Department of Applied Communication’s Mission:

Fostering the co-creation of better social worlds through positive communication

Dr. Gerald Driskill head shot

Dr. Gerald Driskill spoke about counter-narratives on February 22nd as part of our Second Annual Leadership Lecture Series.

Read our interview: Dr. Driskill’s Lecture Helps You Identify Counter-Narratives

 Check out what is going on in our department!!

(Click on images to read more)

Who We Are

In the Department of Applied Communication at UALR, our mission is to foster the co-creation of better social worlds through positive communication. Our on-campus, hybrid and online courses not only provide you with the flexibility to pursue a variety of exciting and meaningful careers, they will set you apart in a highly competitive, global market. 

Our department believes expanding access to higher education can transform lives. For that reason, we are proud to offer students the option of completing their Bachelor’s degree in a fully online format through the UALR Online program, and/or through face-to-face and hybrid classes. In addition, our M.A. program in Applied Communication provides a unique weekend, evening, and hybrid format for professionals who wish to advance their career.

Consistent with our departmental mission, the department is united around five pillars, which represent our core values. The five pillars include: (a) Positive Communication, (b) Communication & Culture, (c) Communication & Transformation, (d) Crisis & Renewal Communication, and (e) Experiential Learning. The pillars function as areas of inquiry, expertise, and foci for teaching and research. They reflect the department’s cohesive focus on ethical communication that is apparent in both our undergraduate and graduate programs.

We believe our curriculum enables students to learn how to practice positive communication in interpersonal, organizational, and public contexts.  The coursework and experiential learning in which students in our programs engage, while in our department, allow them to be able to achieve our learning outcomes.

Applied Communication

Applied communication looks at how communication theory and principles can be used to better the communication that takes place in a variety of contexts. In our program, we focus primarily on interpersonal and organizational contexts, helping students analyze and develop messages, anticipate communication barriers and accomplish communicative goals, and embrace differences and influence discourse around them.  Students learn to “apply” theory to everyday situations in order to improve the communication within those situations.

Our curriculum is interactive in nature, with an emphasis on case studies and ethical communication across the curriculum, in order to help students understand how to use positive communication to make a difference in their personal and professional lives. 

Consistent with our departmental focus on applied communication, since 1973, our discipline has had a journal dedicated to Applied Communication issues, entitled the Journal of Applied Communication Research, which has been publishing “original peer-reviewed scholarship that addresses or challenges the relation between theory and practice in understanding communication in applied contexts” and “aims primarily to contribute to how people practice communication across multiple contexts” (

Applied Communication

Our Location:

Detailed map showing location of department office

All offices are located on the 2nd floor of the Speech building, on the South side of UALR’s campus. The main office is in Room 237. You are welcome to come and see us!