Graduate Study with Me

I welcome prospective doctoral students. My group of political communication students typically numbers about five. They have varied interests in political communication in the US and in other countries, and they generally share a focus on digital media.

Contact Me about Applying

If you are planning to apply for graduate study at UCSB with me as your advisor, please feel free to get in touch well in advance of the application deadline, so that we can discuss mutual interests and fit.


I occasionally host post-doctoral scholars and pre-doctoral visitors from other universities, but I strongly discourage unsolicited letters proposing an extended visit without any previous exchange or interaction. 

​Tips on Success in Grad School

Here is an open letter to new doctoral students about success in graduate school. It distills some of what I've observed over the years about the practices and attitudes of doctoral students who are the most satisfied with their experiences earning a PhD. 

Letters of Recommendation

Current and former students seeking letters of recommendation for multiple positions should plan ahead. Be prepared to give me all the information I need to understand what each position is, to address letters to the specific recipients, and to know the deadlines. To the extent possible, I will write customized letters that address the specifics of the position, but this requires some time and planning in advance on your part.   

What My Students Work On

Current Ph.D. Students

  • ​The flow of news through social media networks

  • Media, disinformation and populism

  • Ethnocentrism and social media

  • Falsehoods in news

  • Social media use and civic engagement in China

Recently Completed Ph.D. Students

  • How cultural differences between Japan and Korea moderate the effects of networks and social influence in collective action

  • How social signals moderate classical media effects

  • Role of social media in campaigns for office in Latin America

  • The dynamics of viral news events online

  • Agenda-setting dynamics between social media and professional news

  • The Occupy movement and news media treatment of inequality

  • Internet skills and political participation

  • Political consumerism as a form of collective action