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 Degree Discipline: Communication Studies
 Collection: UNT Theses and Dissertations
A Study of the Relationships among Relational Maintenance Strategy Usage, Communicator Style and Romantic Relational Satisfaction

A Study of the Relationships among Relational Maintenance Strategy Usage, Communicator Style and Romantic Relational Satisfaction

Date: August 1996
Creator: Hardin, Charla (Charla LeeAnn)
Description: This thesis examined student-participants' self-reported use of romantic relational maintenance strategies and their partners' reports of relational satisfaction. Additionally, individuals outside the romantic relationship reported on student-participants' general communicator style. The research proposed that general style reports would be predictive of relational maintenance strategy usage and of romantic partners' relational satisfaction. The study found that general style behaviors may not be indicative of relational maintenance strategy usage or romantic partners' relational satisfaction. Tests of sex differences revealed that females' expression of various relational maintenance strategies and style behaviors are associated with male partners' relational satisfaction; however, no results were obtained indicating specific behaviors expressed by males result in female partners' relational satisfaction.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
A Dialectical Approach to Studying Long-Distance Maintenance Strategies

A Dialectical Approach to Studying Long-Distance Maintenance Strategies

Date: August 1997
Creator: Maguire, Katheryn C. (Katheryn Coveley)
Description: Using both qualitative and quantitative methodology, this thesis investigates the tactics used by long-distance relational partners, the differences in use of the tactics between long-distance and proximal partners, the relationship among the maintenance tactics, and the relationship of the tactics to relational satisfaction. Seven relational maintenance strategies were identified from the investigation: affirmation, expression, high tech mediated communication, low tech mediated communication, future thought, negative disclosure, and together-time. Significant differences in the use of maintenance tactics between long-distance and proximal partners were discovered and several tactics were found to correlate with relational satisfaction for both relationship types. It is concluded that relational maintenance should be viewed from a multi-dimensional perspective that recognizes the impact relational dialectics have on relationships.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
"Where Do We Go From Here?" Teaching a Generation of  Nclb Students in College Classrooms

"Where Do We Go From Here?" Teaching a Generation of Nclb Students in College Classrooms

Date: May 2013
Creator: Lovoll, Andrea K.
Description: Since the passing of No Child Left Behind Act in 2001, the United States' secondary education system has undergone significant changes. In this study, I discuss the ways in which the law has encouraged the normalization of standardized testing and aim to answer two primary research questions. RQ1: What do college students and their instructors identify as the key challenges that arise as students educated under NCLB begin college coursework, and how does each group address these challenges? RQ2: What strategies do the actors and spect-actors in a Forum Theatre production arrive at for addressing the challenges faced by college instructors and their students who have completed their secondary education under No Child Left Behind? To answer the initial research question, I conducted focus group interviews with instructors and students at the University of North Texas to understand the challenges each faces in the classroom. To answer the second research question, I compiled narratives from the focus group interviews along with other materials into a performance script that concluded with scenarios based in Augusto Boal's Forum Theatre techniques. In live performance events audience members rehearsed strategies for addressing the challenges that instructors and students face in classrooms through performance. Following ...
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
Connecting the Circuit:  Analyzing Jurors' Cognitive Gaps and Damage Awards in Patent Infringement Trials

Connecting the Circuit: Analyzing Jurors' Cognitive Gaps and Damage Awards in Patent Infringement Trials

Date: May 2013
Creator: Drescher, L. Hailey
Description: Patent litigation is notorious for the technicality of evidence and the rhetoric of experts. Citizens selected to serve on the jury have no specialized training and have rarely been exposed to the technology or the patent process. This study provides insight into the field of jury decision-making in complex patent cases by analyzing the cognitive gaps and the tactics used by jurors to minimize them. Additionally, the study examines the justifications for the damage awards jurors provide. This analysis focused on jurors engaged in mock trial patent deliberations. The story model and sensemaking theory serve as the theoretical framework of this research and provide a structure for support and a lens for analysis. The results indicate that jurors rely on three distinct and dichotomous topologies when navigating cognitive gaps. Searching for answers either individually or as a group, relying on lists or stories, and turning to facts or emotions, jurors navigate through their uncertainty. Through the line-by-line analysis of mock jury transcriptions, three continuums regarding damage justifications emerged. Jury members found themselves navigating uncertainty versus certainty, rationality versus irrationality, and facts versus emotions. The theoretical implications broaden the story model to include cognitive gaps in all phases and increase the ...
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
A study of cultural variability and relational maintenance behaviors for international and domestic proximal and long distance interpersonal relationships.

