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Communication Research

Communication Research

Silvia Knobloch-Westerwick Technische Universität Berlin, Germany
Stephen A. Rains University of Arizona, USA

eISSN: 15523810 | ISSN: 00936502 | Current volume: 51 | Current issue: 3 Frequency: 8 Times/Year

For over three decades researchers and practitioners have depended on Communication Research for the most up-to-date, comprehensive and important research on communication and its related fields.

Important, In-Depth Research and Scholarship

Communication processes are a fundamental part of virtually every aspect of human social life. Communication Research publishes articles that explore the processes, antecedents, and consequences of communication in a broad range of societal systems. Although most of the published articles are empirical, we also consider overview/review articles. These include the following:

  • mass media
  • interpersonal
  • health
  • political
  • entertainment
  • advertising/persuasive communication
  • new technology, online, computer-mediated and mobile communication 
  • organizational
  • intercultural
  • group
  • family

Communication Research takes you to the cutting-edge of research and theory in all areas within the field of communication. It serves as the international forum aimed at the academic or professional interested in current research in communication and its related fields.

Why you need Communication Research

  • Research and theory presented in all areas of communication give you comprehensive coverage of the field
  • Rigorous, empirical analysis provides you with research that’s reliable and high in quality
  • The multi-disciplinary perspective contributes to a greater understanding of communication processes and outcomes
  • "Themed issues" bring you in-depth examinations of a specific area of importance, as thematically connected articles selected in the standard peer-review process are conveniently presented in a single issue
  • Expert editorial guidance represents a wide range of interests from inside and outside the traditional boundaries of the communication discipline


Empirical research in communication began in the 20th century, and there are more researchers pursuing answers to communication questions today than at any other time. The editorial goal of Communication Research is to offer a special opportunity for reflection and change in the new millennium. To qualify for publication, research should, first, be explicitly tied to some form of communication; second, be theoretically driven with conclusions that inform theory; third, use the most rigorous empirical methods OR provide a review of a research area; and fourth, be directly linked to the most important problems and issues facing humankind. Criteria do not privilege any particular context; indeed, we believe that the key problems facing humankind occur in close relationships, groups, organizations, and cultures. Hence, we hope to publish research conducted across a wide variety of levels and units of analysis.

