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College of Information and Communications

Faculty and Staff

Andrea Tanner, Ph.D.

Title: Director, School of Journalism and Mass Communications
Associate Dean, College of Information and Communications
College of Information and Communications
Phone: 803-777-4979
Fax: 803-777-4103

School of Journalism and Mass Communications
800 Sumter Street, Room 322B
Columbia, SC 29208


Curriculum Vitae



B.A., Broadcast Journalism, University of Georgia
M.A., Mass Communications, University of South Carolina
Ph.D., Mass Communications, University of South Carolina


Dr. Tanner's research expertise is in media communication of health information, specifically focusing on how communication practitioners identify, select, and develop health messages, and how this information contributes to the public’s health beliefs, attitudes, and perceptions. She has extensive experience evaluating health messages in the media, including broadcast, print and new media resources and use quantitative and qualitative research methods in an effort to evaluate how audiences access and comprehend health content from various communication channels. As a former broadcast journalist, she is also interested in research focused on journalism practice and journalism education. 

As a committee member and student advisor for the interdisciplinary Certificate of Graduate Study in Health Communication, Tanner works with faculty and graduate students from disciplines across the university in the area of science and health communication.  

Tanner recently served as Principal Investigator on a grant funded by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation focusing on assessing South Carolinians’ knowledge, perceptions, and communications sources of the Affordable Care Act. Read more »

Recent Publications

Tanner, A., Bergeron, C.D., Zheng, Y., Friedman, D.B., Kim, S. & Foster, C. (In press). Communicating effectively about clinical trials with African American communities: A comparison of African American and White information sources and needs. Health Promotion Practice.

Tanner, A., Owens, O.L., Sisson, D., Kornegay, V., Bergeron, C.D., Friedman, D.B., Weis, M., Patterson, L., & Windham, T. (In press). “Dodging the debate and dealing with the facts: Using research and community partnerships to promote understanding of the Affordable Care Act.” The Library Quarterly.

Tanner, A., Friedman, D.B. & Zheng, Y. (2015). Influences on the Construction of Health News: The reporting practices of local television health journalists. Journal of Broadcasting and Electronic Media. 59(2), 359-376.doi: 10.1080/08838151.2015.1029123

Tanner, A., Kim, S-H., Friedman, D.B., Foster, C. & Bergeron, C. (2015).“Barriers to Medical Research Participation as Perceived by Clinical Trial Investigators: Communicating with Rural and African American Communities,” Journal of Health Communication. 20(1), 88-96. doi: 10.1080/10810730.2014.908985 

Kim, S.-H., Tanner, A., Friedman, D. B., Foster, C., & Bergeron, C. D. (2015). Barriers to Clinical Trial Participation: Comparing Perceptions and Knowledge of African American and White South Carolinians. Journal of Health Communication, 20(7), 816-826. doi: 10.1080/10810730.2015.1018599.

Tanner, A., Kim, S.-H., Friedman, D. B., Foster, C., & Bergeron, C. (2015). Promoting Clinical Research to Medically Underserved Communities:  Current Practices and Perceptions about Clinical Trial Recruiting Strategies. Contemporary Clinical Trials. 41(15), 39-44. doi: 10.1016/j.cct.2014.12.010


Dr. Tanner is an active member of The Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (AEJMC)’s Communicating Science, Health, Environment and Risk Division (formerly the Science Communication Interest Group), serving as the group’s chair from 2007-2008.


A native of Savannah, Ga., Dr. Tanner loves to travel and has served as a co-leader and instructor for the school's Multimedia Maymester in Munich. She has two school-aged children and loves activities that take her outdoors, including running, hiking and swimming.