College of Humanities and Social Sciences
College of Humanities and Social Sciences

Emily K. Vraga

Emily K. Vraga

Emily K. Vraga

Assistant Professor, Political Communication Minor Director

new media; political communication; media effects; disagreement;

Emily K. Vraga joined the faculty at George Mason University in 2012 as an assistant professor in the Department of Communication. She received her Ph.D. at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication and spent one year as a Post-Doctoral Research Instructor in the School of Media and Public Affairs at George Washington University.

Dr. Vraga's research focuses on how individual predispositions and motivations influence the processing of media content, particularly in the evolving digital environment. Her work has investigated a wide range of new media formats, including political blogs, social media networks like Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter, and television programs that blur the lines between entertainment and information. Dr. Vraga is particularly interested in the ways in which partisans process messages to match their predispositions, as well as techniques that can limit biased information processing and the spread of misinformation. 

Selected Publications

Vraga, E. K. (2016). Party differences in political content on social media. Online Information Review, 40, 595-609.

Vraga, E. K., Bode, L., & Troller-Renfree, S. (2016). Moving beyond self-reports: Using eye tracking to determine topic and style differences in attention to social media content. Communication Methods and Measures, 10, 2-3, 149-164.

Vraga, E. K. (2015). How Party Affiliation Conditions the Experience of Dissonance and Explains Polarization and Selective Exposure.  Social Science Quarterly, 96, 487-502.

Vraga, E. K., Thorson, K., Kligler-Vilenchik, N., & Gee, E. (2015). How individual sensitivities to disagreement shape youth political expression on Facebook. Computers in Human Behavior, 45, 281-289.

Vraga, E. K., & Tully, M. (2015). Media literacy messages and hostile media perceptions: Processing of nonpartisan versus partisan political information. Mass Communication and Society, 14, 422-448.

Courses Taught

COMM302: Foundations of Mass Communication
COMM400: Communication Research Methods
COMM650: Graduate Communication Research Methods
COMM690: New Media and Democracy
COMM750: Graduate Research Methods II


B.A. in Journalism and Mass Communication, Spanish from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2005
M.A. in Mass Communications from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2008
Ph.D. in Mass Communications from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2011

Dissertations Supervised

Anne-Bennett Smithson, I Beg to Differ:Understanding Disagreement, Agreement, and Emotional Appeals in Gubernatorial Campaign Communication (2017)