Health Communication Scholars Program

Health Communication Scholars Program

Health Communication Scholars Program

2016-17 HCSP Details

The HCSP will be awarding four $2,000 grants for the 2016-17 academic year. Dates and application materials have been updated throughout the website for this funding cycle.

HCSP Grant Writing Workshop - Save the Date and Register: October 7 (9am-12:15pm) 

The HCSP grant writing workshop will be October 7 from 9am-12:15pm in CMA 5.136. Speakers will include:

  • Mary Steinhardt (Department of Kinesiology and Health Education)
  • Kavita Radhakrishnan (School of Nursing)
  • Jennifer Lyon Gardner (Office of the Vice President for Research)
  • Michael Mackert (Center for Health Communication)

Please register for the workshop here if you plan on attending. Registration is free!

2015-16 Funded Proposals 

The HCSP funded four proposals for the 2015-16 academic year. Congratulations to these students on funding their exciting projects!
Understanding of the Public’s Information Behaviors During Pandemics
Principal Investigator: Jisoo Ahn (Advertising & Public Relations)
Co-Investigator: Teresa Vogt (Health Behavior and Health Education)
Co-Investigator: Hyeseung Koh (Advertising & Public Relations)
Faculty Mentor: Yan Zhang (Information)
Emerging pandemic diseases with high death tolls have led to an increased need to manage the public’s uncertainty and anxiety, especially during the initial stage of disease. The purpose of this project is to explore individuals’ information behaviors such as acquisition, transmission, and selection of disease- related information to manage their uncertainty and anxiety as well as understand information sources and targets of information exchange. Participants will be recruited in the U.S. and Korea, where Ebola and Mers-CoV occurred respectively, and will be asked to recall their information behaviors at that time.
Crisis Text Lines as Youth Lifelines? Examining the Utility of the Crisis Text Line Program with Suicidal Teenagers
Principal Investigator: Hannah Szlyk (Social Work)
Co-Investigator: Victor Garcia-Perdomo (Journalism)
Faculty Mentor: Lauren Gulbas (Social Work)
The project will explore the utilization, symbolic interaction and execution of the Crisis Text Line, a crisis intervention hotline accessed through text message, by identifying caller demographics and frames, as well as the approaches used by volunteer counselors to engage teen callers. This project will also evaluate how preexisting theories, such as framing of media effects, and approaches of suicide prevention are being integrated into the crisis text messages by volunteers and how texters respond to these strategies. Therefore, the information provided by the proposed project would inform researchers and program administrators on how effective evidence-based strategies, such as motivational interviewing and cognitive behavioral therapy, truly are when administered by volunteer counselors in a less formal crisis setting.
HealthyhornsTXT Targets Messaging: An Evaluation of Linguistic Agency Assignment in Text Messages About Health
Principal Investigator: Elizabeth Glowacki (Communication Studies)
Co-Investigator: Daniel Kreitzberg (Kinesiology and Health Education)
Co-Investigator: Emilly Scheinfeld (Communication Studies)
Faculty Mentor: Jay Bernhardt (Communication)
Although there are robust findings on text message delivery and text message outcomes in health, little has been done to look at text message content. A better understanding of how message content impacts message delivery can increase the efficacy of these interventions. Therefore, the goal of this project is to evaluate how language manipulation enhances the quality and persuasiveness of text-messages about health behaviors. We will apply a linguistic agency assignment framework to evaluate how assignments of agency to human or non-human agents influences health behaviors. Text messages about health information and resources on campus will be sent to participants enrolled in the HealthyhornsTXT program run by University Health Services. HealthyhornsTXT an innovative text-message program that sends tips for healthy eating, safe sex, alcohol risk reduction, sleep habits, engagement in physical activity, and mental health to UT students.
Exploring Therapeutic Effects of Expressive Writing: Anticipated Reemergence of Stressors Related to Mental Illness
Principal Investigator: Mackenzie Greenwell (Communication Studies)
Co-Investigator: JhuCin Jhang (Communication Studies)
Co-Investigator: Wenhui Zhang (Nursing)
Faculty Mentor: Jasper Smits (Psychology)
When individuals feel a responsibility to disclose, for example, a mental health condition to friends, coworkers, or healthcare providers, ongoing stressors related to this mental illness might resurface. This study will examine the therapeutic effects of writing rehearsals or practice scripts for situations in which an anticipated stressor related to mental illness may arise. Using a three-group experimental design, the proposed study aims to contribute practical and cost-effective treatment methods for individuals coping with mental illness.