A study of cultural variability and relational maintenance behaviors for international and domestic proximal and long distance interpersonal relationships.

Date: August 2002
Creator: Kidenda, Thomas J.
Description: This thesis examined 228 college students' reported use of relational maintenance behaviors and strategies and their reported perception of the degree of relational satisfaction and solidarity with the relational partners they chose to identify. The study gathered extensive data with the intention of primarily investigating the validity and reliability of measurement of relational maintenance behaviors across cultures with some attention to correlations between relationship maintenance behaviors, relationship satisfaction, and interpersonal solidarity. The study focused on refining previous measures of relationship maintenance behaviors in order to develop a comprehensive global measure. The study found that a linear combination of factors or relationship maintenance behaviors are related to relational satisfaction and interpersonal solidarity.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
The Emergence of Organization Through Communication

The Emergence of Organization Through Communication

Date: August 2002
Creator: Hope, Michael
Description: Taylor, Cooren, Giroux, and Robichaud (1996) theorize that an organization is created entirely through the interpretations of its members and it evolves as those conversations change. Demonstrating the Taylor et al. theory, the current study focuses on the outcomes of management vision and strategic planning sessions in a division of a large Southwestern University. It explores the ways organization emerges through the discourse of the managers, how text is amplified to support the organization as a whole, the ways organization continues to emerge in communication, and in what ways the emergent view of organization exists throughout the division. The results of the study support the Taylor et al. theory. Management participants created an expanded view of the organization through discourse and then linked it to the university as a whole. Evidence was found supporting continued reformulation but it was limited to the management participants and did not include hourly employees.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
This Isn't About Me: Communication Privacy Management Theory and Public Confession

This Isn't About Me: Communication Privacy Management Theory and Public Confession

Date: May 2013
Creator: Brittain, Kära Ann Caskey
Description: Individuals at the DFW Church publicly confess intensely personal information, such as drug and alcohol addiction, spousal and child abuse, stripping, and sexual abuse. Using communication privacy management theory (CPM), I examined the way individuals at the DFW Church manage their private information, how they make disclosure decisions, and how they manage boundaries around their private information. I interviewed 13 individuals who participated in public confession, and coded their responses to identify the common themes and tactics for making disclosure decisions. Through this process, I pioneer the application of CPM to examine public disclosure events, rather than dyadic or small group disclosures. I also expand our current understanding of motivations for disclosure; rather than focusing on selfish or therapeutic motivations, participants want to encourage others through their disclosure. In terms of boundary management, individuals at the DFW Church believe that God owns part, or all, of their information; thus, disclosing their pasts is "not about them." Participants construct a new identity through their testimony narrative, effectively putting the old person in the past and presenting a new, Christian identity to the church body for group approval. In this context, confessing a negative behavior becomes a way to build a positive ...
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Diversity Revealed: Photovoice Methodology as a Means for Understanding How Teens Construct Diversity

Diversity Revealed: Photovoice Methodology as a Means for Understanding How Teens Construct Diversity

Date: May 2011
Creator: Rodriguez, Stuti Mehta
Description: Through the partnership of standpoint theory and photovoice method, the present study looked at how teenagers, attending a multicultural education camp, define diversity, as well as what the participants considered to be the benefits and limitations of diversity. Standpoint theory gives the theoretical perspective to understand the marginalized voice of teenagers, while photovoice provides the tools to better capture and understand their marginalized voice. This study was situated in a professionally-developed camp, Camp CommUNITY, that emphasizes multicultural awareness amongst teens. Nine participants and 46 pictures were analyzed. Resulting from open coding, 11 categories and 6 themes were identified. Each theme and definitions of diversity are approached with a dialectical perspective, yielding to the model of dialectical dimensions of diversity. To answer Research Question 2, participants identified both benefits and limitations for photovoice method. Additional theoretical, practical, and methodological implications, limitations, and directions for future research are addressed.
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Booty Calls, Rage, and Racialized/sexualized Subjects: Tmz's Coverage of Rihanna and Chris Brown

