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Peter Bobkowski

Associate Professor
Clyde M. Reed Professor of Journalism
Affiliate Faculty, Center for Russian, East European & Eurasian Studies
Primary office:
Dole Center for Human Development
Room 2071


Peter Bobkowski joined the KU faculty in 2011. He researches the developmental role of mediated information. His current work focuses on data and information literacy, that is, how young people learn about, access and evaluate data and information. He also has studied information sharing practices on social media.

Bobkowski is active in scholastic (high school) journalism research and service. He has examined civic engagement and gender differences among high school journalists. He has collaborated on two nationwide surveys of student publications.

Bobkowski teaches Infomania: Information Management, for which he co-wrote an open-access textbook, Be Credible: Information Literacy for Journalism, Public Relations, Advertising and Marketing Students 

Academic Degrees

  • Ph.D. (2010) University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • M.A. (2006) University of Houston
  • B.A. (1999) University of Alberta


  • David Adams Journalism Educator of the Year, Scholastic Journalism Division, Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication, 2019
  • Friend of KSPA, Kansas Scholastic Press Association, 2019
  • Keeler Professorship, University of Kansas, 2019
  • Budig Professorship of Writing, William Allen White School of Journalism and Mass Communications, 2018
  • Katich Award for Creativity in Teaching, 2016
  • Pioneer Award, National Scholastic Press Association, 2015
  • Promising Professor (Second Place), Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication, 2014
  • Gold Key, Columbia Scholastic Press Association, 2012
  • Outstanding Graduating Ph.D. Student, School of Journalism and Mass Communication, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 2010

Teaching Interests

  • Information literacy
  • Data literacy
  • Reporting
  • Research methods
  • Mass communication theory


Professor Bobkowski's research focuses on the developmental role of mediated information among adolescents and emerging adults. This includes data literacy, information literacy, and the relationship between student journalism and civic engagement. He also has conducted research on sharing information about politics and religion via social media.

Research Interests

  • Youth and media
  • Civic engagement
  • Information and data literacy
  • Social media
  • Media and religion
  • Scholastic media

