School of Liberal Arts/Department of Communication Studies
Katharine J. Head is an associate professor in the Department of Communication Studies as well as affiliate faculty with the Fairbanks Center for Medical Ethics and adjunct faculty in the Medical Humanities and Health Studies Program. She currently serves as chair of the advisory committee for the Indiana Immunization Coalition and is a member of the steering committee for the Health Communication Working Group at the American Public Health Association. Her research focuses on health communication, and much of her scholarship has focused on how individuals communicate about vaccines and cancer screenings in the public and clinical contexts.
She has published in journals such as Health Communication, Qualitative Health Research, Preventive Medicine, and Human Vaccines and Immunotherapeutics. As a translational scholar, she also disseminates her work to broader audiences such as schools, clinics and community organizations. She regularly teaches classes on interpersonal communication, research methods, patient-provider communication, eHealth communication and health communication campaigns.
Head earned her Ph.D. in communication from the University of Kentucky in 2013, with a minor concentration in public health.
Areas of Expertise
Health communication, vaccination, young adults, cancer screening, social and behavioral science, health campaigns, message design.
In the news:
- Indiana Chapter of the Red Cross: Vaccine Coalition Video
- WFYI: “All In Indiana,” COVID-19 update
- Harvard Law Bill of Health: From “A Spoonful of Sugar” to Operation Warp Speed: COVID-19 Vaccines and Their Metaphors
- WSYX: As vaccine distribution nears, officials try to assuage Black workers’ skepticism
- WRTV: COVID vaccine: What questions should you be asking?
- IU Research Impact: Communicating the importance of COVID-19 vaccinations
- Society of Behavioral Medicine: We Need to Start Talking About the SARS-CoV-2 Vaccine NOW
- Pharmaceutical Technology: Politicising the pandemic: what are the consequences of Trump’s rhetoric?
- Bloomington Herald-Times: Colleges could help students form COVID prevention habits
- Indiana Public Media: Pediatricians playing catch-up after pandemic decreases children’s immunizations
- PLOS Science Communications blog: HPV Vaccination is Not Just for Kids: Communicating Effectively to Promote Cancer Prevention on College Campuses
- HPV World online newsletter: Why are some parents so hesitant about HPV vaccination? And what can we do about it?