Booty Calls, Rage, and Racialized/sexualized Subjects: Tmz's Coverage of Rihanna and Chris Brown

Date: August 2011
Creator: Sabino, Lauren
Description: Internet-based celebrity gossip blog site, TMZ, is a growing cultural force. Employing critical rhetorical analytics, the author examines the TMZ coverage of Chris Brown's assault on his then-girlfriend, Rihanna. This project explicates TMZ's enthymematic invocation of dominant cultural ideologies surrounding race, sex, and domestic violence. Chapter 1 demonstrates the theoretical importance of both celebrities and gossip blogs, signaling the ideological importance of each. Chapter 2 critiques TMZ's reliance on historic myths regarding sex and race in their reporting on this case. Chapter 3 analyzes TMZ's humorous and affective strategies that bolster broader investments in colorblind ideologies. Chapter 4 concludes by examining the interplay of formal rhetorical elements that inform the project's findings. This research reveals that TMZ utilizes affective, enthymematic strategies that camouflage broader racist and sexist ideological impulses that perpetuate domestic violence myths.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
Staying Connected: Technology Use in Grandparent-grandchild Relationships

Staying Connected: Technology Use in Grandparent-grandchild Relationships

Date: December 2012
Creator: Novak, Hannah R.
Description: Despite the distance that often separates grandparents from their young adult grandchildren, the abundance of new technologies provides numerous means of connection for the grandparent-grandchild (GP-GC) dyad. The purpose of this study was to understand how grandparents use technology, namely text messaging and Facebook, in relationships with their young adult grandchildren. Specifically, the aim was to understand grandparents' purposes for using these technologies with their grandchildren, their motivations for using these technologies, and their perceptions of these technologies. Qualitative interviews were conducted with 23 grandparent participants and analyzed according to the procedures delineated in grounded theory analysis. Both text messaging and Facebook emerged as important tools for connection, as text messaging encourages more frequent communication and Facebook helps grandparents "fill in the gaps" about their grandchildren's lives. Furthermore, results indicated that grandparents' uses of text messaging, and to a lesser extent Facebook, are acts of accommodation to their grandchildren.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
Milk machines: Exploring the breastfeeding apparatus.

Milk machines: Exploring the breastfeeding apparatus.

Date: May 2008
Creator: Kimball, Karen Yeager
Description: Arguing that current discourse surrounding breastfeeding and the lactating body promotes management of the female body, I attempt to devise an explanation of the breastfeeding apparatus and its strategies. In this study, the strategies include visual and linguistic representations of breastfeeding through art, promotional materials for advertisement and recommendations from the medical community, and the language used in the legal protection of breastfeeding. Using a rhetorical lens, I explore how these varied junctions operate within the breastfeeding apparatus and how breastfeeding is both a product of and a product in the technology. I seek to find what else is at work and how breastfeeding functions as a discursive element in its own right, allowing it to function as an apparatus for control. Finally, I question the potential for resistance in breastfeeding, asking if the lactating body has options, or is the subject so policed and managed that decisions are dictated by the breastfeeding apparatus.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
Pedagogical Approach and Instructional Format: An Exploration of the Introductory Communication Course

Pedagogical Approach and Instructional Format: An Exploration of the Introductory Communication Course

Date: May 2008
Creator: Tucker, Kristan Ann
Description: The goal of this study was to analyze the impact of instructional format and pedagogical approach on students' learning and motivation within the introductory communication course. Three hundred eighty-five students participated in this study within one of four contexts: face-to-face instruction with service-learning, face-to-face instruction without service-learning, blended instruction with service-learning, and blended instruction without service-learning. A series of MANOVAs was utilized for the study. Results of the study, possible explanations for the results, limitations, and guidelines for future research are presented.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
From "Living Hell" to "New Normal":  Illuminating Self-Identity, Stigma Negotiation, and Mutual Support among Female Former Sex Workers

From "Living Hell" to "New Normal": Illuminating Self-Identity, Stigma Negotiation, and Mutual Support among Female Former Sex Workers

