Texas Tech University

Coy Callison, Ph.D., was named an Integrated Scholar for 2022 by the Office of the Provost

James D. Loss

March 28, 2022

Coy Callison, Ph.D.

Coy Callison, Ph.D., professor & associate dean of graduate studies, was recently announced as an Integrated Scholar for 2022 by the Office of the Provost. Integrated Scholars combine their research, service, and teaching into a synergetic device for the benefit of their students, colleagues, and institution.

For Callison, water scarcity and water conversation occupy most of his research agenda. Whether he is sorting data from a recent study or having a conversation with West Texas Farmer, Callison brings his practical experiences into the classroom and allows his students to observe the practical implications of their lectures.

“I just think it's a much better way to learn,” Callison said. “I like to call it a build-the-birdbox-classroom. Let's get some lumber and put the thing together, rather than me showing you a diagram of how you put the thing together.”

Although Callison did not make a conscious choice to teach in his “birdbox” method, he says it is something that happens naturally.

“It just makes sense, right? I'm not only a teacher. I run studies. I gather data and talk to people in relevant fields and industries. Well, if my job is to educate students, why wouldn't I show them numbers from the dataset I just finished last week? Why wouldn't I let them explore and discuss those things?”

Callison attributes his method of integration to his experience as a faculty member, noting it can be difficult to create cohesion between responsibilities in the early tenure years. The award was both a surprise and compliment to Callison.

“It's nice to be recognized as someone who is doing [integration] well,” Callison said. “I think the students appreciate a little bit of real-world in the classroom.”

Callison's research areas focus on source-message factors and their interaction with cognitive tendencies, as well as saliency factors underlying the attentiveness of individual audience members. Most recently, he investigates strategic communication in science with a focus on extreme weather and water scarcity.