Employing both quantitative and qualitative methods, Dr. Mourão focuses on how journalists cover political events in a changing media ecosystem. Her projects have focused on elections and protests, both in the United States and in Brazil. At MSU, she teaches courses on social media, media literacy, media theory, and multimedia reporting. She has received grants from the National Science Foundation, the US State Department (Missions Brazil and Chile), the Online News Association, and the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication.
Dr. Mourão received her doctorate in journalism from the University of Texas at Austin, School of Journalism. She also holds a Master of Arts from the University of Florida, Center for Latin American Studies and a Bachelor of Arts from the Universidade Federal do Amazonas, Departamento de Comunicação Social.
Dr. Mourão studies how news narratives about politics are constructed and how journalism can improve in an era of declining media trust and fragmentation of political communication. She conducts research that seeks to understand and improve how people create and make sense of news about politics. Two questions guide her scholarly work: a) What influences shape journalistic coverage of politics? and b) How does fragmentation challenge the ways in which political news narratives are created and consumed?
Her work has informed several projects aiming to strengthen Latin American and US media through education and professional training. In 2018-19, she was awarded grants from the US Department of State Missions Brazil and Chile to train journalism students in Brasilia and Santiago. Her teaching has also been funded by the Online News Association for a project testing the effectiveness of a multimedia issue-oriented curriculum for undergraduate reporting.
Dr. Mourão has won many awards, including the Teacher-Scholar Award (MSU), Mass Communication and Society Faculty Grant (AEJMC), the Gene Burd Outstanding Dissertation in Journalism Studies (ICA), the Top Dissertation Award by the Mass Communication and Society Division (AEJMC), and the Latin American Studies Award (AEJMC).