Silvia Knobloch-Westerwick Technische Universität Berlin, Germany
Stephen Rains University of Arizona, USA
Former Editors
Jennifer Gibbs University of California, Santa Barbara, USA
Pamela Shoemaker Syracuse University, USA
Michael E. Roloff Northwestern University, USA
Charles R. Berger University of California, Davis, USA
Sandra J. Ball-Rokeach University of Southern California, USA
Peter R. Monge University of Southern California, USA
Steven H. Chaffee Stanford University, USA
F. Gerald Kline University of Minnesota, USA
Editorial Board
Sun Joo (Grace) Ahn University of Georgia, USA
Michael R. Allen University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee, USA
Lindsey Aloia University of Arkansas, USA
Eran Amsalem The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel
Julie Andsager University of Tennessee, USA
Florian Arendt University of Vienna, Austria
Erica Weintraub Austin Washington State University, USA
Christian Baden The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel
Sandra J. Ball-Rokeach University of Southern California, USA
William Barley University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, USA
Matthew Barnidge University of Alabama, USA
Anne Bartsch University of Leipzig, Germany
Michael Beam Kent State University, USA
Christopher Beaudoin Boston University, USA
Charles R. Berger University of California, Davis, USA
Andrew Billings University of Alabama, USA
Robin Blom Ball State University, USA
Bradley Bond University of San Diego, USA
Robert Bond The Ohio State University, USA
James Bonus The Ohio State University, USA
Porismita Borah Washington State University, USA
Shelley Boulianne MacEwan University, Canada
Hans-Bernd Brosius Ludwig-Maximilians University of Munich, Germany
Tricia Burke University of Arizona, USA
Daniel J. Canary University of Utah, USA
Scott Caplan University of Delaware, USA
Joseph N. Cappella University of Pennsylvania, USA
Michael X. Delli Carpini University of Pennsylvania, USA
John Caughlin University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA
Stella C. Chia City University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
Hichang Cho National University of Singapore, Singapore
Hyunyi Cho The Ohio State University, USA
Jaeho Cho University of California - Davis, USA
Drew Cingel University of California, Davis, USA
Jason Coronel The Ohio State University, USA
Glenn Cummins Texas Tech University, USA
Claes de Vreese University of Amsterdam, Netherlands
Amy Delaney Millikin University, USA
James P. Dillard Pennsylvania State University, USA
Travis L. Dixon University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA
Sharon Dunwoody University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA
Morgan Ellithorpe University of Delaware, USA
William P. Eveland Jr. The Ohio State University, USA
Thomas Feeley, PhD University of Buffalo, USA
Lauren Feldman Rutgers University, USA
Bo Feng University of California, Davis, USA
Edward L. Fink Temple University, USA
Sophia Fu Rutgers University, USA
Yuki Fujioka Georgia State University, USA
Stefan Geiß Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Norway
Darren Gergle Northwestern University, USA
Amy Gonzales University of California Santa Barbara, USA
Melanie Green University at Buffalo, USA
Jacob Groshek Kansas State University, USA
Lei Guo Fudan University, China
M Hameleers University of Amsterdam, Netherlands
Tilo Hartmann Vrije University Amsterdam, Netherlands
Andrew High Pennsylvania State University, USA
Itai Himelboim University of Georgia, USA
Jay Hmielowski University of Florida, USA
Cynthia A. Hoffner Georgia State University, USA
R. Lance Holbert Temple University, USA
Amanda J. Holmstrom Michigan State University, USA
Traci Hong Boston University, USA
J. Brian Houston University of Missouri, USA
Myiah Hutchens University of Florida, USA
Yoori Hwang Myongji University, South Korea
Leo Jeffres Cleveland State University, USA
Jakob Jensen University of Utah, USA
Yan Jin University of Georgia, USA
Benjamin Johnson University of Florida, USA
Susanne M. Jones University of Minnesota, USA
Jennifer Kam University of California - Santa Barbara, USA
Kate Kenski University of Arizona, USA
Young Yun Kim University of Oklahoma, USA
Spiro Kiousis University of Florida, USA
Jan Kleinnijenhuis Free University, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Tetsuro Kobayashi City University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
Thomas Koch Johannes Gutenberg University at Mainz, Germany
Ascan Koerner University of Minnesota, USA
Matt Koschmann University of Colorado Boulder, USA
Nicole Krämer University Duisburg-Essen, Germany
Chih-Hui Lai National Yang Ming Chiao Tung University, Taiwan
Sophie Lecheler University of Vienna, Austria
Andrew Ledbetter Texas Christian University, USA
Andrew M. Ledbetter Texas Christian University, USA
Chul-joo Lee Seoul National University, South Korea
Eun-Ju Lee Seoul National University, South Korea
Francis Lee The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
Siyue Li Zhejiang University, China
Marie-Louise Mares University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA
Dana Mastro University of California, Santa Barbara, USA
Gina M. Masullo University of Texas, Austin, USA
Jorg Matthes University of Vienna, Austria
Patrick C. Meirick University of Oklahoma, USA
Jingbo Meng Michigan State University, USA
Miriam Metzger University of California Santa Barbara, USA
Peter R. Monge University of Southern California, USA
Patricia Moy University of Washington, USA
Xiaoli Nan University of Maryland, USA
German Neubaum University of Duisburg-Essen, Germany
Katherine Ognyanova Rutgers University, USA
Mary Beth Oliver Pennsylvania State University, USA
Zhongdang Pan University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA
Charles Pavitt University of Delaware, USA
Jochen Peter University of Amsterdam, Netherlands
Andrew Pilny University of Kentucky, USA
Bruce E. Pinkleton Washington State University, USA
Brian Quick University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA
Stephen Rains University of Arizona, USA
Nancy Rhodes Michigan State University, USA
Rajiv N. Rimal George Washington University, USA
Emma Rodero Pompeu Fabra University, Spain
Hernando Rojas University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA
Michael Elwood Roloff Northwestern University, USA
Patricia Rossini University of Glasgow, Scotland
Ann Rousseau KU Leuven, Belgium
Erica Scharrer University of Massachusetts, USA
Paul Schrodt Texas Christian University, USA
Chris Segrin University of Arizona, USA
Liesel Sharabi Arizona State University, USA
Cuihua Shen University of California, Davis, USA
Lijiang Shen Pennsylvania State University, USA
Pamela J. Shoemaker Syracuse University, USA
Patricia Sias University of Arizona, USA
Marko Skoric City University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
Michael Slater The Ohio State University, USA
Dongyoung Sohn Hanyang University, South Korea
Denise Solomon Pennsylvania State University, USA
Michael T. Stephenson Texas A&M University, USA
S. Shyam Sundar Pennsylvania State University, USA
Alex Susskind Cornell University, USA
David Tewksbury University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA
Jennifer A. Theiss Rutgers University, USA
Catalina Toma University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA
Patti M. Valkenburg University of Amsterdam, Netherlands
Brandon Van Der Heide James Madison College, Michigan State University, East Lansing, USA
Toni van der Meer University of Amsterdam, Netherlands
Lyn Van Swol University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA
Vincent R. Waldron Arizona State University, USA
Nathan Walter Northwestern University, USA
Joseph B. Walther University of California, Santa Barbara, USA
Matthew Weber University of Minnesota USA
Brian Weeks University of Michigan, USA
Ran Wei The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
Steven Wilson University of South Florida, USA
Stephan Winter University of Kaiserslautern-Landau, Germany
Janet Yang State University of New York at Buffalo, USA
Sung-Un Yang Indiana University, USA
Y. Connie Yuan Cornell University, USA
  • Academic Search - Premier
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  • Clarivate Analytics: Current Contents - Physical, Chemical & Earth Sciences
  • Clarivate Analytics: Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI)
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  • EBSCO: Human Resources Abstracts
  • EBSCO: Humanities International Complete
  • EBSCO: Political Science Complete
  • EBSCO: Violence & Abuse Abstracts
  • ERIC (Education Resources Information Center)
  • ERIC Current Index to Journals in Education (CIJE)
  • Family & Society Studies Worldwide (NISC)
  • Family Index Database
  • Film Literature Index
  • Gale: Diversity Studies Collection
  • Humanities Source
  • ISI Basic Social Sciences Index
  • MLA International Bibliography
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  • OmniFile: Full Text Mega Edition (H.W. Wilson)
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  • Standard Periodical Directory (SPD)
  • TOPICsearch - Ebsco
  • Translation Studies Abstracts/Bibliography of Translation Studies
  • Wilson Social Sciences Index Retrospective
  • Manuscripts for consideration in Communication Research should be submitted electronically via Manuscript Central ( Authors will be required to set up an online account in the SageTRACK system at this site. For general inquiries, please contact the Communication Research editorial office (email


