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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

Dr. Kristen Cvancara

Page address:

Kristin Cvancara

Fulbright Scholar (Finland, 2012)

201-P Armstrong Hall

Professional Vita


Ph.D., University of Minnesota, Twin Cities, 2004
M.A., University of Minnesota, Twin Cities, 2000
B.S., St. Cloud State University, 1992

Research/Creative Interests

Interpersonal communication and social influence, use of verbal aggression to gain compliance among close relationship partners, sibling communication patterns, relationship between family communication patterns and bullying experiences in school.

Courses Taught

Undergraduate and Graduate-level courses: Interpersonal Communication, Research Methods, Communication Theory, Family Communication, Persuasion Theory, Organizational Communication. Undergraduate-level courses: Small Group Communication, Nonverbal Communication, Public Speaking, Introduction to Communication Studies, Intercultural Communication, Leadership & Interpersonal Communication (Honors), Senior Seminar (Capstone course).

Examples of Publications

Cvancara, K. (2017). Optimizing how we teach research methods. Communication Teacher, 31, 35-40.

Cvancara, K., Youngvorst, L., Otto, V., & Brown, C. (2016). Testing role models’ differential effect on use of aggressive compliance gaining strategies.  Communication Quarterly, 64, 36-54.

Pörhölä, M., Cowie, H., Cvancara, K., Kaal, E., Myers, C-A., Tampere, K., & Torres, B. (2016). Cross-Cultural Comparisons of Bullying Among University Students: Perspectives from Argentina, Estonia and Finland, United Kingdom and United States. In H. Cowie & C.-A. Myers (Eds.). Bullying Among University Students (pp. 127-141). London: Routledge.

Cvancara, K. E. (2010). Essay Review of Contemporary Leadership and Intercultural Communication Competence.  Journal of Women in Educational Leadership, 8, 167-175.

Cvancara, K. E. & Kinney, T. A. (2009).  Cognitions, coercion, and IPV: Sex differences in communicating for intimacy. Personal Relationships, 16, 329-341.   

Cvancara, K. E. (2009).  Goal blockage & verbal aggressiveness.  In T.A. Kinney & M. Pörhölä (Eds.), Anti- and pro-social communication: Theories, methods, & applications (pp 15-26). New York: Peter Lang Publishers.

Examples of Awards

Examples of awards I have received include the Nadine B. Andreas Faclty Research Award (2007), the MSU Teacher-Scholar Fellowship Award (2008), a Fulbright Award (Finland, 2012), and the MSU/MSSA Teacher of the Year Award (2014).

Additional Information

Prior to my academic career, I worked in the profit and not-for-profit sectors of industry from 1992-1999. This experience exposed me to financial corporations (investments, marketing and sales) and non-profit organizations (budget forecasting, research and development, and management of annual fundraising campaigns across regions of the US). I loved my first career because it offered me leadership opportunities in marketing and management roles – exactly what my BS in Business Marketing trained me to do. However, overtime I found myself more interested in what my Speech Communication degree taught me regarding how and why people interact in specific ways to accomplish their personal goals. Thus, I transitioned my career from the board room to the classroom. In my graduate studies (1998-2004), I specialized in the areas of interpersonal communication and social influence. These topics remain the primary focus of my research efforts and influence the kinds of courses I teach in the department.  

Beyond the classroom, since joining the CMST department in 2005 I have served in the administrative roles of Director of Graduate Studies (2008-2011) and Department Chairperson (2012-2014, 2017-18). Examples of my campus-wide service work include MSU Leadership Institute facilitator (2007 to present) and Midwest Women’s Leadership Conference speaker (2010), Institutional Review Board member (2007-2012), MSU Faculty Mentor (2011-present) & Peer Reviewer (2007-2009). In the Mankato community I have participated in the Greater Mankato Growth Leadership Institute (2009-2010), and have served as a Social/Racial Justice facilitator for the Mankato YWCA since 2016.