Marisa Smith

Marisa Smith

Assistant Professor

  • Advertising + Public Relations
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Dr. Marisa A. Smith is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Advertising + Public Relations and the School of Journalism. Her research investigates news disseminated in digital environments and the sociopolitical influence of these messages. Her work highlights that a critical component for understanding the political implications of digital information environments is examining its implications for racial perceptions. Through investigating the effects of socially mediated messages on stereotype endorsement, public policy support, political polarization, civic engagement, and political opinion, her work assesses the implications of digital information environments on democracy. 

Dr. Smith addresses her research questions using a variety of quantitative research methods, including computational methods (e.g., text analysis, supervised machine learning), content analyses, surveys, and experiments. Her work has been published in New Media & Society and Social Media Society. 

Dr. Smith received her PhD in Communication from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Research and Teaching

  • Race
  • Social Media
  • Crime News
  • Politics
  • Activism
  • Computational Social Science
Thematic Research Areas

Computational Communication
Political Communication and Civic Engagement

Research Centers and Labs

Health and Risk Communication Center

Recent Publications

Smith, M. A., Williamson, L. D., & Bigman, C. A. (2020). Can social media news encourage activism? The impact of exposure to mediated discrimination on college students’ activism intention. Social Media + Society, 6(2), 1-10. doi:10.1177/2056305120921366

Bigman, C. A., Smith, M. A., Williamson, L. D., Planey, A., & McNeil, S. (2019). Selective sharing on social media: Examining the effects of disparate racial impact frames on intentions to retransmit news stories among US college students. New Media & Society, 21, 2691-2709. doi:10.1177/1461444819856574

Contact Information

College of Communication Arts & Sciences
Michigan State University
404 Wilson Rd., Room 314
East Lansing, MI 48823