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Jimmie Manning

Associate Professor
Organizational / Corporate Communication
COMM-SAC Adivsor, Lambda Pi Eta Advisor


Dr. Manning is known in the communication discipline for his work exploring sexuality in relationships, his blending of interpersonal and media communication research, teaching practices that often involve community engagement and service learning, and for serving in many different leadership positions for professional academic organizations.

Research. Professor Manning uses a wide range of research methods to understand relationships. This research explores three distinct contexts: relational discourses (how relationships are constituted by communication), constitutive pragmatism (how communication facilitates organizing and understanding, especially in health contexts), and new media.

Dr. Manning's research has been supported by a number of funding agencies including the National Science Foundation and has resulted in over 70 publications as well as thirteen top paper awards from regional, national, or international conferences. He has been honored with the Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality Early Professional Leadership Award and the Applegate Award for Excellence in Research.

Teaching. In line with his research interests, Dr. Manning has taught courses exploring relationships, computer-mediated communication, cultural studies, qualitative research methods, organizational communication, and communication theory. In addition to traditional classroom teaching, he has also arranged community-based service-learning courses that have involved ethnographic research in a variety of communities including post-Katrina Mississippi. He has received many grants to support his teaching endeavors, including awards from Learn & Serve American and the Scripps-Howard Center for Civic Engagement.

His teaching has also been recognized through his being selected as the recipient of the International Association for Relationship Research Teaching Award, the Central States Communication Association Outstanding New Teacher Award, the OSCLG Feminist Teacher-Mentor Award, the National Communication Association Outstanding Mentor in Master's Education Award, and the Southern States Communication Association’s Outreach Award, among others.

Service. Professor Manning is a lifetime member of the National Communication Association, the Central States Communication Association (where he is also Executive Director), and the Organization for the Study of Communication, Language, and Gender; and a member of several other professional associations including the Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality (where he serves as Professional Networking Chair) and the International Association for Relationship Research. He serves as founder and editor for the new journal Sexuality and Communication; and is an editorial board member for The Journal of Social Media in Society, Journal of Applied Communication Research, Communication Studies, Qualitative Research Reports in Communication,  and Women & Language (where he is also the Alternative Scholarship Editor), among others.

He is extensively involved with community projects, Northern Illinois University, and the communication discipline. His service work has been recognized with the Central States Communication Association Outstanding Service Award and the National Communication Association Lambda Award.

Latest Publications


  • Dunn, J. C., Manning, J., & Stern, D. M. (Eds.). (2015). Lucky Strikes and a three martini lunch: Thinking about television’s Mad Men (2nd ed.). Newcastle, UK: Cambridge Scholars.
  • Manning, J., & Kunkel, A. (2014). Researching interpersonal relationships: Qualitative methods, studies, and analysis. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE.

Journal Articles

  • Manning, J., & Adams, T. E. (In review). Popular culture studies and autoethnography: An essay on method. The Popular Culture Studies Journal, 3(3).
  • Manning, J. (2015). Communicating sexual identities: A typology of coming out. Sexuality & Culture, 19(1), 122-138.
  • Manning, J. (2015). Paradoxes of (im)purity: Affirming heteronormativity and queering heterosexuality in family discourses of purity pledges. Women’s Studies in Communication, 38(1), 99-117. 
  • Manning, J. (2015). Positive and negative communicative behaviors in coming-out conversations. Journal of Homosexuality, 62(1), 67-97. 
  • Manning, J. (2015). The rhetorical function of laugh tracks in situation comedies: Examining queer shame in Will & Grace and Roseanne. Relevant Rhetoric, 6, 1-15. Retrieved from
  • Manning, J., & Denker, K. J. (2015). Doing feminist interpersonal communication research: A call for action, two methodological approaches, and theoretical potentials. Women & Language, 38(1), 133-142.
  • Manning, J., & Kunkel, A. (2015). Qualitative approaches to dyadic analyses in family communication research: An invited essay. Journal of Family Communication, 15, 185-192. doi:10.1080/15267431.2015.1043434
  • Manning, J. (2014). A constitutive approach to interpersonal communication studies. Communication Studies, 65(4), 432-440. doi:10.1080/10510974.2014.927294
  • Manning, J. (2014). Construction of values in online and offline dating discourses: Comparing presentational and articulated rhetorics of relationship seeking. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 19(3), 309-324. doi:10.1111/jcc4.12037
  • Manning, J., & Kunkel, A. (2014). Making meaning of meaning-making research: Using qualitative research for studies of social and personal relationships. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 31(4), 433-441. doi:10.1177/0265407514525890
  • Manning, J. (2013). Interpretive theorizing in the seductive world of sexuality and interpersonal communication: Getting guerilla with studies of sexting and purity rings. International Journal of Communication, 7, 2507-2520. Retrieved from

Book Chapters

  • Manning, J. (2015). Ipsedixitism, ipseity, and ipsilateral identity: The fear of finding ourselves in the fissures between phishing and Catfish. In A. Herbig, A. Herrmann, & A. Tyma (Eds.), Beyond new media: Discourse and critique in a polymediated age (pp. 83-107). Lanham, MD: Lexington Books.
  • Manning, J. (2015). Families living in closets: Talking about alcoholism in and out of family households. In M. Brann (Ed.), Contemporary case studies in health communication (2nd ed.; pp. 161-173). Dubuque, IA: Kendall Hunt.
  • Schon, J., Ristić, I., & Manning, J. (2015). When the Internet becomes the doctor: Seeking health information online. In M. Brann (Ed.), Contemporary case studies in health communication (2nd ed.; pp. 311-322). Dubuque, IA: Kendall Hunt.
  • Manning, J. (2014). Coming out conversations and gay/bisexual men’s sexual health: A constitutive model study. In V. L. Harvey, & T. H. Housel (Eds.), Health care disparities and the LGBT population (pp. 27-54). Lanham, MD: Lexington Books.
  • Manning, J. (2014). Communication and healthy sexual practices: Toward a holistic communicology of sexuality. In M. H. Eaves (Ed.), Applications in health communication: Emerging trends (pp. 263-286). Dubuque, IA: Kendall-Hunt.
  • Manning, J. (2012). Finding yourself in Mad Men. In D. Stern, J. Manning, & J. C. Dunn (Eds.), Lucky Strikes and a three martini lunch: Thinking about television’s Mad Men (pp. 89-96). Newcastle, UK: Cambridge Scholars.

Watson Hall 207
Office Phone: 815-753-7107

Contact Us

Department of Communication
Northern Illinois University
Watson Hall 210
DeKalb, IL 60115
Phone: 815-753-1563
Fax: 815-753-7109

Acting Department Chair

Mehdi Semati
Phone: 815-753-7028