Autumn Shafer

College of Media and Communication

Autumn Shafer

Dr. Autumn Shafer serves as assistant professor of public relations. Her research spans the health communication spectrum, including:

  • the design and evaluation of strategic health campaigns
  • examining the effects of mass media on health-related attitudes and behaviors
  • investigating how individuals process persuasive health messages

She approaches research questions from an interdisciplinary perspective that draws from communication, public health, psychology and consumer behavior.

Recently professor Shafer helped to develop and evaluate messages on two funded social marketing campaigns focusing on preventing cervical cancer and easing caregiver burden for parents of children with eating disorders. Much of her research is focused on adolescents and sexual health. Her experimental research explores the psychological mechanisms that underlie message processing and the persuasive effects of narratives.

Professor Shafer's professional background is in public relations and political communications. She has worked as a political campaign manager, field director and state legislative aide. Professor Shafer received her Ph.D. in mass communication and a certificate in interdisciplinary health communication from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She completed a master's in public relations and a bachelor's in speech communication/political science at Washington State University.