Computer-Mediated Communication

Computer-Mediated Communication

A Theoretical and Practical Introduction to Online Human Communication

Caleb T. Carr


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As so much of our human interaction passes through digital channels, it is essential to understand how being online influences how we communicate with others and ourselves. This textbook introduces students to the fundamental concepts, theories, and applications of computer-mediated communication. Building a foundational understanding of CMC theories, such as CFO, SIP, SIDE, and hyperpersonal, Caleb T. Carr introduces as framework students may use to understand human communication across all digital channels—including those that have yet to exist!

Computer-Mediated Communication explores how CMC intersects with and affects other communication subdisciplines, including interpersonal, organizational, and intergroup. Contemporary examples illustrate theories and application, but the text is written to allow and encourage students to think about their own media use in a broader and channel-agnostic mindset, applying what they learn beyond just Instagram and Snapchat, to make sense of their modern and digital world.

The focus on the theoretical processes that underlay human communication online helps the book remain current with emerging technologies. Theoretical approach is complemented and made accessible with real-world examples, immediate ways to apply knowledge, and a conversational and approachable writing style.

Features of this text include

  • Research in Brief boxes introduce individual CMC studies
  • Chapter objectives
  • End of chapter review questions and key terms
  • Cumulative glossary


Caleb T. Carr:
Caleb T. Carr (PhD, Michigan State University) is currently an associate professor in the School of Communication at Illinois State University, in Normal, Illinois. His research addresses how new media alter communicative processes, including how social media are used for organizational uncertainty reduction, in group collaborations, and to create and maintain identity online. His work has appeared in the Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, Human Communication Research, The Journal of Applied Communication Research, and Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networks, and has received numerous awards from the International Communication Association and National Communication Association. Dr. Carr has researched and taught courses in computer-mediated communication for almost a decade. He has authored or coauthored four book chapters addressing online communication and interpersonal and intergroup effects, most recently a full entry exploring intergroup communication via social media the encyclopedia of intergroup communication from Oxford publishing, edited by Howie Giles. He is currently back in the lab collecting data for the next series of studies; but is excited to get back to Computer Mediated Communication: A Theoretical and Practical Introduction to Online Human Communication.