Date of Award

Fall 2023

Document Type

Open Access Dissertation


School of Journalism and Mass Communications

First Advisor

Dr. Kevin Hull


The purpose of this study was to explore community college athletic departments and how they connect and facilitate messages to their stakeholders. With limited resources, it’s important to understand how the athletic departments are applying best strategies and principles of relational management. Therefore, the goal and importance of this project was to explore how a mass communication tool in Twitter and how it is used in community college athletics, an area that is not a focal point in either collegiate athletics or sport communication scholarship. Using Kent and Taylor’s (1998) dialogic principles of communication as a guide for this project, tweets of community college athletic departments were explored and examined. The research study used a stratified random sample to examine the Twitter profiles of the collegiate athletic departments. The 50-community college athletic Twitter accounts examined for this study sent a total of 1,739 tweets during the selected weeks in October and November of 2022 (SD = 38.10; M = 34.78). The results indicated and supported previous literature in higher education in that the community college athletic departments are not fully implementing the dialogic features and that the accounts are primarily being used as a news and promotion tool. The results also indicated a positive shift for women’s overall sport coverage and sport specific coverage. Theoretical implications and future research are also discussed in the project.


© 2024, Matthew Alan Stilwell