Interdisciplinary Focus

Communication is a field that serves as a crossroads to many others—psychology, political science, sociology, and history, to name a few. At Stanford we celebrate the interdisciplinary nature of research and leverage the integrated nature of the university.

First and foremost, our department is situated within the larger school of Humanities and Sciences rather than within its own, freestanding school. This allows our department to collaborate with others especially easily.

For example, doctoral students are required to have a member from outside the department on their dissertation committees. In the past decade, we have had members from Anthropology, Art History, the Business School, Computer Science, Education, Engineering, French and Italian, the Law School, Linguistics, the Medical School, Political Science, Psychology, Sociology, and Statistics, to name a few.

Stanford Panorama
Stanford University contains 7 schools and more than 130 research centers

In addition, many of the faculty in Communication have courtesy appointments and formal affiliations in other departments, which gives researchers a direct conduit into a wide variety of intellectual resources. Among the current faculty, there are appointments in American Studies, Art History, Computer Science, Modern Thought and Literature, Political Science, Psychology, Sociology, Symbolic Systems, Science Technology and Society, and Urban Studies.

The Department of Communication has a tradition of researching areas that are relevant not only within the field, but also to academics and practitioners in other disciplines. Collaborating with the intellectual diversity at Stanford outside of our department helps us achieve that goal.