Judith McIntosh White

Associate Professor

Photo: Judith McIntosh White

Mass Communication

Room 206

Ph.D., Texas A&M University, 2006


Dr. White earned her B.S.J. from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism; her M.S. in science and technology journalism from the College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at Texas A&M University; and her doctorate from TAMU’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences in 5.5 years while working 40 hours a week at Texas A&M in institutional public relations, most recently as assistant director of Marketing and Communications. She came to C&J in 2007 with college-level teaching experience at Miles College, Birmingham, Alabama, an HBCU. She teaches graduate level classes in health communication and communication theory and research methods and undergraduate classes in strategic communication.


Dr. White’s research is focused on health communication and science journalism. She also works in social justice and activism research, using the methodology of digital ethnography. The ultimate intent of her research is to discover and promulgate more effective methods by which (1) health interventions may be crafted and disseminated to target publics, including through use of entertainment education methodologies; (2) journalists may more effectively cover science issues; (3) social justice may be promoted and disseminated to wider publics through digital ethnography; and (3) mass media professionals and scholars can facilitate public engagement with issues concerning health, science, technology, and agriculture. Dr. White uses qualitative, quantitative, and digital ethnography methodologies to further her research agenda.

Sample publications/creative works

Dr. White’s 2006 dissertation dealt with the coverage of a crucial public health issue, media coverage of Mad Cow disease in the United States. Subsequently, Dr. White has published numerous articles dealing with health and science issues, including the following:

Morales, G.I., White, J.M., German, L., Dozal, M., Bentley, J. and Weiss, D. Binge-drinking prevention campaigns targeting Hispanic/Latino college students: Importance of individual attitudes and peer support. (Article based on data collected by Dr. White; collaboration led by Dr. White.) (Under review September, 2020)

White, J.M., Morales, G.I., Bentley, J., and Weiss, D. Talking to undergraduates about binge drinking: What channels should we use? (Article based on data collected by Dr. White; collaboration led by Dr. White.) (Submitted September, 2020)

Shields, J.D., Archiopoli, A.M., Bentley, J.M., Weiss, D., Hoffmann, J., White, J.M., Sharp, M.K., Hong, Z., and Kimura, M. (2016). Binge-drinking attitudes and behaviors among Hispanic and non-Hispanic college students: Suggestion for tailoring health campaign messages. Hispanic Journal of Behavioral Sciences. (Article based on data collected by Dr. White; collaboration led by Dr. White.)

Weiss, D., White, J. M., Stohr, R. A., & Willis, M. (2015). Influencing healthcare policy: Implications of legislators’ information source preferences for public relations practitioners and public information officers. Online Journal of Communication and Media Technologies. (Article based on data collected by Dr. White; collaboration led by Dr. White.)

White, J. M. & Wingenbach, G. (2013 April). Barriers to Effective Health Reporting: Impacts of Attitudinal Differences between Public Information Officers and Mass Media Journalists. Journal of Public Relations Research, 25(2), 123-140.

White, J.M. (2012). Sabotaging public engagement with science: Missing scientific principles in newspaper stories about the Wakefield MMR-autism controversy. Romanian Journal of Journalism and Communication/Revista Romana de Jurnalism si Comunicare, 3-4: 79-93.

Dr. White has published numerous articles dealing with science communication in journalism, strategic communication and public relations, including the following:

White, J.M. (2018 June). Improving museum field trips’ contributions to experiential education for STEM disciplines: Why should ag educators care? NACTA Journal, 62(2), 104-114.

Bentley, J., Weiss, D., White J.M., & Shields, J. (2016). Teaching strategic communication campaigns. Teaching Journalism and Mass Communication. (Topic initiated and collaboration led by Dr. White.)

White, J.M. (2014). Influencing Policy Decisions: Impact of Legislator Attitudes and Demographics on Public Relations Practice. Online Journal of Communication and Media Technologies. 4(1): 83-104.

White, J., Willis, M., & Stohr, R. (2013). Legislators’ Reliance on Mass Media as Information Sources: Implications for Symmetrical Communication between Public Information Officers, Public Relations Practitioners and Policymakers. PRism, 9(1): 3-20.

White, J.M. (2013). Translating Science, Health and Technology: Reporters as Knowledge Transfer Intermediaries. Online Journal of Communication and Media Technologies, 3(2): 227-252.

White, J.M. (2012): The Communicative Action of Journalists and Public Information Officers: Habermas Revisited. JournalismPractice. 6(4):563-580.

White, J.M. and Rutherford, T. (2012). Impact of Newspaper Characteristics on Reporters’ Agricultural Crisis Stories: Productivity, Story Length, and Source Selection. Journal of Applied Communications, 96(3): 89-804.

White, J.M. (2012). Translating Technology, Science and Health: Public Information Officers as Knowledge Transfer Intermediaries. Online Journal of Communication and Media Technologies, 2(2):103-125.

White, J. & Rutherford, T. (2009). Impact of Reporter Work Role Identity on News Story Source Selection: Implications for Coverage of Agricultural Crises Introduction and Review of Relevant Literature. Journal of Applied Communications, 93(3-4):16-31.

Dr. White has produced two award-winning digital ethnographies on social justice themes:

White, J.M., Executive Producer; Adan Garcia, Director. (Debut November 2, 2014). No Place Like Martineztown. Winner, international Omni Award. Documentary film detailing struggles of Martineztown, an ethic/historic area of Albuquerque, to survive in the face of out-migration, urban renewal, and natural disasters.

White, J.M., Executive Producer; Adan Garcia, Director; Carolyn Flynn, Script Writer. (Debut December 5, 2012). Just Call Me Joe. Financed by $4,000 RAC grant from the University of New Mexico. Shown (debut) to department and community members at Communication & Journalism Colloquium, 12/5/12. Winner of two bronze Telly Awards (national competition, 11,000 entries). Accepted at Albuquerque Film Festival for June, 2013 showing. Community showing in Questa, New Mexico, 12/15/12; community showing in Taos in February 2013; other community. Aired numerous times (with closed captioning) on New Mexico PBS channel, KENW, Portales.

Teaching Style

Dr. White’s classes are described as interactive, experiential, dramatic, and fun. She loves online instruction and is a masterful online teacher.

Favorite Classes

Dr. White’s favorite classes focus on health communication (C&J550, C&J552, C&J553), preparation of incoming masters students (CJ500, CJ501), and on strategic communication (C&J387, C&J488, COMM 2135, CJ365). She also enjoys advising graduate students at both the MA and PhD levels.

Why UNM?

Dr. White chose to come to UNM due to the C&J Department’s international reputation and the research interests of fellow C&J faculty, as well as UNM’s location in beautiful northern New Mexico and its diverse student body.


Dr. White’s service has included designing the tri-chair model and serving as one of three department chairs; senior fellow at UNM’s Robert Wood Johnson Center for Health Policy; reviewing grant proposals for the National Science Foundation; reviewing journal articles for multiple scholarly journals and serving on the editorial board of the NACTA Journal; instituting C&J’s first online course offerings in 2007; co-designing the department’s accelerated online program in strategic communication; serving on numerous university and C&J committees and as department Faculty Senate representative; and as associate department chair 2013-2015; and facilitating the success of C&J students from under-represented groups, winning the 2013 UNM New Mexico Project of Graduates of Color ALLY Award.