Date: May 2008
Creator: Mayer, Jennifer L.
Description: Women in the sex industry struggle with emotional turmoil, drug and alcohol addiction, poverty, and spiritual disillusionment. Their lived experiences as stigmatized individuals engender feelings of powerlessness, which inhibits their attempts to leave the sex industry. This study illuminates how personal narratives develop throughout the process of shedding stigmatized identities and how mutual support functions as a tool in life transformation. Social identity theory and feminist standpoint theory are used as theoretical frameworks of this research, with each theory adding nuanced understanding to life transformations of female former sex workers. Results indicate that women in the sex industry share common narratives that reveal experiences of a "Living Hell", transitional language, and ultimate alignment with traditional norms. Implications of SIT and FST reveal the role of feminist organizations as possible patriarchal entities and adherence to stereotypical masculine ideology as an anchoring factor in continued sex work.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
Nontraditional name changes for men: Attitudes of men and women.

Nontraditional name changes for men: Attitudes of men and women.

Date: May 2008
Creator: Millspaugh, Jennifer Diane
Description: Recently, some men have taken their wives' last names upon marriage rather than following tradition. The goal of this study was to examine the attitudes that men and women have toward these nontraditional men. Ideological hegemony and social identity theory comprised the framework for examining participants' beliefs. A survey first elicited participants' extant sexist beliefs about men and the characteristics of a nontraditional man compared to a traditional man. An open-ended question further explored participants' opinions. The results indicated that benevolent sexism influences respondents' attitudes towards nontraditional men and that most respondents view nontraditional men as more nurturing and committed to their marriage than traditional men. The results further revealed a dichotomy of positive and negative attitudes towards nontraditional men indicating that society's feelings about nontraditional men are changing.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
A Communication Based Model of Power

A Communication Based Model of Power

Date: December 1995
Creator: Keefer, Larry D. (Larry Dale)
Description: We are affected greatly by power, and often do not understand what power is, how it is used, and its many other facets. Power and communication are interrelated, but how they relate to each other has been hard to understand. The model presented in this thesis explicates the relationship between the two critical variables. Power is portrayed as a hierarchical structure that is based on influence (communication) where the intensity and likelihood of success of power attempts increase as the level of power increases. The hierarchical structure has four levels, including influence at its base, and prominence, authority and control at the higher levels.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
A Rhetorical Analysis of Major Oil Companies' Advertisements in 1990 : A Semiotic Approach

A Rhetorical Analysis of Major Oil Companies' Advertisements in 1990 : A Semiotic Approach

Date: May 1998
Creator: Barton, Mica Waggoner
Description: This study demonstrates how discourse is used to construct popular myths. This study analyzes magazine advertisements used by businesses in overcoming the rhetorical problem posed by a public opinion that blamed them for environmental problems. This study shows how businesses used advertisements to construct a popular myth that businesses were doing their part in overcoming the environmental crisis.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
A Study of the Relationships between Current Attachment Styles and Previous Disengagement Strategies

A Study of the Relationships between Current Attachment Styles and Previous Disengagement Strategies

Date: August 1995
Creator: Krahl, Julia (Julia Roxanne)
Description: This thesis examined attachment styles and disengagement strategies used to end romantic relationships for 213 college students.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
Poppin' Their Thang: African American Blueswomen and Multiple Jeopardy

Poppin' Their Thang: African American Blueswomen and Multiple Jeopardy

Date: August 1997
Creator: Wright, Delane E. (Delane Elizabeth)
Description: This ethnographic analysis examines the life stories and lyrics of four African blues singers. Specifically, it compares the cultural themes that emerge their life stories to the cultural themes at emerge from their commercially released music. The findings suggest that the singers recognize, to varying degrees, the impact of racism, sexism, and classism on their personal and careers. These same themes, however, are not present in the lyrics of the music that they choose to sing. Both the stories and the lyrics reveal internal inconsistencies that mirror one another. The conclusion suggests that the inconsistencies within their stories and music are consistent with their liminal position with regard to dominant and subordinate cultures.
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Purification Rhetoric: A Generic Analysis of Draft Card, Flag, and Cross Burning Cases

Purification Rhetoric: A Generic Analysis of Draft Card, Flag, and Cross Burning Cases

Date: May 1995
Creator: Pollard, Donald Kent
Description: This thesis assesses three United States Supreme Court opinions, engaging in an inductive approach to generic criticism, in an attempt to discover whether or not there are similarities and/or differences in these decisions. This study focuses on draft card, flag, and cross burning cases argued before the Court in order to discover the potential genre's characteristics.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
Social Drama at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary : The Dilday Controversy