Selected Publications

Bobkowski, P. S., Watson, J. C., & Aromona, O. O. (2020). A little bit of that from one of your grandparents: Interpreting others’ direct-to-consumer genetic ancestry results [Journal Articles]. Genealogy, 4(2), 54–70. https://doi.org/10.3390/genealogy4020054
Bobkowski, P. S. (2020). Data journalism [Book Chapters]. In V. F. Filak (Ed.), Convergent journalism: An introduction. Writing and producing across media (pp. 115–130). Routledge.
Bobkowski, P. S., & Younger, K. (2020). News credibility: Adapting and testing a source evaluation assessment in journalism [Journal Articles]. College & Research Libraries, 81(5), 822–843. https://doi.org/10.5860/crl.81.5.822
Pluretti, R., & Bobkowski, P. S. (2019). Social media, adolescent developmental tasks, and music [Book Chapters]. In K. McFerran, P. Derrington, & S. Saarikallio (Eds.), Handbook of music, adolescents, and wellbeing (pp. 207–216). Oxford University Press.
Bobkowski, P. S., & Cavanah, S. B. (2019). When “journalism kids” do better: A reassessment of secondary and post-secondary achievement and activities [Journal Articles]. Journalism and Mass Communication Educator, 74(4), 438–451. https://doi.org/10.1177/1748048518817652
Bobkowski, P. S., Jiang, L., Peterlin, L. J., & Rodriguez, N. J. (2019). Who gets vocal about hyperlocal: Neighborhood involvement and socioeconomics in the sharing of hyperlocal news [Journal Articles]. Journalism Practice, 13, 159–177. https://doi.org/10.1080/17512786.2017.1419827
Bobkowski, P. S., & Younger, K. L. (2018). Be Credible: Information Literacy for Journalism, Public Relations, Advertising and Marketing Students [Books]. University of Kansas Libraries. https://doi.org/10.17161/1808.27350
LoMonte, F., Gordon, S., & Bobkowski, P. S. (2018). How communities can increase civic engagement by protecting their student journalists’ rights to express themselves [Journal Articles]. Re-Imagining a 21st-Century Democracy Journal, 1(1), 66–72. https://static1.squarespace.com/static/5a732897e45a7c39d7affbff/t/5b8ef7...
Erba, J., Ternes, B., Bobkowski, P. S., Liu, Y., & Logan, T. (2018). Sampling methods and sample populations in quantitative mass communication research studies: A 15-year census of six journals [Journal Articles]. Communication Research Reports, 35(1), 42–47. https://doi.org/10.1080/08824096.2017.1362632
Vu, H. T., Jang, L., Cuava, L. C., Riedl, M., Tran, V. D., & Bobkowski, P. S. (2018). What influences media effects on public perception? A cross-national study of comparative agenda setting [Journal Articles]. International Communication Gazette, 81(6–8), 580–601. https://doi.org/10.1177/1748048518817652
Peters, J. W., Belmas, G. I., & Bobkowski, P. S. (2017). A paper shield? Whether state privilege protections apply to student journalists [Journal Articles]. Fordham Intellectual Property, Media & Entertainment Law Journal, 27(4), 763–801. http://www.fordhamiplj.org/publications/paper-shield-whether-state-privi...
Bobkowski, P. S., & Belmas, G. I. (2017). Mixed message media: Girls’ voices and civic engagement in student journalism [Journal Articles]. Girlhood Studies, 10(1), 89–106. https://doi.org/10.3167/ghs.2017.100107
Bobkowski, P. S., Cavanah, S., & Miller, P. R. (2017). Who are the “journalism kids?”: Academic predictors of journalism participation in secondary schools [Journal Articles]. Journalism & Mass Communication Educator, 72(1), 68–82. https://doi.org/10.1177/1077695815622770
Bobkowski, P. S., & Miller, P. R. (2016). Civic implications of secondary school journalism: Associations with voting propensity and community volunteering [Journal Articles]. Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly, 93(3), 530–550. https://doi.org/10.1177/1077699016628821
Bobkowski, P. S., Shafer, A., & Ortiz, R. R. (2016). Sexual intensity of adolescents’ online self-presentations: Joint contribution of identity, media consumption, and extraversion [Journal Articles]. Computers in Human Behavior, 58, 64–74. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chb.2015.12.009
Bobkowski, P. S. (2015). Sharing the news: Effects of informational utility and opinion leadership on online news sharing [Journal Articles]. Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly, 92(2), 320–345. https://doi.org/10.1177/1077699015573194
Miller, P. R., Bobkowski, P. S., Maliniak, D., & Rapoport, R. B. (2015). Talking politics on Facebook: Network centrality and political discussion practices in social media [Journal Articles]. Political Research Quarterly, 68(2), 377–391. https://doi.org/10.1177/1065912915580135
Bobkowski, P. S., & Shafer, A. (2015). Sexual media and American youth [Book Chapters]. In S. M. Coupet & E. Marrus (Eds.), Children, sexuality, and the law (pp. 108–132). New York University Press.
Bobkowski, P. S., & Shafer, A. (2014). The digital bridge to adulthood [Book Chapters]. In J. F. Nussbaum (Ed.), The handbook of lifespan communication (pp. 159–176). Peter Lang.
Bobkowski, P. S., & Smith, J. E. (2013). Social media divide: Characteristics of emerging adults who do not use social network websites [Journal Articles]. Media Culture and Society, 35(6), 771–781. https://doi.org/10.1177/0163443713491517
Bobkowski, P. S., Brown, J. D., & Neffa, D. R. (2012). “Hit me up and we can get down:” U.S. youths’ risk behaviors and sexual self-disclosure in MySpace profiles [Journal Articles]. Journal of Children and Mass Media, 6, 119–134. https://doi.org/10.1080/17482798.2011.633412
Bobkowski, P. (2012). Faith in the digital age: Emerging adults’ faith mosaics and media practices [Book Chapters]. In C. Barry & M. Abo-Zena (Eds.), Emerging adults’ religiousness and spirituality (pp. 93–108). Oxford University Press. https://doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199959181.003.0006
Shafer, A., Bobkowski, P. S., & Brown, J. D. (2012). Sexual media practice: How adolescents select, engage with, and are affected by sexual media [Book Chapters]. In K. E. Dill (Ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Media Psychology (pp. 223–251). Oxford University Press. https://doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780195398809.013.0013
Bobkowski, P. S., Goodman, M., & Bowen, C. P. (2012). Student media in U.S. secondary schools: Associations with school demographic characteristics [Journal Articles]. Journalism and Mass Communication Educator, 67, 252–266. https://doi.org/10.1177/1077695812444699
Bobkowski, P. S., & Pearce, L. D. (2011). Baring their souls in online profiles or not: Religious self-disclosure in social media [Journal Articles]. Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, 50, 744–762. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-5906.2011.01597.x
Brown, J. D., & Bobkowski, P. S. (2011). Older and newer media: Patterns of use and effects on adolescents’ health and well-being [Journal Articles]. Journal for Research on Adolescence , 21, 95–113. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1532-7795.2010.00717.x
Bobkowski, P. S., & Kalyanaraman, S. (2010). Effects of online Christian self-disclosure on impression formation [Journal Articles]. Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, 49, 456–476. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-5906.2010.01522.x
Bobkowski, P. S. (2009). Adolescent religiosity and selective exposure to television [Journal Articles]. Journal of Media and Religion, 8, 55–70. https://doi.org/10.1080/15348420802670942

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