Dr. Maria Len-Ríos
About: Dr. Len-Ríos teaches public relations and cross-cultural journalism courses. In 2016, she co-authored a textbook,”Cross-Cultural Journalism: Communicating Strategically About Diversity,” with Dr. Earnest Perry (Routledge/Taylor& Francis. http://www.routledge.com/books/details/9781138784895 )
- Ph.D., Journalism, University of Missouri
- M.S., Journalism, Grady College
- B.A., Speech, International Studies and Spanish Literature, Macalester College
Research Interests and Activities
Dr. Len-Ríos’ research focuses on inequalities in public relations and health communication. Together with colleagues and doctoral students, she has earned more than 9 Top Paper awards in national and international academic conferences across multiple areas – public relations, health and science communication, mass communication & society, popular culture and magazine research. Len-Ríos has collaborated on interdisciplinary grant work, including a Washington University/Missouri School of Journalism NIH Center for Excellence in Cancer Communication Research. She has also been lead PI on the LASER project through the MU Mizzou Advantage program. She is an affiliate of the MU Center for Children and Families Across Cultures as part of the LASER collaborative, which is dedicated to studying the well-being of U.S. Latino adolescents. In addition, she serves as an inaugural board member of The Herschel S. Horowitz Center for Health Literacy in the School of Public Health at the University of Maryland (2014-2016).
Dr. Len-Ríos is a member of the editorial boards of the Journal of Public Relations Research, Public Relations Review, the International Journal of Strategic Communication, Communication Yearbook, and The Howard Journal of Communications. She serves as a member of the Publications Committee for the Association for Education in Journalism & Mass Communication (2013-2016), which oversees the flagship journals of the association. She is a former head of the Communication Theory & Methodology Division of the AEJMC (2007-2008). She is also a member of the International Communication Association and the Society for Research on Adolescence.
Abstract: This study examines whether adolescent motivations for social media use, social comparison tendencies and gender are related to online aggression victimization and/or perpetration. Results of a hierarchical multiple regression conducted on data from a national cross-sectional survey of middle adolescents (N = 340) reveals that social media use, romantic motivations, social belongingness motivations and […]Read More
Abstract: This study, in the context of encouraging participants to enroll in a company’s employee wellness program, uses gain-loss framing (Rothman & Salovey, 1997) and social comparison theory (Festinger, 1954) to examine the effects of messages on participant perceptions of self-efficacy for maintaining a healthy weight, consuming healthful foods and body satisfaction. A 2 (framing: […]Read More
Abstract: Fortune magazine publishes its list of the “100 Best Companies to Work For,” and its ranking formula for evaluating companies includes measures of “…overall job satisfaction,” as well as and evaluation of company “pay and benefits programs” (Fortune, n.d.). At many companies, a tangible benefit includes making employee wellness programs available to improve employee […]Read More
Abstract: The objectives of this project are to (1) assess the acceptability of the Problem Recognition in Illness Self-Management (PRISM) tool, a family-provider communication intervention, to improve medication adherence, and (2)examine the feasibility of using a novel method, in the form of a smartphone app, to measure medication adherence inadolescents with chronic respiratory illnesses. Our […]Read More
Abstract: Cross-Cultural Journalism offers journalists and other communication professionals the conceptual framework and practical know-how they need to report and communicate effectively about difference. Built on the hands-on reporting style and curriculum pioneered by the University of Missouri, this introductory textbook teaches students how to write about and communicate with people of backgrounds that may […]Read More
Abstract: Hispanics, or Latinos, are the largest U.S. minority group and are poised to play a key role in U.S. elections. Public relations practitioners who work in politics should be interested in what motivates young Latinos to participate in politics. This study reports the findings of a national non probability online survey conducted in July 2015 […]Read More
Dr. Len-Ríos has taught courses in cross-cultural journalism, public relations, public relations writing, strategic campaigns, master’s thesis seminar, quantitative methods, mass media seminar and doctoral seminar courses.
Before coming to UGA, Dr. Len-Ríos served 10 years as a faculty member at the Missouri School of Journalism on the strategic communication faculty, 2 years at the William Allen White School of Journalism and Mass Communications at the University of Kansas, and 2 years at Georgia Southern University. Her students have won first place in the Arthur W. Page Society Case Study Competition in Corporate Communication.
Awards and Fellowships
PRSA Health Academy/Quinnipiac University Paper Competition Winner, 2010