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About Laura Ellingson

Laura Ellingson's research focuses on gender in extended families, feminist and qualitative methodologies, and interdisciplinary collaboration and teamwork in health care organizations.She also publishes extensively in the field of qualitative methodology, on topics such as ethnography, embodiment, and envisioning a continuum approach to social science methodologies. Currently, Laura is collaborating with Photographer and Visual Artist Renee Billingslea, SCU Art & Art History Dept., and SCU alumna Kristian Borofka, on a project exploring communication in the lives of long-term cancer survivors, entitled "Voicing Survivorship." A website highlighting the "photovoice" phase of the project shares participants' photos, their thoughts and stories, and information on survivorship. Laura also is the author of Communicating in the Clinic:  Negotiating Frontstage and Backstage Teamwork (2005, Hampton) and Engaging Crystallization in Qualitative Research (2009, Sage), and co-author with Patty Sotirin ofAunting: Cultural Practices that Sustain Family and Community Life (2010, Baylor University Press) and Where the Aunts Are: Family, Feminism, and Kinship in Popular Culture (2013, Baylor University Press). 


April 2012 Present Professor of Communication and Women’s & Gender Studies, Santa Clara University
June 2008April 2012 Associate Professor of Communication and Women’s & Gender Studies, Santa Clara University
March 2007June 2008 Associate Professor of Communication, Santa Clara University
September 2001March 2007 Assistant Professor of Communication, Santa Clara University

Curriculum Vitae


  • Feminist Methods (COMM 111G)
  • Qualitative Methods (COMM 111)
  • Communication & Gender (COMM 108A)
  • Gender, Health, & Sexuality (COMM 106A)
  • Vocation & Gender (COMM 101A)
  • Senior Thesis (COMM 112), topics including Gender & Family Communication


May 2001 Ph.D. in Communication, University of South Florida
May 1997 M.A. in Communication, Northern Illinois University
December 1992 MA in Writing (Nonfiction emphasis), University of New Hampshire - Main Campus
May 1991 B. A. in English (Religion minor), University of Vermont

Contact Information

Departments of Communication and Women’s & Gender Studies
Santa Clara University
212 Vari Hall
500 El Camino Real
Santa Clara, CA 95053
(408) 551-7056


Research Works (18)