Dr. Kristen LeBlanc Farris
Director of COMM 1310 &
Ph.D. University of Texas at Austin
M.A. Texas State University
B.A. Stephen F. Austin State University
Interpersonal Communication, Health Communication, Communication Theory, Research Methods
Office: Centennial Hall 326
About Dr. LeBlanc Farris
Kristen Farris is a Senior Lecturer and serves as the Associate Basic Course Director for the fundamentals of human communication course (COMM 1310). In this role, Kristen is primarily responsible for assessing student learning and teaching effectiveness. Kristen and co-author, Dr. Marian Houser, were awarded with the Program of Distinction Award in 2010 and the Program of Excellence Award in 2011 from the National Communication Association for their work with the basic course. Kristen teaches both large lecture and online sections of COMM 1310 and several other courses including: interpersonal communication, communication theory, and empirical research methods.
Kristen's primary research interests center on the ways in which individuals use communication to cope with difficult relational events and negotiate negative relational turning points through the management of difficult conversations. As part of this line of research, she is interested in examining relational partners’ communication about surrounding life stressors or chronic illnesses and how that communication influences both relational and health outcomes.
Kristen’s secondary area of research highlights the importance of instructor-student communication and assessment of student communication competency. She has received one top paper award (in 2014) and two top three paper panel awards (in 2010 and 2013) from the Instructional Communication Division of the Eastern Communication Association. Kristen has also published her instructional communication research in the Basic Communication Course Annual.