    The co-editors and editorial board make every effort to review manuscripts thoroughly and promptly. One of the co-editors initially determines whether the content of the manuscript is appropriate for the journal and whether there is sufficient publication potential to proceed with anonymous reviews. Manuscripts that do not pass this initial screening are returned immediately. If a manuscript is sent out for the review process it is typically completed in eight to ten weeks. Authors are encouraged to obtain and incorporate editorial advice of their colleagues prior to submitting their work to Communication Research.


    Submissions should consist of a cover file and separate manuscript file.


    The cover file should include:

    • The manuscript title.
    • Author(s), affiliation, contact information, and e-mail address.
    • Any acknowledgments.
    • Author biographies (100 words maximum for all authors).


    The manuscript file should:

    • Include an abstract of no more than 150 words.
    • List 4 to 5 keywords.
    • Be de-identified: It is important that authors’ names do not appear anywhere other than on the cover file (if questions arise in specific circumstances, when de-identification might be more revealing than including the authors’ names, please contact the editorial office).
    • Be submitted as MS Word files (Windows Vista users, please save files down to the pre-2007, “.doc” versions).
    • Be prepared in accordance with the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, 7th edition.
    • In particular, the entire manuscript should be double spaced, and manuscripts should have 1 inch margins on all four sides.
    • References should be carefully edited to ensure consistency with APA guidelines and include DOI numbers.
    • Statistics and statistical analyses should be reported in line with APA guidelines including standard deviations and effect sizes when applicable.  Confidence intervals must be reported when bootstrapping is utilized.  Further, inclusion of correlation matrices as online appendix is strongly recommended (as this information facilitates meta-analyses).
    • Figures and tables should be placed at the end of the manuscript file and numbered in the order they appear in text. Tables should be editable, formatted in line with APA guidelines, and have a clear title.
    • An in-text callout (example: “[Figure 1 here]”) should be inserted on a separate line just after the paragraph where each figure or table appears.
    • All figures should be submitted in the original program in which they were created (JPG, TIFF, or EPS; Microsoft Application Files are acceptable for line art).
    • Any scanned images should be set at 1200 dpi for line art and 300 dpi for color or grayscale.
    • Appendices should be used sparingly and should be lettered to set them apart from numbered tables/figures.
    • Online appendices can now be used and do not count towards the 12,800 word count limit. They are hosted on the Communication Research site and linked to the article metadata and viewable in the TOC and article page itself. Upon submission, authors can denote appendices as "Online Appendix" and otherwise simply include them in the submission files, while following APA guidance for appendices.
    • It is recommended that the paper is below 12,800 words in length; authors may provide supplementary materials to be published later as online appendices


    Previously copyrighted material:

    • Authors are responsible for gaining permission to reproduce any copyrighted material in their submissions, including images and quotations of more than 300 words.
    • If another manuscript drawing on the same dataset has been submitted or published previously, please explain how it differs from this manuscript in your cover letter.
    • Permission in email format is acceptable.
    • Authors may also submit a Copyright Permission Request Form completed by the copyright holder.
    • Payment of any fees the copyright holder may request is the author’s responsibility.
    • Because obtaining reprint permission can be time consuming, it is recommended that authors begin this process as soon as possible.


