Teaching Moment # 476!
Describe the nonverbal cues of these two women.
What do these cues tell you about their relationship?
Are they friends or strangers?

Interpersonal communication is not rocket science, nor is it meant to be. Students who study interpersonal communication have communicated all their lives.

The point of studying interpersonal communication is this: People vary greatly in their ability to communicate. To understand why people differ, we need to understand what people bring to any social interaction: What motivates them to manage difficult conversations? How do two people effectively coordinate a conversation? Perhaps most fundamentally: How do two people make sense of shared information?

Scholars from every methodological corner come together in the discipline of communication studies to acquire and produce knowledge, and to find answers to the complicated world of human symbolic exchange (aka "talk"). In my own research, I rely on social scientific methods. 

Students profit tremendously from scholarship, not only when it comes to actual findings, but also when it comes to
being able to differentiate good science from bad science.There are lots of myths about communication that science simply has not supported: Women are not any more compassionate than men. And viewing your partner through rose-colored glasses actually makes for more-not less-satisfying relationships.

Applying scientific knowledge to interpersonal communication improves our lives, helps us understand why people do what they do, and ultimately makes us more compassionate about our shortcomings and those of other people.

Graduate Seminar Syllaby
Prosocial Communication and Social Support (Spring 2007)
Communication and Emotion (Spring 2015)    
Interpersonal Communication Theories (Spring 2016)   

Undergraduate Course Syllaby

Introduction to Communication Theory (Spring 2015)
Advanced Interpersonal Communication (Fall 2015)

Introduction to Relational Communication (Summer 2015)
Communication and Emotion (Spring 2008)
Prosocial Communication (Fall 2014)
Communication and Conflict (Spring 2016)
Nonverbal Communication (Fall 2015)
Quantitative Interpersonal Communication (Spring 2014)