PhD, University of Kansas
MA, Wichita University
BA, Auburn University
Debra Worthington has been an active teacher and communication scholar for over 30 years. She is a strong advocate of active student learning. Active learning student experiences emphasize interactive and collaborative student discussions, activities, and assignments, enhanced with the strategic use of technology. Her goal is to empower students so that they take what they have learned in the classroom and use it to enrich their personal and professional lives.
Her early research focused on psychosocial issues affecting juror decision making and courtroom communication. She eventually became interested in factors affecting juror listening. Since then, she has published numerous articles related to listening, particularly in the area of measurement and assessment. She is lead author of one of the principal textbooks in listening, Listening: Processes, Functions, and Competency, and lead editor on The Sourcebook of Listening Research: Methodology and Measures. Her research has received multiple top paper, top convention, and top panel awards, among them are the Ralph G. Nichols Listening Award, the Burton Award for Legal Achievement, and the ILA Researcher of the Year Award. Her research has been recognized by organizations such as the American Society of Trial Consultants, the European Communication Research and Education Association, and the International Listening Association, as well as by multiple divisions of the National Communication Association, the Eastern Communication Association, and the Southern Communication Association. In 2017, she was inducted into the International Listening Association’s Hall of Fame in recognition of her outstanding research, teaching, and service to the field of listening. She has received multiple research contracts and grants from public and private organizations and is past president of the International Listening Association.
When she's not researching, she enjoys traveling with her family, gardening, baking (with great success and even greater failures), and playing "go fish" with the feline members of the family.
effects of psycho-social and communication processes on juror decision-making, listening and information processing