Travis L Dixon

Personal profile

Personal profile

Professor Dixon received his B.A. in Communication Studies from UCLA.  He then went on to receive his M.A. and doctorate from the University of California, Santa Barbara.  Professor Dixon is a media effects scholar who specializes in investigating the prevalence of stereotypes in the mass media and the impact of stereotypical imagery on audience members.  He was the 2013 Visiting Philanthropy Faculty Scholar at the Clinton School of Public Service.  In 2020, he became the first African American scholar inducted as a fellow of the International Communication Association, one of the highest honors in the Communication discipline.  In addition to the dozens of articles Dr. Dixon has published in leading Communication journals, he has received 7 top paper awards from the National Communication Association and the International Communication Association. Dr. Dixon also serves on the editorial boards of some of the leading journals in his field, including Communication Monographs, Communication Research, Human Communication Research, Howard Journal of Communications, Media Psychology, and the Journal of Broadcasting & Electronic Media. Much of Dr. Dixon's work examines racial stereotyping in television news. His more recent investigations scrutinize the content and effects of stereotypes and counter-stereotypes in major news events, social media, and musical contexts.  Currently, he is a full professor and director of graduate studies in the Department of Communication, and he has partnered with community groups attempting to address racial inequity.

Research Interests

media stereotypes, content and effects of traditional/digital media


Ph.D., 1998, Communication, University of California, Santa Barbara
M.A, 1994, Communication, University of California, Santa Barbara
B.A., 1992, Communication, University of California, Los Angeles

Honors & Awards

2019, Inducted as International Communication Association Fellow
2015, Top Four Paper Award in the Mass Communication Division, National Communication Association
2015, Top Three Paper Award in the Multicultural Division, Broadcast Education Association
2013, Visiting Scholar, Clinton School of Public Service , U. of Arkansas scholarly investigation of stereotypical media content on network/cable news, Funded
2011, Excellence in Mentorship Award, Presented by UIUC Communication Leaders
2008, Top Paper Award in the Intergroup Communication Interest Group, International Communication Association


2016-2017, PI, Examining Systemic Distortions and Inaccuracies in the News and Opinion Media Framing of Black Families, Family Story
2005-2008, Co-PI, Police-Community Relations RAND Corporation in Cincinnati, Funded


Communication 277 (Lower Division Course): Introduction to the Mediated Communication
Communication 429 (Upper Division Course): Race and the Mass Media
Communication 529 (Graduate Course): Introduction to Mass Communication Theory

Office Address

3001 Lincoln Hall, MC-456
702 S Wright
Urbana, IL 61801

Office Phone


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