Karen Dwyer, Ph.D.
Karen Kangas Dwyer
- Robert T. Reilly Diamond Professor
- Communication, Professor
Karen Kangas Dwyer (PhD, University of Nebraska, Lincoln, 1995) , former School of Communication Robert T. Reilly Diamond Professor, Basic Public Speaking Fundamentals Course Director, and Chair of the Human Resources & Training Graduate Certificate Program. From 2009 to 2013, she served as Assistant Director of the School of Communication as well as Speech Division Coordinator. She received University of Nebraska at Omaha Excellence in Teaching Award and the University of Nebraska state system Outstanding Teaching and Instructional Creative Award (OTICA). In 2010, the Public Speaking Fundamentals that she has directed for 16 years, received the 2010 National Communication Association Outstanding Basic Program Award for the top General Education Program in the nation.
Dwyer developed five new courses which make up a new emphasis (concentration) in our speech undergraduate major and a new focus in our graduate program, including Communication Training and Development, Communication for Instructional Settings, Communication Leadership, Presentation & Interview Anxiety Reduction, and the new Speech Communication Capstone Class. In addition to teaching these courses, she teaches special public speaking classes and workshops to help apprehensive communicators overcome communication anxiety.
Dwyer has published a textbook, book chapters, a Dutch public speaking trade book, an instructor's manual, student workbook, CD ROM, several articles and conference papers related to communication apprehension, instructional communication, classroom climate, and other communication education and instructional communication topics.
Dwyer has served on four communication journal editorial boards. In 2011, she was Chair of the National Communication Association Division of Communication Apprehension and Competence. In 2006, she was Chair of the National Association of Communication Center's Conference and brought the conference to Omaha, which involved over 25 UNO students and faculty in the conference panels, presentations, and activities.
Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org to set up a phone or zoom appointment.
Research and Creative Activity InterestsInstructional communication, speech anxiety, communication apprehension, communication education, training and development, team building, facilitation and communication leadership, e-textbooks, classroom climate, communication centers
Scheduled TeachingCommunication for Instructional Settings, Corporate Training and Development, Communication Research Methods, Topics in Communication Methods, Topics in Speech Communication, Public Speaking Fundamentals, Communication, Teamwork and Facilitation
University of Nebraska Distinguished Teacher - Awarded the University of Nebraska State System Outstanding Teaching and Instructional Creativity Award (OTICA), 2006
Robert T. Reilly Diamond Professor (2008-2014) – Awarded the Endowed Chair for Research, Leadership & Teaching, School of Communication, University of Nebraska at Omaha.
University-wide Excellence in Teaching Award - awarded by the University of Nebraska at Omaha, 1998
Outstanding Program Award for the Top General Education Program - Awarded by the National Communication Association Basic Course Division, 2010
American Society of Training and Development (ASTD) Champion Award -Awarded by the ASTD Nebraska for Mentoring University Students and Training Professionals, 2004.
University of Nebraska at Omaha – Awarded the University Committee on Teaching Outstanding Teaching Circle Award, 2001.
Conference Paper awards: National Communication Association (NCA) “Top Panel of Competitive Papers,” 1997, 1998, 1999; Distinguished Paper Award for the Top Competitive Paper by the Speech Communication Association (SCA) CAAC Commission.
University Departmental Teaching Award (UDTA, 2009), University of Nebraska System, School of Communication
Books & Book Chapters
Dwyer, K. (2017). Public Speaking Student Workbook (231 pp.). Fountainhead Press.
Dwyer, K. (2016) iConquer Speech Anxiety and Interview Anxiety. (279 pp), (KLD Books- Academic.
Dwyer, K. K. (2015). Helping students conquer anxiety in the session. Book Chapter in Atkins-Sayer & Yook (Eds.), Communicating advice: Peer tutoring and communication practice, 155-176. Peter Lang Publishing.
Dwyer, K. (2012) iConquer Speech Anxiety Workbook. (226 pp), KLD Books- Academic.
Dwyer, K. (2009). The Multidimensional Model for Selecting Interventions. Book Chapter in J.A. Daly, J.C. McCroskey, J. Ayres, T. Hopf, D. Sonandre, & T. A. Wongprasert (Eds.), Avoiding Communication: Shyness, Reticence, and Communication Apprehension, 359-374, Hampton Press.
Dwyer, K. (2005, 1998). Conquer Your Speech Anxiety: Learn to Overcome Your Nervousness about Public Speaking. Wadsworth/ Cengage.
Dwyer, K., & Baartmans, T. (2003). Vanzelfsprekend. (Speak for Yourself). Lisse, The Netherlands: Swets & Zeitlinger Publishers.
Refereed Journal Articles
Dwyer, K. K., & Davidson, M. M. (2012). Is public speaking really more feared than death? Communication Research Reports, 29(2), 99-107. (Featured in New Yorker Magazine, 8-2-15.)
Dwyer, K. K & Davidson, M. M. (2013). Assessment of E-textbook Usage in a Large Public Speaking Program. Basic Communication Course Annual, 25, 126-160.
Dwyer, K. K & Davidson, M. M. (2013). Electronic Textbooks or Paper Textbooks: What are Students Reading? Or Are They Reading at All? Communication Currents, 8 (3).
Dwyer, K. K & Davidson, M. M. (2013). General Education Oral Communication Assessment & Student Preferences for Learning: E-textbook versus Paper Textbook. Communication Teacher, 27 (1-4) 111-126.
Dwyer, K. K & Davidson, M. M. (2012). Speech Center Support Services, the Basic Course, & Oral Communication Assessment. Basic Communication Course Annual, 24, 122-150.
Howe, M. M., & Dwyer, K.K. (2007). The Influence of Diaphragmatic Breathing to Reduce Situational Anxiety for Basic Course Students. Basic Communication Course Annual 19,104-137.
Carlson, R., Dwyer, K., Bingham, S., M., Cruz, A., Prisbell, M, & Fus, D. (2006). Connected Classroom Climate and Communication Apprehension: Correlations and Implications for the Basic Course. Basic Communication Course Annual 18. 1-27. (refereed, 25%)
Dwyer, K., Bingham, S., Carlson, R., Prisbell, M., Cruz, A. & Fus, D. (2004). Communication and Climate: Development of the Connected Classroom Climate Inventory. Communication Research Reports, 21 (3), 264-272.
Dwyer, K., & Carlson, R. E., Kahre, S. (2002). Communication Apprehension and Basic Course Success: The Lab-supported Public Speaking Course Intervention. Basic Communication Course Annual 14, 87-112.
Dwyer, K. (2000). The Multidimensional Model: Teaching Students to Self-Manage High Communication Apprehension by Self-Selecting Treatments. Communication Education, 49 (1) 72-81. (Featured in the NCA Spectra, January, 2000).
Dwyer, K. (1998). Communication Apprehension and Learning Style Preference: Correlations and Implications for Teaching. Communication Education, 47 (2), 101-114.