Associate Spotlight

Ashton Gerding Speno, Ph.D., is a Preparing Future Faculty Postdoctoral Fellow in the Departments of Communication, Health Sciences, and Women's and Gender Studies, at the University of Missouri (B.A., Communication, University of Missouri, 2009; M.A., Communication, University of Delaware, 2011; Ph.D., Communication, University of Missouri, 2016). Her research primarily focuses on issues of gender and sexualization in the media, adolescents’ experiences with new media technologies, and media effects on attitudes, behaviors, health outcomes, and self-concept. For example, her dissertation examined the psychosocial predictors of adolescent sexting, focusing specifically on developmental, gendered, and technological explanations. She has been involved with several interdisciplinary research projects this year involving social media, sexting, parent-child communication, and digital advertising, including two grant proposals focused on (1) adolescent sexting and sexualization and (2) healthy body image. She looks forward to future research collaborations on digital media, media processing, gender, and health.