Associate Professor, Public Relations
About: She teaches public relations, cultural studies, and qualitative methods. Scholarship foci: telenovelas, culture and society.
Ph.D., Mass Communication, University of Georgia
M.A., Mass Communication, University of Georgia
B.S., Computer Science, Georgia Institute of Technology
Research Interests and Activities
Dr. Acosta-Alzuru specializes in critical and cultural studies, international communication and women's studies. She is the author of the books Venezuela es una Telenovela (Alfa, 2007), La incandescencia de las cosas: Conversaciones con Leonardo Padrón (Alfa, 2013) and Telenovela Adentro (Alfa, 2015), and has authored or co-authored articles in Journalism and Mass Communication Monographs, The Journal of Communication, Critical Studies in Media Communication, Journal of Public Relations Research, Popular Communication, International Journal of Cultural Studies, Journal of Communication Inquiry, Mass Communication and Society, Learning to Teach: What you need to know to develop a successful career as a public relations educator, The Global Dynamic of News and The Women's International Studies Encyclopedia. In addition, she has presented her work at numerous mass communication conferences.
Dr. Acosta-Alzuru teaches public relations, graphic communication and cultural studies. She teaches both an honors seminar (in Spanish) and an undergraduate course (in English) about telenovelas, culture and society.
A native of Caracas, Venezuela, Dr. Acosta-Alzuru taught previously at the Universidad Catolica Andres Bello in Caracas.
2000-2001 UGA Research Foundation junior faculty grant for: "Telenovelas: A Comprehensive Study of the World's Most Watched TV Genre"
2004-2005 Center for Humanities and Arts junior faculty grant for: "Producing and Consuming a Telenovela in a Time of Crisis: The Case of Cosita Rica"
2005-2006 Center for Humanities Research Fellowship
2008-2009 Grady College Faculty Support Grant "The production and local reception of a telenovela when global distribution matters more than local consumption"
2015 Fulbright Specialist Grant to teach at the Universidad de Chile in Santiago, Chile
Awards and Fellowships
2001-2002 Lilly Teaching Fellow. One of nine assistant professors selected to this prestigious university program. Participants are exceptional teachers who are interested in further developing the teaching and learning environment in the courses they teach.
Top Three Paper. (2001) Educators Academy of the Public Relations Society of America.
Top Faculty-Student Paper. (2001) Public Relations division of the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication, Washington, DC.
James E. Murphy Memorial Award. (2001) Top faculty paper in the Cultural and Critical Studies division of the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication, Washington, DC.
2002 Roland Page Teaching Award
2003 Advertising/Public Relations Department Teacher of the Year.
2003 University of Georgia's Richard B. Russell Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching Award.
2004 Roland Page Teaching Award
2007 Darwin Davis Award Inaugural recipient. The award was established by an endowment from Dean Cully Clark and his wife, Mary, to annually recognize a member of the Grady College faculty or staff whose performance reflects those qualities of dedication and friendship that best capture the Grady Spirit.
2008 Roland Page Teaching Award Each year the graduate students of the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication select a faculty member who exemplifies the high standards of teaching and concern for students demonstrated by Roland Page.
Top Two Faculty Paper. (2008) Cultural and Critial Studies division of the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication, Chicago, IL.
Professorship is the University of Georgia's highest teaching honor. 2009 Inducted in the University of Georgia's Teaching Academy.
2010 Josiah Meigs Distinguished Teaching Professorship- The Meigs
2013, 2014 One of three national finalists for the Scripps Howard Journalism and Mass Communication Teacher of the Year.
2015 Scripps Howard/AEJMC Journalism and Mass Communication Teacher of the Year