Second Brown Bag of the Semester – September 7, 2012

The audio from last Friday’s seminar can be found here: Brown Bag – September 7, 2012 (Annie Lang)

Annie Lang

“If not effects, WHAT?”

At ICA last year, I suggested that Effects Research might be considered to have been the first Kuhnian paradigm of the nascent discipline of mass communication and that, as a paradigm, it is now failing. The argument was made that we are now a discipline in crisis undergoing a period of extraordinary (as in non-paradigmatic) science and looking for a new paradigmatic theory/achievement. Joe Cappella asked me, “Well Annie, If not effects, what?” This talk is my response to Joe. I will present a new and largely untested theoretical approach embracing a new set of assumptions as a potential approach to guide future research in communication. This new approach is grounded in evolution, ecological perception, and dynamic systems theories and seeks to develop general communication theory applicable to mass, interpersonal, and all other types of human communication. I look forward to hearing people’s responses and critiques of these ideas.

Annie Lang, Ph.D. (UW – Madison), is a Distinguished Professor of Telecommunications and Cognitive Science at Indiana University.  Her research focuses on studying motivated cognition and media, with a long term goal of better understanding the interplay among parts of the dynamic system comprised of the embodied mind and the mediated message.  Her theoretical work focuses on extending the scope of the limited capacity model of mediated message processing (LC4MP), which seeks to identify structural and content aspects of all media which elicit automatic motivational and cognitive responses in media users and understand the interaction, over time, of those automatic processes with the motivated cognitive system, the individual differences embodied in media users and the user’s long term and momentary goals and intentions.  Lang, who began teaching at IU in 1995, has amassed over 75 refereed publications, 14 book chapters, nearly 150 refereed convention papers and more than 40 invited talks, many of which were presented outside the United States. In 2006, she was elected a fellow of the International Communications Association, and, in 2009, she was the recipient of ICA’s prestigious Steven H. Chaffee Career Productivity Award.

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