studies program is dedicated to research that advances the fields of communication and rhetoric. Our students and faculty are involved in a number of scholarly activities, including the following.

Collaborative Projects

The Institute for Civic Discourse and Democracy, founded by Communication Studies professors, is an interdisciplinary group of faculty, students, and community associates who are interested in the connection between civic discourse and democracy. Several Communication Studies faculty are involved in ICDD research and teaching, including the editorship of the Journal of Public Deliberation.

Current Faculty Research & Projects

Soumia Bardhan, Ph.D

Recent Publications

Bardhan, S. & Wood, R. (2015) The role of culture in civil society promotion in the Middle East: A case study approach with technology for social networking. Digest of Middle East Studies, 24(1), 111-138.

Bardhan, S. & Foss, K. (forthcoming). Revolutionary Graffiti and Cairene Women: Performing Agency through Gaze Aversion. In Charrad, M. & R. Stephan (Eds.) Women Rising: Resistance, Revolution, and Reform in the Arab Spring and Beyond. New York University Press.

Gonzalez, A. & Bardhan, S. (forthcoming). Intercultural Rhetoric. In Y.Y. Kim (Ed.), The International Encyclopedia of Intercultural Communication. Wiley Publications.


$4,200 University Small Research Grant, Research and Sponsored Programs, K-State, 2016

Current Projects

1 (article): "Negotiating religious, cultural, and minority identities: A Shia Muslim community in post-partition Bengal"

2 (article): "Mutuality and/or hierarchy in The Sublime Qur'an: A feminist re-interpretation of the Qur'an"

2 (book): "The rise and fall of cyber counterpublics in the Arab world: The Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood and Ikhwanweb"

Charlie Griffin, Ph.D.

Recent Publication
Griffin, Charlie (Fall 2009). John Brown's ‘Madness. Rhetoric of Public Affairs. 12.3.

Current Project
I am working now on a paper with the working title of "Moving Day in the House Divided: Strategic Metonymy in Vice President Breckinridge's Speech on the Removal of the Senate From Its Old Chamber, January 4, 1859."

Soo-Hye Han, Ph.D

Recent Publications

Han, S., Schenck-Hamlin, B., & Schenck-Hamlin, D. (2015). Inclusion, Equality, and Discourse Quality in Citizen Deliberations on Broadband, Journal of Public Deliberation, 11(1), Article 3.

Han, S., & Brazeal, L. (2015). Modeling Civility in Online Political Discussions, Communication Research Reports, 32(1), 20-28.

Current Project
Dr. Han is currently working on a research project investigating how the media portray volunteers and volunteerism and how these portrayals have changed over time. She is also working on several research projects examining political talk and deliberation among young adults during election campaigns.

Colene Lind, Ph. D

Recent Publications 
Lind, C. J. (2015). Citizen talk at the local level: Community decision-making about water use. Kansas State University College of Arts and Sciences Faculty Enhancement Grant, $10,000.

Lind, C. J. (2014). Deference in the district: An analysis of congressional town hall meetings from the C-SPAN video library. In R. Browning (Ed.), The C-SPAN Archives: An Interdisciplinary Resource for Discovery, Learning, and Engagement (pp. 59-77). West Lafayette, IN: Purdue University Press. 

Hart, R. P., Childers, J. P., & Lind, C. J. (2013). Political tone: How leaders talk and why. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

Current Project
Drawing on her study of the final development phase of the Vision for the Future of Water Supply in Kansas, Dr. Lind is analyzing how citizens use language in environmental decision-making. By better understanding the rhetorical choices participants make when talking and writing about natural resources, she aims to improve such public processes.

Gregory Paul, Ph.D

Recent Publications

Paul, G.D. (in press-2016). But does it work? The influence of perceived goal attainment effectiveness on willingness to use legalistic and restorative responses to offensive behavior. Communication Studies.


Learning Agreement, $40,000. [Funded]

Kettering Foundation
Funding to facilitate public deliberation on restorative justice potential around Kansas.

Center for Engagement and Community Development, 2015, $9,403 [Funded]

Kansas State University
Funding to facilitate public deliberation on restorative justice potential in Manhattan, KS.

Natalie Pennington, Ph.D

Recent Publications

Hall, J.A. & Pennington, N. (2015). Mundane mobile maintenance, entrapment, and hyper-coordination. In Z. Yan (Ed.), Encyclopedia of mobile phone behavior (volumes 1,2, & 3). Hershey, PA: IGI Global Publishing.

Pennington, N., Winfrey, K.L., Warner, B., & Kearney, M. (2015). Liking Obama and Romney (On Facebook): An experimental evaluation of political engagement and efficacy during the 2012 general election. Computers in Human Behavior, 44, 279-283. doi: 10.1016/j.chb.2014.11.032. Impact Factor (2013): 2.273

Current Research

Dr. Pennington is analyzing data related to relational maintenance and dissolution through social networking sites. By considering how people engage with others through sites like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, hopefully we can have a better understanding of the role new media plays in relationships today.

Sarah Riforgiate, Ph.D

Recent Publications

Kirby, E. L., Riforgiate, S.E., Anderson, I. K., Lahman, M. P., & Lietzenmayer, A. M. (Accepted-Forthcoming). Working mothers as "jugglers": A critical look at popular work-family balance films. Journal of Family Communication.

Riforgiate, S. E., & Boren, J. P. (2015). Communicating domestic labor task resistance and equity restoring strategies among married individuals. Journal of Family Communication, 15, 309-329. doi: 10.1080/15267431.2015.1076421

Tim Steffensmeier, Ph.D.

Recent publications

PytlikZillig, L. M., Steffensmeier, T., Campbell Hibbs, A., Champion, B., Hunt, E. D., Harrington, J., Jr., Spears, J., Umphlett, N., Bruning, R., & Kahl, D. (2013). Fostering climate change education in the Central Great Plains: A public engagement approach. International Journal of Sustainability, 8(1), 161-177.

Steffensmeier, T. (2010) Building a Public Square: An Analysis of Community Narratives.Community Development 41.2, 255-268.

Current Research
1)Analyzing a citizen leader development program in Myanmar
2) Finishing a book length project on public deliberation in a community development process
3) A paper that examines the classroom as a proto-public space