    Submission of a manuscript implies commitment to publish in the journal:

    • Authors submitting manuscripts to the journal should not simultaneously submit them to another journal.
    • Authors should not submit manuscripts that have been published elsewhere in substantially similar form or with substantially similar content.
    • If another manuscript drawing on the same dataset has been submitted or published previously, please explain how it differs from this manuscript in your cover letter.
    • Authors in doubt about what constitutes prior publication should consult the Communication Research editorial office (email


    Language editing support:

    • Authors who want to refine the use of English in their manuscripts might consider utilizing the services of SPi, a non-affiliated company that offers Professional Editing Services to authors of journal articles in the areas of science, technology, medicine or the social sciences.
    • SPi specializes in editing and correcting English-language manuscripts written by authors with a primary language other than English.
    • Visit for more information about SPi’s Professional Editing Services, pricing, and turn-around times, or to obtain a free quote or submit a manuscript for language polishing. Please be aware that Sage has no affiliation with SPi and makes no endorsement of the company.
    • An author’s use of SPi’s services in no way guarantees that his or her submission will ultimately be accepted.
    • Any arrangement an author enters into will be exclusively between the author and SPi, and any costs incurred are the sole responsibility of the author.


    Open Science Badges:

    Articles submitted to Communication Research and accepted for publication after 7/1/2019 are eligible to earn badges that recognize open scientific practices: publicly available data, material, or preregistered research plans. You can also find information on the Open Science Framework at

    To apply for one or more badges acknowledging open practices, please check the box(es) corresponding to the desired badge(s) in the online submission form and provide the information requested in the relevant sections. To qualify for a badge, you must provide a URL, doi, or other permanent path for accessing the specified information in a public, open-access repository. Qualifying public, open-access repositories are committed to preserving data, materials, and/or registered analysis plans and keeping them publicly accessible via the web in perpetuity. Examples include the Open Science Framework (OSF) and the various Dataverse networks. Hundreds of other qualifying data/materials repositories are listed at Preregistration of an analysis plan must take place via a publicly accessible registry system (e.g., OSF, or other trial registries in the WHO Registry Network, institutional registration systems). Personal websites and most departmental websites do not qualify as repositories.

    Authors who wish to publicly post third-party material in their data, materials, or preregistration plan must have the proper authority or permission agreement in order to do so.

    There are circumstances in which it is not possible or advisable to share any or all data, materials, or a research plan publicly. For example, there are cases in which sharing participants’ data could violate confidentiality. If you would like your article to include an explanation of such circumstances and/or provide links to any data or materials you have made available—even if not under conditions eligible to earn a badge—you may write an alternative note that will be published in a note in the article.



    If you or your funder wish your article to be freely available online to nonsubscribers immediately upon publication (gold open access), you can opt for it to be included in Sage Choice, subject to the payment of a publication fee. The manuscript submission and peer review procedure is unchanged. On acceptance of your article, you will be asked to let Sage know directly if you are choosing Sage Choice. To check journal eligibility and the publication fee, please visit Sage Choice. For more information on open access options and compliance at Sage, including self/author archiving deposits (green open access) visit Sage Publishing Policies on our Journal Author Gateway.

    As part of our commitment to ensuring an ethical, transparent and fair peer review process Sage is a supporting member of ORCID, the Open Researcher and Contributor ID. ORCID provides a unique and persistent digital identifier that distinguishes researchers from every other researcher, even those who share the same name, and, through integration in key research workflows such as manuscript and grant submission, supports automated linkages between researchers and their professional activities, ensuring that their work is recognized.

    The collection of ORCID iDs from corresponding authors is now part of the submission process of this journal. If you already have an ORCID iD you will be asked to associate that to your submission during the online submission process. We also strongly encourage all co-authors to link their ORCID ID to their accounts in our online peer review platforms. It takes seconds to do: click the link when prompted, sign into your ORCID account and our systems are automatically updated. Your ORCID iD will become part of your accepted publication’s metadata, making your work attributable to you and only you. Your ORCID iD is published with your article so that fellow researchers reading your work can link to your ORCID profile and from there link to your other publications.

    If you do not already have an ORCID iD please follow this link to create one or visit our ORCID homepage to learn more.

    For more information, please refer to the Sage Manuscript Submission Guidelines.

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