Social Drama at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary : The Dilday Controversy

Date: December 1995
Creator: Drake, Webster F. (Webster Ford)
Description: This study examines the events surrounding the firing of Russell Dilday at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary as a social drama. The results suggest that, for application to post-industrial cultures, adaptations need to be made to Victor Turner's original method. The addition of Thomas Farrell's anticipation phase, identification of the breach with the transgression, and examination of unique facets of post-industrial cultures such as economic factors and the role of the media are recommended modifications. In light of these differences, the study concludes that the state of affairs at Southwestern is characteristic of schism in a post-industrial culture.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
A Study of the Relationships among Student Expectations about Teacher Nonverbal Immediacy, Student Perceptions of Teacher Nonverbal Immediacy, and Affective Learning in Distance Learning and the On-Site Classroom

A Study of the Relationships among Student Expectations about Teacher Nonverbal Immediacy, Student Perceptions of Teacher Nonverbal Immediacy, and Affective Learning in Distance Learning and the On-Site Classroom

Date: July 1997
Creator: Witt, Paul L.
Description: This thesis explored the relationships among three communication variables in college-level instruction: students' expectancy about teachers' nonverbal immediacy, students' actual perceptions of teachers' nonverbal immediacy, and students' affective learning. Community college students enrolled in either distance learning or a traditional classroom course completed pre-course and mid-course questionnaires to indicate their expectations and observations of the nonverbal immediacy behaviors of their teachers. Analysis showed that students expected and perceived less nonverbal immediacy from tele-course teachers than from on-site teachers, but that perceptions significantly exceeded expectations. Research findings indicated that students' expectancies about teachers' nonverbal immediacy may influence the measurement of affective learning.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
Enacting Racism: Clarence Thomas, George Bush, and the Construction of Social Reality

Enacting Racism: Clarence Thomas, George Bush, and the Construction of Social Reality

Date: May 1995
Creator: Ramsey, Evelyn Michele Eaton
Description: This study analyzes the confirmation hearings discourse of Clarence Thomas and George Bush. Language constructs social reality. The United States has a history of racism and this history manifests itself in our language. The discourse of Clarence Thomas and George Bush created a social reality that equated opposition to Thomas' confirmation with racism using rhetorical strategies that included metaphor and narrative construction.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
An Analysis of Gay/Lesbian Instructor Identity in the Classroom

An Analysis of Gay/Lesbian Instructor Identity in the Classroom

Date: May 2008
Creator: Giovanini, Heather
Description: In this project I explore the connection between cultural and personal identity in the college classroom. Respondent interviews were conducted using open-ended questions, which began with a broad picture of the role the instructor played in the classroom and then focused more specifically on the issue of sexual orientation and the choices to disclose or not disclose orientation in the classroom. Thematic analysis was used to examine the interviews, upon the completion of the interviews being transcribed. RQ1: Do gay and lesbian instructors disclose their sexual orientation in the classroom? From this question, four themes emerged. These themes were disclosure not relevant, out of the classroom disclosure, students just know, and disclosure in the classroom. RQ2: What reasons do gay and lesbian instructors give for disclosing their sexual orientation in the classroom? Two themes, fears of disclosure and holding back, transpired from this question. RQ3: How do gay and lesbian instructors foster diversity in the classroom related to sexual orientation? Four themes were exposed from the question, and these themes were paradox of diversity, passing, mentoring, and identity not sexuality.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
We've Only Just Begun: A Black Feminist Analysis of Eleanor Smeal's National Press Club Address

We've Only Just Begun: A Black Feminist Analysis of Eleanor Smeal's National Press Club Address

Date: August 2000
Creator: Tate, Tara L.
Description: The voices of black women have traditionally been excluded from rhetorical scholarship, both as a subject of study and as a methodological approach. Despite the little attention black feminist thought has received, black women have long been articulating the unique intersection of oppressions they face and have been developing critical epistemologies.This study analyzes the National Press Club address given by NOW President Eleanor Smeal utilizing a black feminist methodological approach. The study constructs a black feminist theory for the communication discipline and applies it to a discursive artifact from the women's liberation movement. The implications of the study include the introduction of a new methodological approach to the communication discipline that can expand the liberatory reach of its scholarship.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
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