As part of the Department of Communication Studies, research in the Communication and Identity Lab (CI-LAB) focuses on identity and difference in personal relationships, families, and  communities with the goal of understanding how communication facilitates (a) relational and community solidarity, (b) identity development or changes in worldviews and social attitudes, and (c) individual well-being as it relates to identity complexity and/or experiences of bias and discrimination. Through the Intergroup Dialogue Project, we also focus on how we can navigate differences to address important social issues through sustained and structured interactions.

Follow us on Twitter: @CommIdentityLab

News and Updates
  • Congratulations to undergraduate student, Sarah Van de Hare, for completing her research on "Social Identity Complexity, Tolerance, Communication, and Well-Being."
  • PhD student, Renca Dunn, recently completed a project focusing on bias toward Deaf individuals in the health care systment. You can view "Robin's Story" here
  • Congratulations to undergraduate students, Luta Menard and Nia Martinez, and their graduate student project advisor, Megan Cardwell, for having the paper, "Examining the Links Between Family Communication and Racial Justice Activism in the United States," selected for presentation at the annual conference of the International Communication Association. 
  • Recent alum, Dr. Mackensie Minniear, discusses her research on racial identity development. 
  • Dr. Jordan Soliz recently presented a webinar, "Intergroup Contact in College & University Settings: Structuring Programs to Reduce Bias " for the Office of Diversity & Inclusion and "Engaging in Conversation about Racial Inequities and Injustice" to the Academic Advising Association.
  • Doctoral student Megan Cardwell discusses sibling connections for a local parenting group in Lincoln, "Parenting Across Color Lines." View the video here
  • Dr. Jordan Soliz and Dr. Colleen Warner Colaner's new edited volume, Navigating Relationships in the Modern Family: Communication, Identity, and Differenceis now available as an e-book. 
  • Doctoral candidate Morgan April and Dr. Jordan Soliz have a forthcoming chapter, "Family as.. Social Identity," in the volume, Family Communication As… Metaphors for Family Communication
  • Megan Cardwell's research on critical incidents in multiethnic-racial identity development was recently published in the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships. 
  • Doctoral student Megan Cardwell and Dr. Jordan Soliz recently published research on sibling communication and multiethnic-racial identity development. Click here to access the article. 
  • Mackensie Minniear will be joining the Department of Communication Studies at the University of Georgia in Fall 2020 as an assistant professor. Congratulations!
  • Doctoral candidates Toni Morgan and Mackensie Minniear along with Drs. Jordan Soliz and Gretchen Bergquist (PhD '18) recently published their research on communication accomodation and identity tensions in interfaith parent-child relationships. Access the article here
  • Dr. Jordan Soliz organized a preconference for the National Communication Association annual convention: Expanding our Understanding of Family Communication: Ethnic-Racial and Global Diversity in Scholarship and Teaching.
  • Graduate students Morgan April ("Perceived Severity of Chronic Illness Diagnosis and Psychosocial Well-Being: Exploring Magnitude and Affective Dimensions of Change in Layers of Identity") and Megan Cardwell ("Examining the Role of Sibling Interaction in Multiethnic-racial Identity Development") presented their research at the recent convention of the National Communication Association. 
  • Mackensie Minnear's research on socialization of racial identity is now available in the Journal of Family Communication
  • Research by CI-Lab alumni, Drs. Kaitlin Phillips (PhD '17) and Gretchen Bergquist (PhD '18), and Dr. Jordan Soliz focusing on the relationship between communication patterns and identity in families in the United States was recently published in Journal of Communication. 
  • Congratulations to Megan Cardwell for a successful defense of her thesis focusing on siblings and multiethnic-raical identity development.  
  • Congratulations to doctoral candidate, Mackensie Minniear, for her top paper on socialization of racial identity in black families presented at the annual convention of the National Communication Association in Salt Lake City.
  • Research on identity tensions and refugee experiences was recently published in Western Journal of Communication.
  • Dr. Gretchen Bergquist (PhD '18) joined the faculty in the Department of Communication Studies at California State University-San Bernardino and CI-Lab alum, Dr. Kaitlin Phillips (PhD '17), is now an assistant professor in the Department of Language, Philosophy, and Communication at Utah State University.
  • Congratulations to Gretchen Bergquist for being named a Graduate Student Poster Competition winner at UNL's Spring Research Fair.
  • Doctoral students Mackensie Minnier and Gretchen Bergquist had their research accepted for the International Communication Association Preconference on Inclusivity and Family Communication Research.
  • Read a write up of our research in Nebraska Today. 
  • Research on communication accommodation and identity gaps in interfaith families was presented at the International Communication Association's annual convention in Prague (May 2018). You can access slides of the presentation here
  • Mackensie Minniear and Gretchen Bergquist presented at the UNL's Minority Health Disparities Initiative conference in February.
  • Dr. Jordan Soliz and and Dr. Kaitlin Phillips (PhD '17) publish a new essay on diversity in family communication research. 
  • Dr. Jordan Soliz, Sierra Cronan, Gretchen Bergquist, Dr. Audra Nuru (PhD '14), and Dr. Christine Rittenour (PhD '09) publish a new article on experiences of multiethnic-racial individuals in Identity: An International Journal of Theory and Research. Access to the article here.  
  • Dr. Kaitlin Phillips joins the faculty at Utah State University as a post-doc.  
  • Current PhD student Gretchen Bergquist was selected to participate in the National Communication Associations' doctoral honors seminar at Ohio University during Summer '17.
  • Dr. Jordan Soliz published "Religious pluralistic language in a computer-mediated context: Effects of intergroup salience and religious orientation" in Communication Research Reports  with CI-Lab alumni Drs. Jennifer Kienzle and Chad Wertley