Department of Applied Communication’s Mission:
Fostering the co-creation of better social worlds through positive communication
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 six theoretic models, which represent our core values. The six models include: (a) Positive Communication, (b) Organizational Culture, (c) Diffusion & Transformation, (d) Crisis & Renewal Communication, (e) Experiential Learning, and (f) Conflict Communication. These models 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.
To learn more about how our mission is lived out, see the article here.
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” (http://www.tandfonline.com/action/journalInformation?show=aimsScope&journalCode=rjac20#.Vsj6QZMrLow).
Graduate Student Spotlights
Undergraduate Student Spotlights
Lectures by Alumni & Faculty
The Department of Applied Communication hosts leadership lectures multiple times a year, highlighting research and work done by faculty and alumni in the areas of communication, management, and leadership.
For a sample of past lectures, go to this link.
To sign up for current lectures, go to this link.
Katie Leath, accepting the Community Partner Award for the UAMS Center for Health Literacy. (Also pictured Professor Melissa Johnston.)Katie Leath
Lauren Sanders, winner of the Students Making a Difference award (graduate level). (Also pictured Dr. April Chatham-Carpenter.)Lauren Sanders
Bruce Trimble, winner of the Alumni Making A Difference award. Also pictured, from left to right, Dr. Gerald Driskill and Dr. April Chatham-Carpenter.Bruce Trimble
Sayra Crandall winner of the Distinguished Graduate Student Scholar award. (Also pictured: Dr. April Chatham-Carpenter.)Sayra Crandall
Dr. Avinash Thombre
Dr. Thombre accepting the Students Making A Difference award (undergraduate level), on behalf of Krista Woods Calvin. (Also pictured Dr. April Chatham-Carpenter.)Dr. Avinash Thombre
Desiree Doyle, winner of the Distinguished Undergraduate Student Scholar Award. (Also pictured: Dr. April Chatham-Carpenter.)Desiree Doyle
Derrick Newby, recipient of the Angela Laird Brenton Endowed Scholarship for 2018. (Also pictured: Dr. April Chatham-Carpenter.)Derrick Newby
All offices are located on the 2nd floor of the Speech building, on the South side of UA Little Rock’s campus. The main office is in Room 237. You are welcome to come and see us!