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Interdisciplinary Health Communication Concentration

Interdisciplinary concentrations are alternatives to liberal learning requirements that allow a student to concentrate on one specific topic. The department offers health communication as an interdisciplinary concentration.

Health communication is an area of theory, research and practice related to understanding and influencing the interdependence of communication and health-related beliefs, behaviors and outcomes. The field combines both scholarship and practice. It embraces not only traditional scholarship, emphasizing theory and data collection; it also includes the use of research for broad “therapeutic” goals, using knowledge about message formation and communication to alleviate suffering or reduce risky behavior.

For more information on the requirements for this concentration, see the this page.

Student Achievements in Health Communication

  • National Recognition: Two students, Dana Eisenberg ‘06 and Tom Hipper ’06, were the first undergraduates ever to present a paper at the 2006 invitation-only University of Kentucky health communication conference, the most prestigious health communication conference in the nation, held every two years. Their paper was titled: “ Nationwide Newspaper Coverage of Efforts to Regulate Environmental Tobacco Smoke: A Community Structure Approach”
  • National Recognition: Three Stephen Smith awards for best student group paper in the nation, awarded by the National Communication Association (2000, 2005, 2006), for papers co-authored by TCNJ students on health communication topics, respectively: patient’s bill of rights; cross-national coverage of UN efforts to fight AIDS; cross-national coverage of NGO efforts to fight AIDS.
  • Regional Recognition: TCNJ student co-authored papers won “best undergraduate paper” from the health communication division of the Eastern Communication Association from 2003-2007.

Faculty Sponsor

Dr. John C. Pollock, whose accomplishments in health communication include:

  • Two research grants for research on smoking prevention from the National Cancer Institute
  • One grant for cross-national research on AIDS prevention from the United Nations Foundation
  • Service on three scientific review boards for the National Cancer Institute
  • Invited member of Coalition for Health Communication Research (building bridges between the International Communication Association and the American Association for Public Health)